Steve Gray

December 1, 2010 - 2:24PM


The Queensland government has admitted police are photographing participants engaged in peaceful protests against companies searching for gas deposits.

Last week, protesters outside the Brisbane offices of QGC (Queensland Gas Company) confronted a man taking photographs who then identified himself as a police officer.

Protest organiser Drew Hutton accused the police of a return to the days of the Joh Bjelke-Petersen government, when civil liberties were seriously curtailed, demonstrators intimidated, and police regularly photographed protesters.

Civil libertarians agree, and will refer the police action to Queensland's Crime and Misconduct Commission (CMC).

Police Minister Neil Roberts said the government was not involved in the incident.

"This is an operational matter for police with no involvement whatsoever from the government," Mr Roberts told AAP.

He said the Queensland Police Service told him that police do not routinely photograph people who were involved in peaceful protests.

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