Scenic Rim farmers reassured after vegan activist arrests

PROTEST: Vegan activists faced criminal charges after protesting in Melbourne.
PROTEST: Vegan activists faced criminal charges after protesting in Melbourne.

QUEENSLAND Police have charged 11 people following investigations into alleged trespassing incidents at "agricultural locations" in late March and early April.

Police said the arrests were made across South East Queensland yesterday afternoon and overnight on 18 charges, including unlawfully entering farming land (trespass) and drug offences.

A 29-year-old woman and 26-year-old man were previously charged with trespass on April 5 and were bailed to appear in the Toowoomba Magistrates Court on May 9.

LNP MP Scott Buchholz said he was very pleased to see the Queensland Police taking action.

"I've had many local farmers express concerns to me about the welfare of their families, farms and personal safety," he said.

"This move will reassure them. The actions taken by Police will send a strong message to extremists that trespassing and destruction of private property are unacceptable and will not be tolerated."

Last week Mr Buchholz slammed the Aussie Farms website for producing what he described as an online attack map and hit list of farms.

Mr Buchholz said if the Morrison government was re-elected it would bring the Aussie Farms website under the Privacy Act, exposing it to potential penalties of more than $400,000 if it breached the Act.

Greens candidate for Wright Shannon Girard said protesters who forced their way onto properties were going too far.

"As a party, we support the right for people to protest and the advancement of animal welfare," he said.

"However, we also believe entering people's homes is a step too far and people who do so must face the consequences."

Drug and Serious Crime Group Detective Superintendent Jon Wacker said the charges followed formal complaints from the owners of properties targeted by unauthorised protests.

"The Queensland Police Service respects the right of people to protest in a peaceful manner, however we have a duty to ensure the safety of protesters, farm workers and property owners,' Detective Wacker said.

"Unauthorised protests in and around farmlands and industrial areas create significant personal and workplace safety risks.

"We will take enforcement action whenever necessary to ensure the safety of the community and to protect the rights of people to feel safe in their homes and at their place of work."

Police said investigations were continuing.

The Aussie Farms website was contacted several times for comment but did not respond before deadline.