This is a follow-up post to my last post which is titled “Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard’s criminal history and her hypocrisy with WikiLeaks and Julian Assange.” In that post I talked extensively about Julia Gillard helping her boyfriend steal over $1,000,000 from the Australian Workers Union. In hind-site it was a very timely post. If you have not read it I suggest you do as a large part of it ties in with this story. (Click here to read: Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard’s criminal history and her hypocrisy with WikiLeaks and Julian Assange.)
Most Australians would have heard of the Craig Thomson scandal by now as it very hard to miss of him being accused of stealing in total over $200,000 using the company credit card from the Health Services Union. And regular readers of this site will know that concealing a crime is a crime in itself, and that will be the focus of this post. Why? Because the cover-up covers the breadth of the Government and will go down in history as one of the great scandals, not because of what Craig Thomson did but because of the cover-up. It must be remembered this happened 4 years ago and to date nothing has happened.
The key players who are involved in the cover-up are the Prime Minister Julia Gillard, Health Services Union, Fair Work Australia, Senator Chris Evans, Senator Mark Arbib, Peter Hanks – QC, and probably the NSW Police.
Obviously I will have to outline what Craig Thomson did before we can focus on the cover-up. i will also put links to some stories for broader background.
2002: Craig Thomson is appointed Secretary of the Health Services Union
November 2007: Craig Thomson is elected to Federal Parliament for the seat of Dobell. Thanks Senator Mark Arbib in his maiden speech.
November – December 2007: Health Services Union withhold $191,000 in employee entitlements. (This is the real smoking gun that ties in the Union in the coverup, but I will get into that later)
April 2009: The Sydney Morning Herald publishes allegations that Thomson’s Health Services Union credit card was used to pay for prostitutes and to bankroll his election campaign. Thomson denies the allegations and launches a defamation suit against the paper. (From Crikey.com.au)
August 1 2011: Radio interview on 2UE with Mike Smith. Craig Thomson admits approving the payments for the prostitutes but says it was not him. He claims someone else must have forged his signature. Says another person paid back $15,000 to the Union but does not name the person.
August 19: The Sydney Morning Herald reports that bills and credit card statements they have obtained show that Thomson made calls to escort agencies from hotel rooms in Melbourne in April and June 2006.
In an article in the SMH on the 20th August 2011 by Peter Hartcher he says that the 3 key things that have brought the Craig Thomson affair to a head now are:
1. Thomson dropped his defamation action against Fairfax Media (the owner of the Sydney Morning Herald) 2. The radio interview with Mike Smith on 2UE. and 3. “News Ltd papers reported that the NSW branch of the Labor Party had given Thomson a loan of $90,000 to pay his legal bills in running the defamation case against Fairfax.” (Read more at: http://bit.ly/npO5MA)
Health Services Union
The Health Services Union have been sitting on this for almost four years now. The fact that they withheld $191,000 of Craig Thomson’s employee entitlements back in 2007 says it all. They knew then that fraud or likely fraud had taken place. The fact that Craig Thomson did not take any action to recover the $191,000 is basically admission of guilt that he fraudulently took the money.
When Craig Thomson was elected to Parliament in 2007 his position at the Union was taken by Kathy Jackson. Her former husband, Jeff Jackson, was also accused of ripping off the Union when he was secretary of the Victorian HSU. This is outlined in an article in the Australian in April 2009. Some of the things he is alleged to have used it for is: “a string of prostitutes, designer clothes, dental work, gourmet food and drinks at a favourite Melbourne hotel.” (Read more at: http://bit.ly/pzNjuF)
Kathy Jackson’s partner is now The Hon. Vice President Michael Lawler of Fair Work Australia. The same Fair Work Australia that has been investigating the Craig Thomson affair for the last two years and has achieved nothing.
On August 25th 2011 Kathy Jackson announced that the Union would refer the matter to the NSW Police and give them all the evidence that they had. Why after almost 4 years and a clear cover-up had they refered it to the police.
Simple, a few days earlier the federal shadow attorney general, George Brandis, had made a formal complaint to the NSW Police who said they would evaluate whether or not to investigate. This gave Kathy Jackson and the union a few days at best to make a complaint to the NSW Police otherwise if they did decide to investigate Ms Jackson and the Union could also be charged for concealing a criminal offence. Without a doubt that is the legal advice that Kathy Jackson and the union would have had. But they still have a lot of explaining to do of why it took them four years to make the complaint.
Fair Work Australia
It is a court and has Judges and Commissioners. It says on their website “Fair Work Australia began operation on 1 July 2009 following the enactment of the Fair Work Act 2009 and associated transitional legislation. The new tribunal assumed the functions of the Australian Industrial Relations Commission and the Australian Industrial Registry (both date back to 1904) and the Australian Fair Pay Commission (established in 2005) and some of the functions of the Workplace Authority (established in 2007)”.
The main functions are setting minimum wages, dealing with unfair dismissals, regulating Unions and general workplace protections etc.
Julia Gillard is the person who set it up when she was Deputy Prime Minister and the Minister for The Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations.
What Julia Gillard did was set up Fair Work Australia and then closed down Australian Industrial Relations Commission and the Australian Industrial Registry. Why didn’t she just rebadge the Australian Industrial Relations Commission? I have no doubt is was so she could put as many Labor Party cronies in there as she could. She in effect started her own court.
This is not unheard of. For no logical reason The Howard Government started the Australian Federal Magistrates Court in 2000 which is currently headed up by Chief Federal Magistrate John Pascoe who is mate of John Howard’s and was appointed in 2004 (See my post on John Pascoe titled “The handiwork of Chief Federal Magistrate John Pascoe – witness bribing, price-fixing, succumbing to blackmail to conceal a crime and lying to shareholders etc. Is there anything this man cannot do?“.) The head registrar is Adele Byrne who was appointed in 2000 and was at the time of her appointment an adviser to the then Attorney-General Darryl Williams. So much for the separation of powers.
In my previous post I mentioned that the Australian Mines and Metals Association has documented Julia Gillard stacking the bench at Fair Work Australia with her union mates. One person who gets mentioned as a clear labor party dual appointment is Deputy President Peter Sams of the NSW IRC who was the secretary of the NSW Labor Council (now Unions NSW) from 1994 to 1998. What is not mentioned is that he is also a former ALP State President and a former Managing Director of Radio Station 2KY which at the time was owned by the Labor Party.
The point I am trying to make is that when you have people like Peter Sams and Kathy Jackson’s partner Michael Lawler (and there are plenty more like them) at Fair Work Australia it is not to hard to work out why Fair Work Australia have been doing nothing with the Craig Thomson matter which they have been investigating for the last two years.
Senator Chris Evans and Peter Hanks – QC
In February this year at a budget estimates hearing liberal Senator Michael Ronaldson tried to ask questions to Terry Nassios who is the Fair Work Australia employee who is investigating Craig Thomson, such as whether or not he had interviewed Craig Thomson. Senator Chris Evans intervened and said he would like to get some legal advice before Terry Nassios answered the question.
Peter Hanks QC was subsequently paid $7092 and advised it was not in the public interest to reveal who had been interviewed. The advice is nothing but a bad joke. The matter has been dragging on for almost 4 years and FWA has been investigating for 2 years. It clearly is in the public interest to see what FWA have been doing and why they have been so derelict in their duty.
Peter Hanks QC should never have given the advice in the first place as he has a clear conflict of interest. He has had his snout in the tax payer funded government trough for a long time. For example he is currently representing the Department of Health and Ageing in their Federal Court dispute with British American Tobacco Australia over plain packaging for cigarettes and in 2007 he headed a review of Workers’ Compensation in Victoria for the Labor government.
When you hear the government say they have legal advice that it is not in the public interest to reveal information that is code for a cover up. Peter Hanks QC should reveal on what basis and how he gave the advice. A copy of the written advice would be interesting to see and there is nothing stopping Senator Chris Evans or Fair Work Australia making it public. Given that Fair Work Australia would have plenty of lawyers working there why did they pay for the dodgy advice?
There is a prima facie case to have both Senator Chris Evans and Peter Hanks QC charged with concealing a serious indictable offence.
Senator Mark Arbib
Senator Mark Arbib never seems to be far away when there is dodgy conduct going on. He helped Craig Thomson get prelected in the seat of Dobell, he reportedly helped negotiate the $90,000 to $150,000 bailout for Craig Thomson (which he has not denied) by the NSW Labor Party which Mark Arbib previously headed up. He appointed Tim Lee who is a former labor party adviser and union official as General Manager of Fair Work Australia. (Terry Nassios who is investigating Craig Thomson at FWA reports directly to Tim Lee).
The NSW Police could have and should have started an investigation into Craig Thomson. They claimed they could not start an investigation unless they had a complaint from the Health Services Union. This is a straight out lie by the NSW Police. The Commissioner Andrew Scipione has a few questions he needs to answer on why they were lying. It is worth noting that he was appointed as Police Commissioner by the previous NSW Labor government who were notorious for appointing their own boys and girls to senior positions in the government.
Is Craig Thomson guilty of ripping off the Health Services Union? There is a truck load of evidence that says he HAS, but the two main telling pieces of evidence are:
1. He is fusing to respond to the massive amounts of allegations that have been made against him and is dragging the Federal Government into the gutter. If he was not guilty he would have addressed the allegations long ago.
2. He never took legal action to recover the $191,000 employee entitlements that the Health Services Union kept in 2007. And this is a person who needed the NSW Labor party to bail him out with $90,000 to $150,000 so he did not go bankrupt. If he had not ripped off the union he would have gone after the $191,000.
Prime Minister Julia Gillard
She clearly knows that Craig Thomson has committed a criminal offence and has been trying to cover it up otherwise she would take action and not let the scandal drag the government into the gutter. Her office has been instructing all the labor party federal MP’s on how to answer media questions on the Craig Thomson scandal. All the federal MP’s would be well advised to get their own independent legal advice because some of the answers they are being instructed to give could be considered an attempt to conceal a criminal offence and they themselves could and should be charged.
In summary we have the Health Services Union concealing criminal offences for almost 4 years. Fair Work Australia which was set up by and to the liking of Julia Gillard and is full of Labor Party cronies covering it up for the last two years and it is probably another year or more before they do anything if ever. Senator Evans and Peter Hanks QC committing the criminal offence of trying to conceal a criminal offence and that serial grub Mark Arbib in the background pulling the strings.
The Craig Thomson affair has a lot of similarities to Julia Gillard helping rip of the AWU. Both involved fraud and theft from a union and both involved a cover up.
There has been various legal opinions in the media that Craig Thomson has not committed a crime because he was not instructed by the HSU on how to use the credit card and because he never stole any property and even if he had of stolen property that it would be ok if he returned it.
Well those legal opinions are garbage. His employment contract would tell him what he is entitled to from a financial view-point and unless it says in his employment contract that he can use the company credit for things like prostitutes, electrical goods and his election campaign etc then he has stolen the money. When he bought the electrical goods and shoes etc and paid for them with the HSU credit card they belonged to the HSU and I have not seen in the news where he has returned them so he has stolen property from the HSU. I would also like to know how he could return the services of the escorts he used.
The conduct of the people mentioned above, especially Julia Gillard, reminds me of the famous David Frost/Richard Nixon interview where Frost asked Nixon about the legality of the president’s actions. Nixon replied: “Well, when the president does it, that means that it is not illegal.” Julia Gillard obviously thinks because she is the Prime Minister she can do what she wants, conceal crimes, falsely accuse people of committing crimes etc.
It is time for Australia to have a zero tolerance for corruption especially by politicians.
The whole situation is total joke and that is best put by Nationals Senate Leader Barnaby Joyce in an interview he gave in the above video on Meet the Press on Channel Ten.
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