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CrimeView. Chatterbox Gregory Keating.

01 September 2009

A SENIOR Gold Coast bikie has been jailed for refusing to break his gang’s code of silence by testifying at a secret hearing into organise crime.

Finks bikie gang sergeant-at-arms Gregory Keating today pleaded guilty to refusing to give evidence before an Australian Crime Commission hearing in Brisbane last year.

The ACC’s coercive powers allow it to force people to give evidence at ‘star chamber’ hearings or face jail.

But Southport District Court was told convicted drug dealer Keating, 30, refused to answer questions about illicit drug activity, or even confirm he was the Finks sergeant-at-arms.

Defence solicitor Bill Potts told the court Keating had been a Finks member since he was a teenager and his allegiance to the gang required ‘absolute silence’.

The gang represented his ‘entire social group’ and Keating would be ostracized if he broke his vow of silence, Mr Potts said.

Keating was supported in court by a group of heavily tattooed fellow bikies and his new wife, a shapely blonde woman whom he married in a lavish ceremony at a luxury Surfers Paradise hotel last month.

Judge Leanne Clare told Keating he had been ‘polite’ but ‘forthright’ in refusing to answer the ACC’s questions.

She organised crime was ‘an insidious problem’ that was ‘notoriously hard for law enforcement agencies to address’.

”The coercive powers, and the compulsory examinations that go with it, is an important tool for the commission in its fight against organised crime,” the judge told Keating.

”Your refusal to answer questions was deliberately obstructive of a legitimate inquiry.”

She jailed Keating for a year but ordered he be released on a $3000 good behaviour bond after serving four months.