RELEASED: Eric Fehlhaber.
RELEASED: Eric Fehlhaber.

VLAD laws hitting families as arrested boilermaker released

THE wife of North Arm boilermaker Eric Fehlhaber said he would be straight back at work on Monday after being released on bail yesterday following a week in jail under Queensland's controversial VLAD laws.

A relieved Mr Fehlhaber had the support of family members, including his parents, who flew from Mount Isa, brothers, sisters-in-law and their offspring, when he faced the court just over a week after his arrest at home last Thursday morning.

He had been charged with having been in the Yandina Hotel on November 1 last year in the company of other members of the Rebels Motorcycle Club.

Linda Fehlhaber said this week her world had been turned upside down since she woke to find police officers at the foot of her bed.

She took this week off work to try to come to terms with the financial impact the VLAD laws have had on their lives.

"We're subjected to a lot of financial stress to prove Eric's innocence,'' she said.

"The law costs a lot. I feel powerless. There is a lot of support around me since Eric was taken away but we didn't have a lawyer in the back pocket.

"Eric just stopped at the pub for a beer on the way home. We're taxpayers. We're just everyday Aussies.''

Mrs Fehlhaber's only contact with her husband since his arrest had been a 15-minute conversation last Friday and two minutes on Tuesday night which was allowed for them to resolve financial matters.

She said her husband had remained calm and was more focused on ensuring his family was okay and that work commitments were met than his own predicament.

Mrs Fehlhaber said claims by police that Rebel Club members meet to talk about criminal matters were ridiculous.

"Most of the time they talk about off-road racing. It's not that exciting,'' Mrs Fehlhaber said.

She said her husband had worked all day on November 1 last year when police allege he was in a public place with members of the Rebel Motorcycle Club.

"What has happened to us can happen to anyone,'' Mrs Fehlhaber said. "People can't ignore this.''

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