Showing posts with label corruption. Show all posts
Showing posts with label corruption. Show all posts

Friday, 11 August 2017

Water rorting continues in the Murray-Darling Basin aided and abetted by the NSW Nationals


And local government and commercial interests in the Murray-Darling Basin have the hide to cry that they are water deprived and should be allowed to dam and divert water from the Clarence River catchment until that coastal system is a pale shadow of its vibrant self.

The Guardian, 4 August 2017:

The New South Wales regional water minister, Niall Blair, has quietly granted himself the power to approve illegal floodplain works retrospectively.

A Wentworth Group scientist, Jamie Pittock, has accused the NSW government of actively undermining the Murray-Darling basin plan as revelations have continued about the state government’s management of the river system.

Since Four Corners report raised allegations of water theft and secret meetings between a senior NSW water bureaucrat and a small number of irrigators,Blair is under increasing pressure over his water responsibilities.

This followed Daily Telegraph reports that the Nationals MP had been urging his Liberal colleague, the environment minister, Gabrielle Upton, to change the Barwon-Darling water-sharing plan retrospectively to favour large irrigators. He said the change was needed because of an error in the rules.

It has now come to light that Blair gazetted a Barwon-Darling valley floodplain management plan which gives him power to approve flood works built illegally even if they do not comply with requirements prior to the plan.

Under clause 39 of the new Barwon-Darling valley plan, a flood work that does not comply can be approved if “in the minister’s opinion” it is for an access road, a supply channel, a stock refuge or an infrastructure protection work
.
A spokesman for WaterNSW said three relevant applications from the Barwon-Darling region had been received since the change but none had yet been approved.

The NSW Greens MLC Jeremy Buckingham called on the NSW premier, Gladys Berejiklian, to remove the water portfolio from the National party after the regulation changes came to light.

“This is disgraceful example of the National party giving away free water to their big irrigator mates,” Buckingham said. “Many of these areas are so flat that even a 10 to 20cm bank can divert a huge amount of water into an irrigation dam and away from natural waterways.

“It’s a massive gift of water to the big irrigators. If we want to recover the water in the future then taxpayer will have to hand over huge amounts of compensation for what were illegal constructions.”

A spokeswoman for Blair said the gazettal was a “significant legacy issue” required to create a process where unapproved works could be properly and transparently assessed. She said to be considered, works must not have been previously refused and would still need to be assessed under certain criteria.

“Supply channels are one of the types of existing works that clause 39 indicates that we will accept application for,” the spokeswoman said. “Just because they are existing, doesn’t mean that they will be approved, just that they can apply. This approach is being rolled out through all floodplain management plans.”

Pittock, an associate professor in the Fenner school of environment and society at the Australian National University, said the revelations showed NSW was systematically white-anting the Murray Darling plan.

“The ‘rule error’ and other questionable dealings between wealthy irrigators, government officials and politicians in NSW highlight how the intent of the basin plan can be frustrated by those hostile to its implementation at the state level,” he told Guardian Australia.

“Changes of regulations in NSW have allowed irrigators to take erstwhile environmental flows by allowing greater pump capacity and earlier extraction based on river heights such that commonwealth-purchased environmental water in Queensland in not ‘shepherded’ through New South Wales to the lower Murray.

“Consequently towns like Broken Hill, pastoralists and Aboriginal communities, as well as the environment, have been starved of water.

Friday, 4 August 2017

The Trouble With Water: not a good look for the National Party of Australia



On 1 June 2017 former NSW Minister for Natural Resources, Lands and Water (23 April 2014 - 2 April 2015) and current Nationals MP for Barwon, Kevin Humphries, announced that he will retire at the next state election in March 2019.

In the wake of the 24 July ABC “Four Corners” revelations of large-scale water theft under the Murray-Darling Basin Plan, Humphries has been referred to the NSW Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC) by the Labor Opposition.

Hot on the heels of this program came another announcement on 31 July 2017.

Former NSW Minister for Primary Industries (3 April 2011 - 2 April 2015) with responsibility for lands & water and current Nationals MP for Cootamundra, Katrina Hodgkinson, announced her retirement effective mid to late August 2017.

Hodgkinson denies any connection between her sudden retirement and those Four Corners revelations.

However it should be noted that it was on the joint watch of Humphries and Hodgkinson that the position of NSW Water Commissioner responsible for the overall management of the State’s surface water and groundwater resources was axed and the NSW Office of Water was reformed as part of the Dept. of Primary Industry maintaining overall responsibility for accepting and assessing applications to change water access licences and operating the Water Access Licence Register.

High volume water theft appears to have become easier on the watch of these two National Party politicians.

All that would be needed for a trifecta of retiring state politicians associated with water resource policy would be for the current NSW Minister for Primary Industry, Minister for Regional Water and Nationals MLC, Niall Blair, to announce an unexpected desire to spend more time with his family and pursue other interests.

Any further scandal surrounding the management water resources in the NSW section of the Murray-Darling Basin and this may well be a distinct possibility - or even more media coverage like this perhaps?

The Daily Telegraph, 2 August 2017:

A NATIONALS minister is pushing Cabinet colleagues to change irrigation laws to retrospectively justify a decision by his department to give a major political donor and cotton farmer more rights over the precious Barwon-Darling River.

The Daily Telegraph can reveal that Primary Industries Minister Niall Blair is behind a push to alter an element of the Barwon-Darling Water Sharing Plan.

It comes after his department in 2016 overruled what it called “minor” error in the law to grant extra irrigation rights to Brewarrina cotton farmer Peter Harris.

A department briefing, seen by The Daily Telegraph, said the error was impacting on “some users wishing to trade between river sections covered by the plan”.

The briefing was written shortly after Mr Harris was given extra rights.

Mr Harris gave $10,000 to the National Party prior to the 2011 election in combined personal donations and those made by his company.

Its understood an internal Coalition fight has broken out between Mr Blair and current Water Minister Gabrielle Upton , who is resisting the changes. The revelations come as several inquiries have been launched into the alleged water theft on an industrial scale of precious resources across the basin…….

The Daily Telegraph has obtained another document showing that the retiring Ms Hodgkinson changed the water sharing plan to benefit irrigators after lobbying. She was water minister at the time.

In a 2012 letter to lobbyist and cotton farmer Ian Cole, Ms Hodgkinson wrote: “Following consideration of a number of WSP (water sharing plan) matter raised with me, I ­requested the Office of Water to make several amendments which I believe now present a fair and equitable outcome for all.”

The Minister for the Environment and Liberal MP for Vaucluse Gabrielle Upton's obvious reluctance may be due to her appreciation of a change in wind direction within the national electorate on the subject of Murray-Darling Basin water allocations.

The present Deputy Prime Minister and Australian Water Minister, Barnaby Joyce, is also in a somewhat precarious position – less to do with his manifest inadequacy as a federal minister and more to do with his stated motives for seeking to add the water ministry to his portfolio responsibilities.

Cartoonist David Rowe at Financial Review

Tuesday, 1 August 2017

And so the spotlight hovers over Australian Deputy Prime Minister Barnaby Joyce and NSW Regional Water Minister Niall Blair......


When both the NSW Coalition Government (2 April 2015) and Federal Coalition Government (21 September 2015) gave a minister dual responsibility for agriculture and water one could almost hear the political train careening wildly in the distance.

Unfortunately two years later the people of Australia woke to discover that handing over responsibility for water in a complex major river system to two National Party MPs meant it was also a social, economic and environmental train wreck as well.

All the audits and investigations in the world will not unmake the disaster that the Murray-Darling Basin Plan has become under Barnaby Joyce and Niall Blair unless the political will is there, however this is a good start.

"The Auditor-General will investigate how Barnaby Joyce's Dept is monitoring use of environmental water by NSW." [@Tony_Burke]

In an effort to wrest back control of the situation Prime Minister Turnbull has reportedly 
ordered the Murray Darling Basin Authority to conduct an allegedly ndependent basin-wide review into compliance with state-based regulations governing water use. The review report will be presented to the December 2017 Council of Australian Government (COAG) meeting.

Thursday, 18 May 2017

How is Trump faring under the weight of six separate investigations?


The U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has been investigating Russia’s involvement in the U.S. presidential campaign since July 2016 and in December that year the U.S. Office Of National Intelligence began a review of Russian activities and intentions in recent U.S. elections (report). 

The U.S. Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) reportedly began an investigation into Russia’s potential meddling in the US election last year as well.

In January 2017 the U.S. Senate Intelligence Committee began an ongoing investigation into Russian involvement in the 2016 election campaign.

By March 2017 the U.S. Senate Committee on the Judiciary’s Subcommittee on Crime and Terrorism had commenced hearings in an investigation into “Russian Interference in the 2016 United States Election”.

In addition to this it is reported that U.S. Treasury Department’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network is investigating payments involving Trump campaign advisor Paul Manafort and bank accounts in Cyprus related to money-laundering allegations and, that in April 2017 the Department of Defense Inspector General commenced an investigation to determine if Lieutenant General (Retired) Flynn accepted payments in violation of the Emoluments Clause, implementing laws, Defense regulations, including payments from Russian entities.

UPDATE 10.13am 18 May 2017- matters are moving fairly quickly and the U.S. Full House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform has set a 9.30am 24 May 2017 hearing date to investigate if President Trump interfered in an FBI probe and, earlier today Associated Press reported:

7:30 p.m. [US Eastern Daylight Time, 17 May]
Former FBI Director Robert Mueller says he accepts the responsibility of being appointed as a special counsel to oversee a federal investigation into potential coordination between Russia and the Trump campaign to influence the 2016 election.
In a short statement, Mueller says, “I accept this responsibility and will discharge it to the best of my ability.”
His law firm, WilmerHale, says he resigned immediately upon his Wednesday appointment by the Justice Department. Spokespeople declined to comment further.
The appointment came amid a growing Democratic outcry for someone outside the Justice Department to handle the politically charged investigation.
It follows the revelation Tuesday that fired FBI Director James Comey wrote in a memo that Trump had asked him to end an investigation into former national security adviser Michael Flynn. End of update.

U.S. President Donald Trump’s public reaction to these investigations has been confined to furious tweeting and disjointed justifications in the odd speech or interview. Although his peremptory sacking of three bureaucrats, New York Federal Prosecutor Bharara, Acting U.S. Attorney General Yates and FBI Director Comey, also appears related to the fact that the investigations are just not going away.

On 12 May 2017 a beleaguered Trump released this one-page letter from a law firm1 while once again tweeting that the story was fabricated. The letter has a narrow focus on transactions listed in his personal tax returns as it tries to avoid the elephant in the room:
1. MOSCOW, May 2, 2016: Morgan Lewis has been recognized by Chambers & Partners’ 2016 Chambers Europe guide as Russia Law Firm of the Year. The prestigious honor was announced at the publication’s recent annual awards dinner in London, where firms from 24 countries were recognized. See: https://www.morganlewis.com/news/chambers-partners-names-morgan-lewis-as-russia-law-firm-of-the-year

The Wall Street Journal reported on 12 May 2017:          
A unit of the U.S. Treasury Department that fights money laundering will provide financial records to an investigation by the Senate into possible ties between Russia and President Donald Trump and his associates, the Wall Street Journal reported on Friday, citing people familiar with the matter.
The Senate Intelligence Committee asked for the records from the Treasury’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network late last month, the Journal cited the people as saying.
One person said the records were needed to decide whether there was collusion between Trump associates and Russia during the 2016 campaign, the Journal said.

Media outlets in Britain and the United States have also been hunting for information and been joined by a Dutch film company whose 1:22hr made-for-television documentary, The Dubious Friends of Donald Trump - Parts 1 & 2, became available on the Internet this month.

On 10 October 2016 Forbes published an article which featured one of the individuals found in that documentary:

Felix Sater is not a name that has come up much during the presidential campaign. That he has a colorful past is an understatement: The Russian-born Sater served a year in prison for stabbing a man in the face with a margarita glass during a bar fight, pleaded guilty to racketeering as part of a mafia-driven "pump-and-dump" stock fraud and then escaped jail time by becoming a highly valued government informant.

He was also an important figure at Bayrock, a development company and key Trump real estate partner during the 2000s, notably with the Trump SoHo hotel-condominium in New York City, and has said under oath that he represented Trump in Russia and subsequently billed himself as a senior Trump advisor, with an office in Trump Tower…..
It wouldn't have taken much vetting to get the scoop on Sater. FORBES retained a highly regarded global-risk-assessment firm to conduct a background check, using only what was available to it in 2007--the year the Trump-Bayrock relationship was promoted. The investigative firm (it asked not to be named for fear of political repercussions) discovered many facts that we're revealing here and others that have come out before, including felony convictions and organized crime ties. Such due diligence on Sater could have been done for $5,000.

In April 2017 The Wall Street Journal reported that former Bayrock manager, USSR-born Sater and wealthy, Kazakhstan-born property developer and Bayrock principal Tevfik Arif are in a nasty legal dispute that has Sater suggesting he could publicize the other’s controversial past—and warning that the bad headlines could tarnish the president.

Trump is a former partner in certain relevant business ventures involving Bayrock, Arif and Sater - including Bayrock being an investor in Trump SoHo in 2005. Trump and unnamed co-defendents settled a case involving alleged fraud related to the sale of SoHo condos in 2011.

 In 2008 Donald Trump Jr publicly admitted these links to Russian financing:

And in terms of high-end product influx into the US, Russians make up a pretty disproportionate cross-section of a lot of our assets; say in Dubai, and certainly with our project in SoHo and anywhere in New York. We see a lot of money pouring in from Russia. There’s indeed a lot of money coming for new-builds and resale reflecting a trend in the Russian economy and, of course, the weak dollar versus the ruble”.

In March 2017 in Richard Roe et al v United States et al a motion to intervene was lodged in an attempt to have the court unseal judicial records in part on the grounds:

 “To seek to vindicate the public’s right of access to the record in this proceeding, which includes documents critical to understanding a story of pressing political consequence: President Donald Trump’s connection to Felix H. Sater, who is well known as a conduit to Russian oligarchs and organized crime”.

So how is President Trump coping with information coming out of either these six U.S. investigations or civil court cases and the resultant media storm?

Trump is quoted as telling three Time magazine journalists that “I’m now consumed by news.” He is also various described in mainstream media as being frustrated, visibly angry or seething with rage, as well as complaining in a Fox News
interview of “a level of hostility that’s in­cred­ible, and it’s very unfair.”

Calls for Trump's impeachment are beginning to mount.

BACKGROUND
These are two of the matters Treasury has investigated previously with regard to Donald Trump.
United States Department of Treasury, Financial Crimes Enforcement Network, media release, 6 March 2015:
WASHINGTON, DC – The Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) today imposed a $10 million civil money penalty against Trump Taj Mahal Casino Resort (Trump Taj Mahal), for willful and repeated violations of the Bank Secrecy Act (BSA). In addition to the civil money penalty, the casino is required to conduct periodic external audits to examine its anti-money laundering (AML) BSA compliance program and provide those audit reports to FinCEN and the casino’s Board of Directors.
Trump Taj Mahal, a casino in Atlantic City, New Jersey, admitted to several willful BSA violations, including violations of AML program requirements, reporting obligations, and recordkeeping requirements. Trump Taj Mahal has a long history of prior, repeated BSA violations cited by examiners dating back to 2003. Additionally, in 1998, FinCEN assessed a $477,700 civil money penalty against Trump Taj Mahal for currency transaction reporting violations.
"Trump Taj Mahal received many warnings about its deficiencies," said FinCEN Director Jennifer Shasky Calvery. "Like all casinos in this country, Trump Taj Mahal has a duty to help protect our financial system from being exploited by criminals, terrorists, and other bad actors. Far from meeting these expectations, poor compliance practices, over many years, left the casino and our financial system unacceptably exposed."
Trump Taj Mahal admitted that it failed to implement and maintain an effective AML program; failed to report suspicious transactions; failed to properly file required currency transaction reports; and failed to keep appropriate records as required by the BSA. Notably, Trump Taj Mahal had ample notice of these deficiencies as many of the violations from 2012 and 2010 were discovered in previous examinations.
Director Shasky Calvery expressed her appreciation to the Internal Revenue Service, Small Business/Self-Employed Division, which performed the examinations of Trump Taj Mahal, for their contributions to the investigation and for their strong partnership with FinCEN. She also thanked the Commercial Litigation Branch of the U.S. Department of Justice for their assistance with this enforcement action.
Trump Taj Mahal petitioned for bankruptcy in September 2014. That bankruptcy remains pending. The Bankruptcy Court approved of Trump Taj Mahal’s settlement on March 4, 2015.
FinCEN seeks to protect the U.S. financial system from being exploited by illicit actors. Its efforts are focused on compromised financial institutions; third-party money launderers; transnational organized crime; terrorist and other security threats; significant fraud; and threats to cyber security. FinCEN has a broad array of enforcement authorities to target both domestic and foreign actors affecting the U.S. financial system.
FinCEN's mission is to safeguard the financial system from illicit use and combat money laundering and promote national security through the collection, analysis, and dissemination of financial intelligence and strategic use of financial authorities.

NOTE: Trump Taj Mahal Associates, LLC ,Trump Entertainment Resorts, Inc., Trump Entertainment Resorts Holdings, L.P., Trump Plaza Associates, LLC, Trump Marina Associates, LLC, Trump Entertainment Resorts Development Company, LLC, TER Development Co., LLC, and TERH LP Inc. filed for bankruptcy protection on 9 September 2014 in the United States Bankruptcy Court in the District of Delaware (Bankr. Ct. Dist. Del. Case No. 11-12103 (KG.

United States Department of Treasury, Financial Crimes Enforcement Network, media release, 28 January 1998:

The Department of the Treasury’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) announced today that Trump Taj Mahal Associates (TTMA) has paid a civil money penalty of $477,000 for failing to file reports required by the Bank Secrecy Act (BSA). TTMA is located in Atlantic City, New Jersey, where it operates the Trump Taj Mahal Casino Resort.
The $477,000 settlement amount is for BSA violations which occurred at the casino from April 1990 through December 1991. The violations are based on failures to file Currency Transaction Report by Casino forms (CTRCs) within the time period prescribed by the BSA.TTMA was cited for these BSA violations as the result of an Internal Revenue Service (IRS)compliance examination.
Settlement of the final penalty amount was influenced by TTMA’s otherwise laudable BSA compliance programs and its cooperation with Treasury Department Officials during the casino’s IRS examination and final settlement of the matter with FinCEN.
During the 12 years that casinos have been required to comply with Treasury’s anti-money laundering requirements, the industry has experienced dramatic growth and expansion. Today, close to $500 billion a year is wagered at casinos in the United States.
In announcing the penalty, FinCEN’s Director Stanley E. Morris, indicated that BSA compliance by casinos is essential to Treasury’s efforts against money laundering and other types of financial crime. "It is Treasury’s intention to ensure that casinos -- including the ones located in the newer gaming jurisdictions -- are complying with Treasury’s preventive programs," Morris said. "Casinos are cash-intensive businesses, and many offer a wide variety of financial services, similar to banks. Without effective safeguards, they may be vulnerable to money laundering."
Director Morris also commended the IRS’s Examination unit in Mays Landing, NJ for its BSA examination of TTMA and its attention to BSA compliance by the casinos located in Atlantic City, NJ.
The BSA requires casinos and other financial institutions to file reports of cash transactions in excess of $10,000 and to institute preventive compliance programs to safeguard against abuse of its financial services by casino customers. The reporting and recordkeeping information required by the BSA are extremely useful to the government’s efforts in criminal, tax and regulatory investigations and proceedings.
Today’s penalty is the twelfth levied by Treasury against casinos in Atlantic City, New Jersey (NJ). With this penalty, Treasury has collected almost $2.2 million in civil penalties against the 12 casinos in Atlantic City over the past five years.

Friday, 28 April 2017

A Russian government think tank controlled by Vladimir Putin developed a plan to swing the 2016 U.S. presidential election to Donald Trump


Reuters, 19 April 2017:

(Reuters) - A Russian government think tank controlled by Vladimir Putin developed a plan to swing the 2016 U.S. presidential election to Donald Trump and undermine voters’ faith in the American electoral system, three current and four former U.S. officials told Reuters.

They described two confidential documents from the think tank as providing the framework and rationale for what U.S. intelligence agencies have concluded was an intensive effort by Russia to interfere with the Nov. 8 election. U.S. intelligence officials acquired the documents, which were prepared by the Moscow-based Russian Institute for Strategic Studies [en.riss.ru/], after the election.

The institute is run by retired senior Russian foreign intelligence officials appointed by Putin’s office.

The first Russian institute document was a strategy paper written last June that circulated at the highest levels of the Russian government but was not addressed to any specific individuals.

It recommended the Kremlin launch a propaganda campaign on social media and Russian state-backed global news outlets to encourage U.S. voters to elect a president who would take a softer line toward Russia than the administration of then-President Barack Obama, the seven officials said.

A second institute document, drafted in October and distributed in the same way, warned that Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton was likely to win the election. For that reason, it argued, it was better for Russia to end its pro-Trump propaganda and instead intensify its messaging about voter fraud to undermine the U.S. electoral system’s legitimacy and damage Clinton’s reputation in an effort to undermine her presidency, the seven officials said.

The current and former U.S. officials spoke on the condition of anonymity due to the Russian documents’ classified status. They declined to discuss how the United States obtained them. U.S. intelligence agencies also declined to comment on them.

Putin has denied interfering in the U.S. election. Putin’s spokesman and the Russian institute did not respond to requests for comment.

The documents were central to the Obama administration's conclusion that Russia mounted a “fake news” campaign and launched cyber attacks against Democratic Party groups and Clinton's campaign, the current and former officials said.

“Putin had the objective in mind all along, and he asked the institute to draw him a road map,” said one of the sources, a former senior U.S. intelligence official.

Trump has said Russia’s activities had no impact on the outcome of the race. Ongoing congressional and FBI investigations into Russian interference have so far produced no public evidence that Trump associates colluded with the Russian effort to change the outcome of the election.

Four of the officials said the approach outlined in the June strategy paper was a broadening of an effort the Putin administration launched in March 2016. That month the Kremlin instructed state-backed media outlets, including international platforms Russia Today and Sputnik news agency, to start producing positive reports on Trump’s quest for the U.S. presidency, the officials said.

Russia Today did not respond to a request for comment. A spokesperson for Sputnik dismissed the assertions by the U.S. officials that it participated in a Kremlin campaign as an “absolute pack of lies.” “And by the way, it's not the first pack of lies we're hearing from 'sources in U.S. official circles'," the spokesperson said in an email.

Pro-Kremlin Bloggers…..

The report said Russia Today and Sputnik “consistently cast president elect-Trump as the target of unfair coverage from traditional media outlets."…..

Cyber Attacks

Neither of the Russian institute documents mentioned the release of hacked Democratic Party emails to interfere with the U.S. election, according to four of the officials. The officials said the hacking was a covert intelligence operation run separately out of the Kremlin.

The overt propaganda and covert hacking efforts reinforced each other, according to the officials. Both Russia Today and Sputnik heavily promoted the release of the hacked Democratic Party emails, which often contained embarrassing details.

Five of the U.S. officials described the institute as the Kremlin’s in-house foreign policy think tank……..

Read the full article here.

Thursday, 23 February 2017

Adani Mining Pty Ltd: allegations of "black money" and environmental degradation


“The Indian government’s Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI) is currently investigating a number of Adani Group entities, including Adani Enterprises Ltd (AEL), which is the ultimate holding company of Adani Mining Pty Ltd, the proponent of the Carmichael Mine, for illegally overvaluing imports of coal and capital equipment in order to siphon funds offshore, a practice that creates “black money.” A detailed report from a reliable media source also indicates that for more than a decade the DRI has also been investigating Adani Group entities for tax evasion and money laundering whilst trading in diamonds.”  



Major Reports, February 2017:

The Adani Brief
If it proceeds, the Adani Group’s Carmichael Coal Mine and Rail Project in the Galilee Basin in Queensland will be among the largest new coalmines in the world. The associated rail infrastructure and expansion of the coal export terminal at Port of Abbot Point adjacent to Queensland’s Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area would facilitate the shipping of coal through the Great Barrier Reef’s waters from the Carmichael Mine.
The Adani Brief: What governments and financiers need to know about the Adani Group’s record overseas suggests that governments and private stakeholders should give serious consideration to:
* the Adani Group’s global legal compliance record which demonstrates numerous serious breaches with adverse consequences for the environment and local people; and
* the possibility that if this track record continues in Australia, then supporting the Adani Group’s Carmichael Mine and the Abbot Point Port may expose governments and private  
  stakeholders to reputational and financial risks.

Read The Adani Brief (PDF, 1.53MB)
Report/submission Type:  
Topics:  

Saturday, 11 February 2017

There would be a particularly nervous class of Australian investors right now - perhaps even Mr. Harbourside Mansion himself


The Guardian, 11 February 2017:

The founders of Mossack Fonseca, the law firm at the centre of the Panama Papers scandal, were arrested in Panama City on Thursday as the country’s attorney general launched a probe into their alleged connections with Brazil’s sprawling Lava Jato corruption scandal.

Juergen Mossack and his colleague Ramon Fonseca, a former adviser to Panama’s president Juan Carlos Varela, were taken into custody and transferred to police cells in the capital overnight for further questioning on Friday, their defence attorney Elías Solano was quoted telling reporters.

Panamanian prosecutors raided the offices of Mossack Fonseca on Thursday. In a press conference on Kenia Porcell, Panama’s attorney general, said she had information that identified Mossack Fonseca “allegedly as a criminal organisation that is dedicated to hiding money assets from suspicious origins”. 

She said the firm’s Brazilian representative had allegedly been instructed to conceal documents and to remove evidence of illegal activities related to the Lava Jato case.

“Put simply, the money comes from bribes, circulated via certain corporate entities to return bleached or washed to Panama,” said Porcell. She explained charges had been formulated against four individuals, including the Mossack Fonseca partners. 

Porcell thanked the authorities in Brazil, Ecuador, Colombia, Peru, Switzerland and the United States for their part in a collaboration which she said began over a year ago.

The Panama Papers, which consist of millions of documents belonging to Mossack Fonseca and leaked in April 2016, provoked a global scandal after showing how the rich and powerful used offshore corporations to avoid paying taxes.


Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull's merchant bank Turnbull & Partners received an estimated $3 million in 1995 and 1996 from the sales of shares held through offshore companies administered by notorious Panama law firm Mossack Fonseca.

Turnbull & Partners received up to $7 million from share sales and advisory fees from Mr Turnbull's time as a director of a listed mining company, Star Mining, which had an interest in a Siberian gold deposit.

Documents obtained by The Australian Financial Review, which first revealed Mr Turnbull's link to a Mossack Fonseca company last month, show heavy selling of Star Mining shares by offshore companies in 1995 after a series of favourable decisions by Russian politicians and bureaucrats boosted the Star Mining share price.

One of the key figures who helped obtain Star's Siberian  mining leases, Ludmila Melnikoff, accuses Star director Ian MacNee, who died in 2008, of paying bribes of more than $US2 million to secure these decisions.

Friday, 2 December 2016

Former Queensland LNP politician found guilty of fraud


What started with this……


CITATION:
Hockings v Queensland Retail Traders and Shopkeepers Association (Industrial Organization of Employers) [2014] QIRC 037
PARTIES:
Hockings, John Norman
(Applicant)
v
Queensland Retail Traders and Shopkeepers Association (Industrial Organization of Employers)
(Respondent)
CASE NO:
B/2013/18
PROCEEDING:
Application to re-open proceedings
DELIVERED ON:
19 February 2014
HEARING DATES:
12 and 26 April 2013
30 May 2013
MEMBER:
Deputy President Bloomfield
ORDERS :
1.  Matter No. RIO/2012/155 be re-opened on the Commission's own initiative.
2.  Orders in Matter No. RIO/2012/155, issued on 10 September 2012 and formalised on 5 December 2012, be vacated.
3.  Mr Scott and Mrs Emma Driscoll be referred to the Queensland Police Service for investigation.
4.  Mr  Scott Driscoll  be referred to the Speaker of Queensland Parliament for possibly misleading Parliament.
Ended with this…….

Brisbane Times, 25 November 2016:

Former Queensland politician Scott Driscoll has admitted to soliciting thousands of dollars in secret commissions and falsifying records during his term as the Member for Redcliffe.

Driscoll was expected to stand trial in the Brisbane District Court next week but on Friday pleaded guilty to 15 charges, including fraud.

The 41-year-old was released on bail and is due to be sentenced next year on March 6.

The former Liberal National Party MP won office in the Newman government's landslide in the March 2012 election victory.

Driscoll resigned in disgrace from State Parliament in November 2013for misleading the House about his financial interests and his role in the Queensland Retail Traders and Shopkeepers Association.

A year later, Driscoll was charged by the Crime and Corruption Commission for soliciting secret commissions worth at least $400,000 on behalf of the QRTSA from Wesfarmers and Woolworths in October 2012 while he was in office……

Driscoll did not speak to the media as he left the court with his wife Emma, who was sentenced in September to three years jail, wholly suspended, for multiple counts of falsifying a record and making a false declaration.

Tuesday, 18 October 2016

NSW ICAC Operation Cavill: former NSW Liberal MP for Gladesville & former Ryde Mayor committal hearing on charges of blackmail and misconduct in public office


The Sydney Morning Herald, 16 October 2016:

A former Liberal state MP and Sydney mayor will face court on Monday to determine if he should be committed to stand trial for blackmail and misconduct in public office.
Ivan Petch was Ryde mayor when, in 2012, a controversial redevelopment of the Ryde Civic Centre triggered a series of flash points that later became the subject of a two-week hearing by the Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC).
Mr Petch now faces a range of charges arising from the inquiry, including two counts of blackmail, misconduct in public office and giving false or misleading evidence to ICAC.
Mr Petch lashed out at the corruption watchdog last week for having "discoloured" his "whole career in one fell swoop".
"I have spent 37 years serving the people and, in that time, I have always acted in the interests of the community," he said. "I have stood by them all the way through."
After losing his state seat of Gladesville in the 1995 election to Labor's John Watkins by the narrow margin of 250 votes, Mr Petch became an independent councillor who went on to serve six terms as Ryde mayor.
However, in 2013, ICAC investigated Mr Petch over the alleged release of confidential council information "on many occasions for various reasons" but most notably to "undermine" council employees such as the former general manager John Neish.
During the inquiry, a phone tap was played of Mr Petch threatening to "destroy" Mr Neish. It emerged that, a short time later, sensitive material was leaked in a bid to discredit the council's head, after he refused to delay a high-rise residential redevelopment plan for council's ageing civic centre.
Mr Petch, who is charged with one count of misconduct in public office for allegedly releasing that material, has also been charged with "being an accessory before the fact of a count of blackmail" in relation to the alleged threat, for which property developer John Goubran is also facing a blackmail charge.
Mr Petch is also facing a separate charge of blackmail for allegedly attempting to improperly influence Mr Neish's acting replacement Danielle Dickson after her predecessor quit.
The then mayor allegedly threatened Ms Dickson that councillors, including himself, would block her application for the permanent position if she failed to resolve an ongoing Supreme Court costs dispute in their favour.
Mr Petch's three-day committal hearing will be heard in Sydney Local Court by Deputy Chief Magistrate Jane Mottley.

BACKGROUND

NSW Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC):


The ICAC investigated a number of allegations involving the former Mayor of the City of Ryde, Ivan Petch, and others, including the alleged release of confidential council information by Mr Petch on many occasions for various reasons, including in an attempt to undermine council employees, such as the former General Manager, Mr John Neish.
In its report on the investigation, made public on 30 June 2014, the Commission makes corrupt conduct findings against Mr Petch, John Goubran and Richard Henricus. The Commission is of the opinion that consideration should be given to obtaining the advice of the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) with respect to the prosecution of Mr Petch, Mr Goubran, Anthony Stavrinos, John Booth and Mr Henricus for various offences.
The ICAC is of the opinion that consideration should be given to obtaining the advice of the DPP also with respect to the prosecution of Mr Petch, councillors Justin Li, Jeffrey Salvestro-Martin, Terry Perram and former councillor Victor Tagg for offences under the Election Funding, Expenditure and Disclosures Act 1981 in relation to advertising published in The Weekly Times in August and September 2012. The Commission also recommends that the Office of Local Government gives consideration to disciplinary action against Mr Petch, with a view to his dismissal…..

Recommendations for prosecutions…..
The ICAC is of the opinion that the advice of the Director of Public Prosecutions should be obtained with respect to the prosecution of the following persons:
Ivan Petch
* The common law offence of misconduct in public office in relation to his handling of the discovery of adult material on Mr Neish's computer and his attempts to leak the material to the media.
* Five offences of giving false or misleading evidence pursuant to section 87 of the Independent Commission Against Corruption Act 1988 relating to the discovery of adult material on John Neish's computer.
* The common law offence of misconduct in public office in relation to his release of confidential advice from the Department of Planning and Infrastructure, and also internal Council emails concerning planning approvals.
* Making an unwarranted demand with menaces with the intention of influencing the exercise of a public duty pursuant to section 249K of the Crimes Act 1900 in relation to the approach to Danielle Dickson.
* Offences of accepting an indirect campaign contribution pursuant to section 96E of the Election Funding, Expenditure and Disclosures Act 1981 in relation to advertising published in The Weekly Times on 1, 7, 15, and 22 August 2012, and also 29 August and 5 September 2012.

Full report here.

Wednesday, 31 August 2016

NSW Independent Commission Against Corruption 'Operation Spicer': you saw the telemovie now read the book


The NSW Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC) investigation named Operation Spicer ran for approximately five months and claimed a number of political scalps including that of the then NSW Coalition Premier Barry O'Farrell.

Operation Spicer hearings were a feature of nightly news reports and journalists' live tweeting during this period.

Given the number of legal challenges mounted against ICAC since those hearings ended the final inquiry report has only now been released to the general public. 

In its media release of 30 August 2016 ICAC states:

Operation Spicer investigation has exposed prohibited donations, fund channelling and non-disclosures in the NSW Liberal Party’s 2011 state election campaign.

The Commission’s report, Investigation into NSW Liberal Party electoral funding for the 2011 state election campaign and other matters, was made public today. The ICAC’s findings include that Raymond Carter, Andrew Cornwell, Garry Edwards, the Hon Michael Gallacher MLC, Nabil Gazal Jnr, Nicholas Gazal, Hilton Grugeon, Christopher Hartcher, Timothy Koelma, Jeffrey McCloy, Timothy Owen, Christopher Spence, Hugh Thomson and Darren Williams acted with the intention of evading laws under the Election Funding, Expenditure and Disclosures Act 1981 (the election funding laws) relating to the disclosure of political donations and the ban on donations from property developers.

Messrs Grugeon, Hartcher, Koelma, McCloy, Owen, Thomson and Williams were also found to have acted with the intention of evading the election funding laws relating to caps on political donations. The Commission also found that Craig Baumann, Nicholas Di Girolamo, Troy Palmer and Darren Webber acted with the intention of evading the election funding laws relating to the disclosure of political donations and that Bart Bassett knowingly solicited a political donation from a property developer.

The ICAC found that during November and December 2010 the Free Enterprise Foundation was used to channel donations to the NSW Liberal Party for its 2011 state election campaign so that the identity of the true donors was disguised. A substantial portion of the $693,000 provided by the foundation and used by the NSW Liberal Party in the campaign originated from donors who were property developers and, therefore, prohibited donors under the election funding laws.

Undisclosed political donations were also channelled through a business, Eightbyfive, to benefit Liberal Party 2011 state election campaigns on the Central Coast. These donations included donations from property developers and donations in excess of the applicable caps on donations.

The ICAC also found that there were payments made by property developers, who were prohibited donors, to help fund NSW Liberal Party candidates’ campaigns in the Hunter. The true nature of these payments was disguised, for example, as consultancy services or funnelled through another company with the intention of evading the election funding laws.

The above are findings of fact, not findings of corrupt conduct. As explained in the Foreword to the report, the ICAC cannot make corrupt conduct findings in cases of failure to comply with the requirements of the election funding laws where, although those failures could have affected the exercise of official functions of the then Election Funding Authority of NSW, officers of that authority were not involved in any wrongdoing.

The ICAC makes a finding of serious corrupt conduct against Joseph Tripodi for, sometime prior to 16 February 2011, misusing his position as a member of Parliament to improperly provide an advantage to Buildev by providing to Darren Williams of that company a copy of the confidential 4 February 2011 NSW Treasury report, Review of Proposed Uses of Mayfield and Intertrade Lands at Newcastle Port.

The Commission’s report notes that at the relevant time proceedings for an offence under the election funding laws had to be commenced within three years from the time the offence was committed. As the Operation Spicer public inquiry did not conclude until September 2014, and the matters canvassed in the report occurred mostly from 2009 to 2011, a prosecution for relevant offences is now statute barred.


 Excerpt One:

Chapter 34 of this report contains statements made pursuant to s 74A(2) of the ICAC Act that the Commission is of the opinion that consideration should be given to obtaining the advice of the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) with respect to the prosecution of the following persons:

* Samantha Brookes for two offences of giving false or misleading evidence under s 87 of the ICAC Act • Andrew Cornwell for two offences of giving false or misleading evidence under s 87 of the ICAC Act [Wife of former Liberal MP for Charlestown Andrew Cornwell]

* Timothy Gunasinghe for an offence of giving false or misleading evidence under s 87 of the ICAC Act [GM /Director at Commercialhq]

* Christopher Hartcher for an offence of larceny [former Liberal MP for Terrigal & NSW Minister for State, Minister for Resources and Energy, Minister for Central Coast]

* Timothy Koelma for three offences of giving false or misleading evidence under s 87 of the ICAC Act [Proprietor, Eightbyfive]

* William Saddington for an offence of giving false or misleading evidence under s 87 of the ICAC Act [Director, PW Saddington & Sons Pty Ltd]

* Joseph Tripodi for the common law offence of misconduct in public office. [former Labor MP for Fairfield] 
Note: My red annotations

Excerpt Two:

Set out below are some of the principal factual findings made by the Commission.
* Sometime shortly prior to 16 March 2011, Nathan Tinkler offered to make a political donation to Jodi McKay’s election campaign. In making this offer, Mr Tinkler was attempting to induce Ms McKay to accept a donation from a person she knew to be a prohibited donor and which would be falsely disclosed to the Election Funding Authority as coming from private individuals. Mr Tinkler knew at the time he made the offer that he was a prohibited donor and was not able to make a political donation and that Ms McKay was not able to accept a political donation from him (chapter 11).
* Each of Mr Williams, David Sharpe and Ann Wills of Buildev played an active part in the “Stop Jodi’s Trucks” mailout campaign, which was designed to damage Ms McKay’s prospects of re-election. Given its inherent political nature, the expenditure on the leaflets amounted to “electoral communication expenditure”, as defined by the Election Funding Act. This expenditure was incurred in the period between 1 January 2011 and the end of the polling day for the 2011 NSW state election and was therefore incurred within the “capped expenditure period” as defined in s 95H of the Election Funding Act. As the electoral communication expenditure exceeded $2,000 in a capped expenditure period, Buildev was operating as a “third-party campaigner” as defined in s 4 of the Election Funding Act. Buildev failed to register as a third-party campaigner as required by s 96AA of the Election Funding Act and failed to disclose to the Election Funding Authority its electoral communication expenditure as required by s 88(1A)(a) of the Election Funding Act (chapter 11).
* Mr Tripodi played a central role in the Stop Jodi’s Trucks campaign by nominating the printer for the mailout pamphlets and involving himself in the drafting and design process for the pamphlets (chapter 11).
* During November and December 2010, the Free Enterprise Foundation was used to channel donations to the NSW Liberal Party for its 2011 NSW state election campaign so that the identity of the true donors was disguised. A substantial portion of the $693,000 provided by the Free Enterprise Foundation and used by the NSW Liberal Party in its 2011 state election campaign originated from donors who were property developers and, therefore, prohibited under the Election Funding Act from making political donations (chapter 15).
* Each of Simon McInnes, Paul Nicolaou and Anthony Bandle knowingly used the Free Enterprise Foundation to channel political donations, including political donations from property developers, to the NSW Liberal Party to fund its 2011 state election campaign so that the identity of the true donors was disguised from the Election Funding Authority (chapter 15).
* Timothy Koelma used his business, Eightbyfive, to receive and channel political donations for the benefit of Christopher Hartcher, Christopher Spence, Darren Webber and the NSW Liberal Party for the 2011 Central Coast election campaign with the intention of evading the election funding laws relating to disclosure of political donations, the ban on donations from property developers, which operated from 14 December 2009, and, in relation to payments made after 1 January 2011, the applicable cap on donations. The funds obtained and channelled in this way were used for the purposes of the NSW Liberal Party 2011 election campaigns in the seats of Terrigal, The Entrance and Wyong. Mr Koelma directly benefited from the donations through Eightbyfive, as he was able to draw from those funds to give himself a salary, thereby, enabling him to work for Mr Hartcher on the 2011 NSW state election campaign. Mr Koelma subsequently obtained full-time employment in Mr Hartcher’s ministerial office after the 2011 election (chapter 17).
* Mr Hartcher was involved in the establishment of Eightbyfive and took an active part in using Eightbyfive to channel political donations from Australian Water Holdings Pty Ltd, Gazcorp Pty Ltd and Patinack Farm Pty Ltd for the benefit of the NSW Liberal Party, himself, Mr Spence and Mr Webber with the intention of evading the election funding laws relating to disclosure of political donations, the ban on donations from property developers (in the case of Gazcorp) and, in relation to payments made after 1 January 2011, the applicable cap on donations. Mr Hartcher benefited from this arrangement because part of the funds channelled through Eightbyfive enabled Mr Koelma to work for him on the 2011 NSW state election campaign at no cost to Mr Hartcher, while other funds channelled through Eightbyfive ensured that Mr Hartcher’s likeminded political colleagues were funded to campaign for the Central Coast seats of Wyong and The Entrance (chapter 17).
* Mr Hartcher was a party to an arrangement with Nicholas Di Girolamo and Mr Koelma, whereby Mr Di Girolamo made regular payments through Australian Water Holdings to Eightbyfive. Under this arrangement, between April 2009 and May 2011, Eightbyfive received $183,342.50 from Australian Water Holdings. These payments were ostensibly for the provision of services by Eightbyfive to Australian Water Holdings but were in fact political donations made to assist Mr Hartcher by providing funds to Mr Koelma so that Mr Koelma could work for Mr Hartcher in the lead up to the 2011 NSW state election. Mr Hartcher and the others involved in this arrangement intended to evade the election funding laws relating to the disclosure of political donations. The payments totalling $36,668.50, made after 1 January 2011, exceeded the applicable cap on political donations (chapter 18).
* Mr Hartcher, Nabil Gazal Junior, Nicholas Gazal, Mr Koelma and Mr Spence (the NSW Liberal Party candidate for the seat of The Entrance) were parties to an arrangement whereby, between May 2010 and April 2011, Gazcorp made payments totalling $121,000 to Eightbyfive. These payments were ostensibly for the provision of services by Eightbyfive to Gazcorp but were in fact political donations which were mainly used to help fund Mr Spence so that he could work on the Central Coast election campaign and on his campaign for the seat of The Entrance. Mr Hartcher, Nabil Gazal Jnr, Nicholas Gazal, Mr Koelma and Mr Spence intended by this arrangement to evade the disclosure requirements of the Election Funding Act and the ban on the making and accepting of political donations from property developers. The payments totalling $33,000, made after 1 January 2011, exceeded the applicable cap on political donations (chapter 19).
* Mr Hartcher, Mr Koelma, the Hon Michael Gallacher MLC, Troy Palmer and Mr Williams were parties to an arrangement whereby, between July 2010 and March 2011, Patinack Farm made payments totalling $66,000 to Eightbyfive. These payments were ostensibly for the provision of services by Eightbyfive to Patinack Farm but were in fact political donations to help fund the NSW Liberal Party 2011 Central Coast election campaign. The parties to this arrangement intended to evade the disclosure requirements of the Election Funding Act. The payments made after 1 January 2011, totalling $33,000, exceeded the applicable caps on political donations. Although the payments to Eightbyfive were made by Patinack Farm, the arrangement was organised through Buildev, a property developer (chapter 20).
* Mr Koelma and Mr Webber (the NSW Liberal Party candidate for the seat of Wyong) were parties to an arrangement whereby, between 2010 and 2011, Mr Koelma’s business, Eightbyfive, made payments totalling at least $34,650, and up to $49,500, to Mr Webber. These payments were ostensibly for the provision of services by Mr Webber to Eightbyfive but were in fact political donations to help fund Mr Webber’s 2011 election campaign for the seat of Wyong. The parties to this arrangement intended to evade the disclosure requirements of the Election Funding Act. The payments made after 1 January 2011 exceeded the applicable caps on political donations (chapter 20).
* Raymond Carter used the Free Enterprise Foundation to channel political donations to the NSW Liberal Party for its 2011 NSW state election campaign so that the identity of the true donor was disguised from the Election Funding Authority. A portion of this money was from property developers (chapter 21).
* Mr Carter and Mr Koelma entered into an arrangement to use Mr Koelma’s business, Eightbyfive, to channel political donations to the NSW Liberal Party for the 2011 Central Coast election campaign with the intention of evading the Election Funding Act laws relating to disclosure to the Election Funding Authority of political donations and the ban on accepting political donations from property developers. The political donations obtained by Mr Carter under this scheme included $5,000 from each of LA Commercial Pty Ltd, Yeramba Estates Pty Ltd and Brentwood Village Pty Ltd, and $2,200 from Crown Consortium Pty Ltd (chapter 21).
* In March 2011, Mr Carter used a business, Mickey Tech, with the intention of evading the Election Funding Act laws relating to disclosure of political donations by disguising from the Election Funding Authority political donations of $2,000 from INE Pty Ltd and $2,000 from Maggiotto Building Pty Ltd. In each case, the money was sought and received by Mr Carter as a political donation for the 2011 NSW state election campaign. Although at the time Mr Carter received the money he intended to apply all the money for the purposes of the election campaign, he eventually only applied $2,400 for this purpose, the balance being applied to private use (chapter 21).
* In March 2011, Mr Hartcher received three bank cheques payable to the NSW Liberal Party totalling $4,000. They were received by Mr Hartcher for the benefit of the NSW Liberal Party for the March 2011 state election campaign. In November 2011, some eight months after the election, Mr Hartcher arranged for the cheques to be paid into the trust account of Hartcher Reid, a legal firm, and for that firm to draw a cheque for $4,000 in favour of Mickey Tech, a business owned by Mr Carter’s partner. After the $4,000 was deposited into that account, it was withdrawn in cash by Mr Carter and given to Mr Hartcher. These steps are inconsistent with an intention on the part of Mr Hartcher to apply the $4,000 for the benefit of the NSW Liberal Party (chapter 23).
* In about November 2010, Mr Gallacher sought a political donation from Mr Sharpe of Buildev by inviting him to attend a New Year’s Eve political fundraising function for which Mr Sharpe or Buildev would make a payment. Mr Gallacher knew that they were property developers, and he sought the political donation with the intention of evading the election funding laws relating to the ban on property developers making political donations (chapter 25).
* In late 2010, Mr Gallacher, Mr Hartcher and Mr Williams of Buildev were involved in an arrangement whereby two political donations totalling $53,000 were provided to the NSW Liberal Party for use in its 2011 election campaigns for the seats of Newcastle and Londonderry. To facilitate this arrangement, on 13 December 2010, Mr Palmer, a director of Boardwalk Resources Limited, a company of which Mr Tinkler was the major shareholder, drew two cheques totalling $53,000 payable to the Free Enterprise Foundation. These were provided to Mr Hartcher who arranged for them to be sent to Mr Nicolaou. Mr Nicolaou sent the cheques to the Free Enterprise Foundation. The Free Enterprise Foundation subsequently sent money to the NSW Liberal Party, which included the $53,000. Of the $53,000, some $35,000 was used to help fund Timothy Owen’s 2011 election campaign in the seat of Newcastle and $18,000 was used towards the purchase of a key seats package for Bart Bassett’s 2011 election campaign in the seat of Londonderry. Although the cheques for the donations were drawn on the account of Boardwalk Resources, they were made for Buildev, a property developer. Each of Mr Gallacher, Mr Hartcher and Mr Williams entered into this arrangement with the intention of evading the Election Funding Act laws relating to the accurate disclosure to the Election Funding Authority of political donations (chapter 26).
* In about February 2011, Jeffrey McCloy gave HughThomson $10,000 in cash as a political donation to fund Mr Owen’s 2011 election campaign for the seat of Newcastle with the intention of evading the Election Funding Act laws relating to the ban on the making of political donations by property developers and the applicable cap on political donations. By not reporting the donation, he intended to evade the disclosure requirements of the Election Funding Act. In accepting the political donation, Mr Thompson intended to evade the Election Funding Act laws relating to the ban on accepting political donations from property developers and the applicable cap on political donations. By not ensuring the donation was disclosed, he intended to evade the disclosure requirements of the Election Funding Act (chapter 27).
* In early 2011, Mr McCloy gave Mr Owen $10,000 in cash as a political donation to fund Mr Owen’s 2011 election campaign. In making the payment, Mr McCloy intended to evade the Election Funding Act laws relating to the ban on the making of political donations by property developers and the applicable cap on political donations. By not reporting the donation, he intended to evade the disclosure requirements of the Election Funding Act. In accepting the political donation, Mr Owen intended to evade the Election Funding Act laws relating to the ban on accepting political donations from property developers and the applicable cap on political donations. By not ensuring the donation was disclosed, he intended to evade the disclosure requirements of the Election Funding Act (chapter 27).
* In early 2011, Hilton Grugeon gave Mr Thomson $10,000 in cash as a political donation to fund Mr Owen’s 2011 election campaign. In making the payment, Mr Grugeon intended to evade the Election Funding Act laws relating to the ban on the making of political donations by property developers and the applicable cap on political donations. By not reporting the donation, he intended to evade the disclosure requirements of the Election Funding Act. In accepting the political donation, Mr Thompson intended to evade the Election Funding Act laws relating to the ban on accepting political donations from property developers and the applicable cap on political donations. By not ensuring the donation was disclosed, he intended to evade the disclosure requirements of the Election Funding Act (chapter 27).
* Services provided by Mezzanine Media Australia Pty Ltd for Mr Owen’s 2011 election campaign were paid for, in part, by a political donation of $5,000 made by Keith Stronach, a property developer. The payment evaded the Election Funding Act laws relating to the ban on the making of political donations by property developers. The political donation was not disclosed as required by the Election Funding Act. Mr Owen and Mr Thomson were aware that Mr Stronach was a property developer and were aware that Mr Stronach paid money towards Mr Owen’s election campaign (chapter 27).
* Services provided by Mezzanine Media Australia for Mr Owen’s 2011 election campaign were paid for, in part, by a political donation of $14,190 organised by Mr Williams on behalf of Buildev, a property developer. In organising the payment, Mr  Williams intended to evade the Election Funding Act laws relating to the ban on the making of political donations by property developers and the applicable cap on political donations. By not reporting the donation he intended to evade the disclosure requirements of the Election Funding Act. Mr Owen and Mr Thomson were aware that Buildev was a property developer and that it had paid money towards Mr Owen’s election campaign (chapter 27).
* Mr Gallacher was responsible for proposing to Mr McCloy and Mr Grugeon an arrangement whereby each of them would contribute to the payment of Luke Grant for his work on Mr Owen’s 2011 election campaign. He did so with the intention that the Election Funding Act laws in relation to the prohibition on political donations from property developers and the requirements for the disclosure of political donations to the Election Funding Authority would be evaded (chapter 27).
* Mr Owen, Mr Thompson, Mr Grugeon and Mr McCloy were parties to an arrangement whereby payments totalling $19,875 made to Mr Grant for his work on Mr Owen’s 2011 election campaign were falsely attributed to services allegedly provided to companies operated by Mr McCloy and Mr Grugeon. Those involved in this arrangement intended to evade the Election Funding Act laws in relation to the prohibition on political donations from property developers and the requirements for the disclosure of political donations to the Election Funding Authority. The payments were also in excess of the caps imposed on individual donors (chapter 27).
* Services provided by Joshua Hodges for Mr Owen’s 2011 election campaign were paid for, in part, by a political donation of $3,998.50 made by William Saddington of PW Saddington & Sons Pty Ltd. The payment was disguised as being for consultancy services provided to that company. The payment had the effect of evading the disclosure requirements of the Election Funding Act. Mr Owen and Mr Thomson were aware that Mr Saddington was contributing to Mr Owen’s election campaign expenses by paying Mr Hodges. They did not ensure that the donation was disclosed as required by the Election Funding Act (chapter 27).
* Services provided by Australian Decal Sales and Manufacturing Co Pty Ltd for Mr Owen’s 2011 election campaign were paid for in August 2011 by a political donation of $3,198.80 organised by Mr Williams on behalf of Buildev, a property developer. By organising the payment, Mr Williams intended to evade the Election Funding Act laws relating to the ban on the making of political donations by property developers and the disclosure requirements of the Election Funding Act. Mr Owen and Mr Thomson were aware this political donation had been made by a property developer and participated in this arrangement with the intention of evading the Election Funding Act laws relating to the ban on accepting political donations from property developers. They did not ensure the donation was disclosed as required by the Election Funding Act (chapter 27).
* During the 2011 NSW state election campaign, a third-party campaign known as “FedUp” was conducted by Rolly De With, Neil Slater and Paul Murphy using the name of a local business association, the Newcastle Alliance. The purpose of the campaign was to assist in defeating the sitting member for the seat of Newcastle, Ms McKay, in the 2011 NSW state election. In March 2011, a payment of $50,000 was arranged by Mr Williams of Buildev and authorised by Mr Tinkler to fund the campaign. The payment was ostensibly made by Serene Lodge Racing Pty Ltd but was in fact money from Mr Tinkler and was made for Buildev, a property developer. The $50,000 payment was a political donation and was in excess of the $2,000 cap on political donations made for the benefit of a third-party campaigner. The political donation was not disclosed to the Election Funding Authority by Buildev, Serene Lodge Racing or Mr Tinkler (chapter 28).
* On 6 October 2010, Mr McCloy paid $10,000 in cash to Andrew Cornwell, the NSW Liberal Party candidate for the seat of Charlestown, as a political donation for Andrew Cornwell’s 2011 election campaign. By making the donation, Mr McCloy intended to evade the Election Funding Act laws relating to the ban on property developers making political donations and the requirement for the disclosure of political donations. By accepting the donation Andrew Cornwell intended to evade the Election Funding Act requirement relating to the ban on property developers making political donations and the requirement for the accurate disclosure of political donations (chapter 29).
* Andrew Cornwell, his wife, Samantha Brookes, and Mr Grugeon were parties to an arrangement involving the pretence that a payment of $10,120 made in early 2011 by Mr Grugeon, a property developer, was for a painting. The $10,120 was in fact a political donation made by Mr Grugeon to fund Andrew Cornwell’s 2011 NSW state election campaign. In participating in this arrangement, Mr Grugeon intended to evade the Election Funding Act laws relating to the ban on the making of donations by property developers and the requirement for disclosure of political donations. In participating in this arrangement, Andrew Cornwell intended to evade the Election Funding Act laws relating to the ban on accepting political donations from property developers, and the requirement for accurate disclosure of political donations received. The payment exceeded the applicable cap on political donations (chapter 29).
* During the 2011 NSW state election campaign, Garry Edwards, the NSW Liberal Party candidate for the seat of Swansea, received a political donation by way of a cash payment of about $1,500 from Mr McCloy, a property developer. Mr Edwards accepted the donation with the intention of evading the election funding laws relating to the ban on accepting political donations from property developers and the requirements for disclosure of political donations. Mr McCloy knew he was making a political donation and that, as a property developer, he was prohibited from making such a donation (chapter 30).
* In 2007, Craig Baumann, the NSW Liberal Party candidate for the seat of Port Stephens, entered into an arrangement with Mr McCloy and Mr Grugeon to disguise from the Election Funding Authority the fact that companies associated with Mr McCloy and Mr Grugeon had donated $79,684 towards Mr Baumann’s 2007 NSW election campaign. As part of this arrangement, a company associated with Mr McCloy made a political donation of $32,604 and a company associated with Mr Grugeon made a political donation of $47,080. These political donations were paid to Mr Baumann’s company, Mambare Pty Ltd, which, in turn, paid the money to the Medowie branch of the NSW Liberal Party to be used for Mr Baumann’s 2007 election campaign. Mr Baumann caused Mambare to lodge a declaration with the Election Funding Authority that falsely claimed that it had donated the money to the NSW Liberal Party. Mr Baumann did so with the intention of evading the election funding laws relating to the accurate disclosure of political donations (chapter 31).
* In about November 2010, Mr Baumann entered into an arrangement with Vincent Heufel with the intention of evading the Election Funding Act laws relating to the truthful disclosure of political donations. Under this arrangement, Mr Heufel made a donation of $100,000 for Mr Baumann’s election campaign and Mr Baumann reduced the amount his company, Mambare, charged for building Mr Heufel’s house by that amount. This was done so that Mr Heufel could falsely represent that he was responsible for making the political donation, rather than Mr Baumann’s company and so that Mambare could evade disclosing that it had made a political donation for Mr Baumann’s 2011 NSW state election campaign (chapter 31).
* In 2010, for the purposes of his 2011 NSW state election campaign, Mr Bassett, the NSW Liberal Party candidate for the seat of Londonderry, solicited a political donation from Buildev, a property developer. This culminated in the drawing of a cheque, dated 13 December 2010, for $18,000 on the account of Boardwalk Resources, which was payable to the Free Enterprise Foundation. The Free Enterprise Foundation subsequently sent money to the NSW Liberal Party, which included the $18,000. The $18,000 was used towards the purchase of a key seats package for Mr Bassett’s 2011 election campaign in the seat of Londonderry. Although the cheque for $18,000 was drawn on the account of Boardwalk Resources, the donation was made for Buildev. Mr Bassett was aware at the time he solicited the political donation that Buildev was a property developer and knew it was not able to make a political donation and he was not able to accept a political donation from a property developer (chapter 32).

Full 172 page report here.