Sharing intimate pics needs consent in Qld

"(We're) not concerned with intimate images shared between consenting adults," Yvette D'Ath says.
"(We're) not concerned with intimate images shared between consenting adults," Yvette D'Ath says.

Threatening to share and sharing intimate pictures or videos of individuals without their consent is now a crime in Queensland.

Laws criminalising sending and threatening to send private material with anyone in any form without the consent of the subject passed state parliament on Wednesday.

The legislation covers pictures and videos of someone engaged in a sex act they wouldn't normally do in public, their bare breasts, their genital or anal region either bare or covered only by underwear, and photoshopped images.

The laws will apply to anyone who shares them without the consent of the person filmed or photographed, even if they consented to them being taken at the time on any platform.

If convicted of those crimes, the guilty party would face a maximum penalty of three years in prison.

Attorney-General Yvette D'Ath says the government is not looking to penalise consenting adults who happily share images with each other.

Instead, they want to crack down on breaches of privacy and prevent distress to victims.

Both Labor and Liberal National Party MPs voiced support for the bill, describing the act as a form of violence against women that must carry consequences.

They also made a point of acknowledging material was not always shared for in the context of revenge but as a weapon used to cause hurt, humiliate, coerce and intimidate a victim.

Labor MP Melissa McMahon, a former police officer, told parliament of a woman whose face was superimposed onto a pornographic image and posted online along with her name, address and contact.

The post included the message: "Don't knock, just come in. She loves to be tortured and raped."

"Sure enough, men came to her home and knocked on her door even when she had her three-month-old child with her," Ms McMahon told parliament.

"After years of putting up with this behaviour, the perpetrator was eventually located and charged with stalking because we didn't have anything else."

Submissions to legislators called for police training and community education around consent and respectful relationships between young people.

The Centre Against Domestic Abuse shared the story of a woman who discovered a Facebook profile in her name with images of her naked.

"Six months later Jane became aware that her husband had distributed the images through the letterboxes of her neighbourhood and through her sons' sporting clubs," its submission said.

The centre says the new laws would help women like her to get justice and fill gaps not covered by existing legal provisions.

On Wednesday, Police Minister Mark Ryan introduced laws to reform the police disciplinary process that would speed up the process of investigating complaints against officers.

Mr Ryan says the proposed legislation builds on the lessons of the Fitzgerald Inquiry into Queensland police corruption and would help the Crime and Corruption Commission to better observe the force's handling of complaints against officers.

Australian Associated Press