New generation of ‘idiot’ criminals
GOLD Coast criminals are boasting about their wrongdoings on the internet but their need for an ego boost is proving to be their undoing.
From advertising drugs on social media to posting videos of themselves committing traffic offences, it appears the increasingly common saying "pics or it didn't happen" applies to crimes too for some.
Police are playing Big Brother on the new generation of dumb criminals and are charging people as a result.
Queensland Law Society president Bill Potts said he was seeing a surge of offenders who made the job of police easy due to reckless posting.
"A large number of people are finding themselves before the courts because they are literally filming their own crimes," Mr Potts said.
"There have been cases for example of people posting photos of their own graffiti.
"You see people post photos of crimes they've committed or posting about things they can steal.
"They say a picture can paint a thousand words but in some cases maybe it instead creates a thousands days in prison."
The world map feature in Snapchat allows users to seemingly post anonymously from anywhere.
The Bulletin can reveal drug dealers are using the feature to advertise their stock.
This includes posting information about when and where interested buyers should go before deleting the photo.
Recent posts seen by the Bulletin include one Snapchat drug pusher promoting where buyers can find him at a Surfers Paradise hotel.
A Queensland Police Service spokeswoman said social network websites were regularly monitored for illegal activities.
"Investigators have the ability to track communications on social media, due to legislation which enables the collection of relevant data," the spokeswoman said.
"Police urge anyone who witnesses illegal online activity to report those incidents to Crime Stoppers or Policelink."
A man dubbed Gold Coast's own Spider-Man Scott Davis-Ingram was convicted for taking part in unregulated high-risk activities and trespass after he posted online selfies of himself on top roofs and ledges of some of the Gold Coast's tallest high rises.
A 21-year-old Gold Coast man was convicted of dangerous driving late last year after a video which circulated of him doing burnouts while a passenger had half his body out the window.
The court was told he did it for social media fame.
Another man before the courts allegedly used counterfeit money via a Facebook account with his real name to buy goods.
Comments made on popular online sites Facebook and Instagram are often referred to as evidence in domestic violence cases in court.
A woman was recently sentenced for stalking and unlawful use of a carriage service for making online sex ads as a form of revenge after her ex-lover ended their relationship.
Police were able to track her through her IP address.
There's also the Mexican Hoon Cartel - a Gold Coast group which has made a name for itself by performing illegal stunts on roads and uploading videos of them online.
Mr Potts said people took to social media to broadcast their crimes for the sake of their "ego" and "vanity."
"We're not talking about major league criminals - they're not criminal masterminds - they are opportunists, idiots," he said.
"This is why police are often so successful.
"They think they are being anonymous but police can track down people who don't want to be found."