Royal Commission

Lisa Zanatta – Perjury Queen of the Trade Union Royal Commission

Lisa Zanatta admitted to premeditated perjury in the witness box at the Trade Union Royal Commission in what could be regarded as the Commission’s best day so far. Ms Zanatta said she lied under oath to protect her boss David Atkin who is CEO of the $23 Billion industry super fund Cbus and Brian Parker NSW State Secretary of the CFMEU.

Ms Zanatta’s admission to perjury was a real game changer as far as the Royal Commission is concerned and will not only destroy Zanatta’s career but also likely the careers of the many people who have colluded with her.

It was announced today that the Royal Commission has been extended by 12 Months and Zanatta’s admissions in the witness box on Friday (3/10/14) alone would justify the extension.

Who is Lisa Zanatta?

Her job title is Senior Adviser – Member Relationships at Cbus and she is also a former employee of the CFMEU and current member. She is a former candidate for the Victorian government in 2006 (Click here to read more). She also ran for Labor Party pre-selection with the support of the CFMEU in 2009 against Lynne Kosky who was then Victorian Transport Minister. (Click here to read more)


The Construction, Forestry, Mining and Energy Union CFMEU managed to obtain personal data which included contact details for the customers of Cbus (Construction and Building Unions Superannuation) who worked for the company Lis-Con. The CFMEU wanted the data to use in an industrial battle with Lis-Con. It has been alleged that the CFMEU wanted to contact the employees and make trouble for Lis-Con.

As the facts show Cbus employee Lisa Zanatta who lives in Melbourne had the data printed out and couriered to her house on a Friday. The following Monday she flew to Sydney and hand delivered the data to the CFMEU Lidcombe office at the request of Brian Parker who wanted the data. She flew to Sydney to try and make sure they did not get caught as email is traceable and normal mail might have ended up in the wrong hands.

Lisa Zanatta was questioned about the trip while giving evidence and she said she went to Sydney for a meeting at Cbus’s Sydney office in the City. She gave a false story of how she could not find the office and how her mobile phone was dead and she called the office from a pay phone and the meeting was cancelled and she went back to Melbourne.

What brought Zanatta unstuck was GPS tracking of her taxi and Google Maps. The Royal Commission produced the data for the taxi trip she took as she paid for it by credit card so they could find which taxi she took. From there they asked the taxi company for the data which showed she did not go to the City at all but went to the CFMEU Lidcombe office. Ms Zanatta had no option but to admit committing perjury.

Lisa Zanatta – perjury (Click here for the transcript of Lisa Zanatta’s evidence on the 3rd of October 2014)

When Zanatta’s lawyer knew the game was up he interjected and there was a 5 minute adjournment to the hearing and when it resumed the following took place.

“THE COMMISSIONER: Ms Zanatta, when people are asked questions in a court or in other proceedings, normally they’re entitled to refuse to answer the question if it might incriminate them.  That’s called the privilege against self-incrimination, but it has been abolished for royal commissions….” (Page 749)

Any evidence that you give at a Royal Commission hearing is inadmissible against you in evidence in a later civil or criminal case. The exception being if you perjure yourself at a Royal Commission. The penalty for that is up to 5 years jail or a fine of up to $20,000. (See pages 749 and 750 of the Transcript)

And from page 750: (Q is Jeremy Stoljar, barrister for the RC) (A is Lisa Zanatta)

Q. I said to you that the evidence you gave to this Commission on your oath a few minutes ago about coming into George Street and ringing from a phone booth at York Street was an absolute lie, wasn’t it?

A.   Correct.

Q.   So you gave that evidence knowing it was false?

A.   I did.

Q.   And you did that to conceal the role that Mr Parker had played in causing you to obtain Lis-Con documents; that’s right, isn’t it?

A.   I did that to protect a number of people.

Q.   One of whom was Mr Parker?

A.   Yes.

Q. And who were the other people you were protecting?

A.   Well, Cbus and the CEO.

Q.   Mr Atkin?

A.   Correct.

And on page 761:

Q.   You’re just evading the question now, aren’t you? See, you’ve engaged in a deliberate and prolonged cover-up, haven’t you, Ms Zanatta; that’s right, isn’t it?

A.   I wouldn’t call it a cover-up.  It was about protecting people and it was an inappropriate release of personal details, but again, I say that it wasn’t the type of data that I would normally operate with and use.

And on page 762:

Q. You had deliberately concocted your false story before you came here; that’s right, isn’t it?  You’d gone through the records and you’d worked out a story; that’s right, isn’t it?

A.   Correct, but not in relation to this issue.

Q.   No, but I’m talking about the delivery of documents on 29 July. You have come to this Commission with that plan in mind; correct?

A.   Correct

Q.   To tell a false story; that’s right, isn’t it?

A.   Well, to protect people, yes.

Q.   But you had come to this Commission with the intention, the premeditated intention, of giving false evidence; that’s right, isn’t it?

A.   Yes.

The last two lines of the transcript are the most damaging for Lisa Zanatta because she admitted to premeditated perjury and no one can defend that. Ms Zanatta clearly continued to perjure herself about other issues but her credibility is gone and so is her career.

Possible Criminal Charges

Lisa Zanatta should be charged and found guilty of perjury given her admission at the Royal Commission that she deliberately gave false evidence. There are possible other criminal charges as well given the data she took to Sydney was in effect stolen data. The fact that she flew the data up to Sydney instead of email or mail itself says that she knew what she was doing was corrupt.

Others who would want to be very worried include Cbus CEO David Atkin and NSW CFMEU Secretary Brian Parker. Mr Parker also gave evidence on Friday before Ms Zanatta and denied knowing how the data ended up in Sydney, instead Mr Parker and the CFMEU blamed whistleblower Brian Fitzpatrick. (Click here to read more)

Then there are CFMEU National Secretary Dave Noonan and NSW President Rita Mallia who are also both Directors of Cbus. They both have plenty to answer for as well and have a fiduciary duty as Directors

Inquiry extension

The scope and time of the Royal Commission has been extended for 12 months from a reporting date of December 2014 to December 2015. It will deliver an interim report on December 14 this year.

One interesting part of the new scope being reported is “it would be “desirable” to close a gap in the commission’s terms of reference to ensure actions such as interfering with witnesses could be examined.” (Click here to read more)

I have written about the intimidation of witnesses a number of times including on the 24th of September in the post titled The Bill Shorten Crew stalks and harasses witnesses and journalists at the Trade Union Royal Commission” (Click here to read more) It is worth reading again with the new broader scope of the inquiry.

For some reason Lisa Zanatta and her perjury has not received a great deal of media attention which is maybe because it was on a Friday afternoon before a long weekend. But I suspect it will receive plenty of attention when she is charged with perjury which is almost guaranteed.

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29 replies »

  1. Will this corruption ever cease? Or is it inherent with unions and Labor? We the general public deserve the right to know

    • Corruption is not specific to any party or office or person. It happens where there is no transparency and no due supervision and an opportunity to use the office to a private benefit. I’m sure, you dig under Abbot’s entourage and will find the same. We are all human.

  2. Unions, Labor and Bill Shorten corrupt and rotten to the core. They think they can do what they like and are not answerable to the laws of the land. It’s about time they were brought to heel. I’m sure the extended commission will uncover a rats nest when it investigates the Victorian Desal Plant.

  3. I await the day when this perjurer, and many others, face the courts. However, it will take brave men to bring these to justice. Do we have any at the moment, in either of the two mainstream political parties, to follow through with bringing action against these criminals?

  4. I was personally involved in a case where a complainant perjured herself, as revealed under cross examination, by the testimony of a fellow complainant. The expose resulted in the prosecution withdrawing charges and the magistrate ordering all charges to be expunged from the record.
    I enquired as to what would be done about the false statements made to police and the perjuries of the complainant and was told that it was up to the magistrate. Alternatively, if the magistrate failed to act it would be up to someone to make a complaint to the police.
    The magistrate chose not to act so I made a complaint and the police then acted upon it.
    Would the same apply in this case and if so, who would have to make a complaint to get police to act?

  5. Why do they do it? Obviously political gain is important to these people——-but what the hell when you lose your own dignity. Ms Zanatta is now a lost cause. Any bereavement shown by those she tried to protect is also lost as they seek ways to protect themselves and their entitlements. This flummery is best over with.

  6. Lisa Zanatta got caught up with her lies under oath at the Royal Commission definitely for sure. But she wasn’t the first one to lie under oath at the Royal Commission into the unions. On the day Gillard took the stand, the 2 witnesses before Gillard, former HSU secretary (before Craig Thomson) Rob Elliot & his wife Kay Darvinza deliberately lied about Gillard’s offered help to start a dodgy slush fund by saying it never happened, where that Mr Elliot made a statement to the Royal Commission saying that Gillard had offered her assistance to start up this dodgy slush fund. As I just said, Lisa Zanatta has not been the only one to lie under oath already. There will be others that will lie as well during the rest of this Royal Commission. That is the way the labor party & the unions do things.

  7. My issue is if the self-discrimination purportedly abolished for Royal Commission would stand, this as the Framers of the constitution specifically provided for a person to be dealt with within their state environment by their peers. The Royal Commission clearly undermines this. I do not seek to justify any alleged wrongdoing of Lisa Zenatta but express my concerns that the purported abolition of self-incrimination may not be constitutionally valid. The Royal Commission then can be used to circumvent state legal provisions. I already made a previous submission that the Royal commission may in fact be unconstitutional, but will not go into details further in this post as it is set out in my submission.

  8. I believe Steve Bracks is the Chairman of C-Bus!

    He is apparently on holidays till the end of October, very convenient

    He is a real labor-boy..

  9. Cbus CEO David Atkin and NSW CFMEU Secretary Brian Parker appear to be the big fish, Lisa Zanatta essentially just a loyal minow. It will be interesting to look back in 5 years time and see where they all end up.

    • Hi sally; don’t think we will have to wait 5 years. October 23 I think the robo ceo is due back in the box. My opinion and understanding of his background and that of “SPARKELS” Parker ————————–it’s over rover! Regards.

  10. I wonder if our Lisa will take even a moment to ponder how she has been used, or whether she still continues to believe in the “whatever it takes” meme?

  11. I am flabbergasted at the blatancy of her lying, but she will be proud of her silly little self as she will be treated as a great hero of the union movement.

  12. Cbus media statement – 09 October 2014

    Cbus apologises for wrongful release of member information

    Cbus Super’s Chief Executive Officer, Mr David Atkin today apologised on behalf of the Fund to the members whose information was provided to the NSW Branch of the CFMEU.

    On Friday 3 October, a Cbus employee admitted under oath at the Royal Commission into Trade Union Governance and Corruption to wrongfully supplying personal information, including contact details of Fund members’ who were employees of Lis-Con Services and Concrete Construction, to the CFMEU.

    Having misled Cbus management during an internal and external investigation, and the lawyers acting for Cbus at the Royal Commission, the employee has been suspended.

    Mr Atkin has met with relevant stakeholders to advise of the situation and briefed the Board.

    The Board will be meeting on 28 October, following the finalisation of evidence to the Royal Commission by Cbus employees on the 23 October.

    The Board will actively consider actions already undertaken, and the need for an independent governance review to ensure that the Fund’s policies and operations protect members’ information.

    Mr Atkin said today that the Fund would be writing to the members whose information had been wrongly provided to apologise.

    “The members of our fund are our first priority and it is important that we acknowledge that a Fund employee has wrongly released their personal information and assure them of the remedial undertakings to ensure it doesn’t occur again” Mr Atkin said.

    “While the Fund has an ongoing responsibility to pursue arrears and protect members’ superannuation, this does not in any way excuse the action that has occurred in this case, or the attempt by an employee to hide the truth from Cbus and the Royal Commission,” Mr Atkin said.

    Mr. Atkin said that the Fund was still subject to the processes of the Royal Commission into Trade Union Governance and Corruption, and would continue to cooperate with the Commission.

    “Our 700,000 plus members expect us to act in their best interests in protecting and growing their retirement incomes and that is what we remain focused on.”

    “We will be working to find out all the facts of this incident and to ensure it cannot happen again.” Mr. Atkin said.

    KCA: Why did it take them a week to issue the press release? And why did they not make everyone aware of the press release such as this site? Why haven’t they sacked Zanatta given she openly perjured herself? Why didn’t they suspend CEO David Atkin as well given the evidence? So many questions yet so few answers from Cbus.

    • CBus rightfully deserves the mother of all guerrilla campaigns to be waged against it over the coming months. Aside the from the unliklihood that Zanatta travelled to Sydney, acting without instruction or guidance from her superiors, CBus have refused to sack this employee for what can only be described as a criminal offense by someone in a position who should have known better.

      If Zanatta is relocated to a high paying job anywhere in the union, superfund or ALP sphere after this, it will only confirm the suspicion that the unions and ALP connected organised crime is beyond the reach of our legal system.

  13. So the person who committed perjury has been suspended? How does this not result in instant dismissal with a loss of all entitlements. Zanetta admitted to trying to protect Atkins yet he is still CEO of Cbus. Why has not every member of Cbus not spoken up and/or moved all their super to another fund that has no Union corruption/connection as Cbus has proven that they cannot be trusted with personal information let alone the hard earned dollars of members. They do not have any consideration for the member’s interest but only for themselves and what lines their own pockets and pushes their personal agendas. All under the Labor party (and their money machine Unions) umbrella. Why does this not surprise! The Unions will be working twice as hard, telling twice the lies now to get their beloved Labor Party back into government to cover all tracks and ensure no convictions which Shorten and Co. will willingly oblige.

  14. A Message for Ms. Zanetta. Lisa you will go through the rest of your life with everyone, family, friend, foe and anyone you deal with questioning every word that comes out of your mouth. You are not a Heroine for the Unions (or some within Cbus that you covered for) but a stooge used to cover up for those who benefit the most by your actions, deceptions and cover-up. You have embarrassed your family, close and extended beyond belief and if there is any justice you will be made to pay dearly for your actions. That those close to you will be tarred with the same brush is something that probably does not even concern you but you will be forever know as a corruptible scammer with absolutely NO INTEGRITY. Let us just hope that any future employment reflects your actions to date where you are not trusted with anything more than a broom and others litter in the streets.

    • I reckon her days of any employment are nil. I empathize with your username..”Sickened to the Core.” It reflects what I feel about the unhealthy stench this commission has unearthed.

      • Feel the same about what has come out so far “Twinkycupcake” with much more to come no doubt. So much absolutely indecent, immoral and uncivilised garbage going on in Oz at the moment that is causing a lot more people to feel “Sickened to the Core”. Time for people power to stand up and stop being so scared of being labelled right wing racist/rednecks etc. (yes off topic with this) but the theme is the same….the leftist apologists making excuses for the evil and corrupt amongst us while us average Joes work hard, pay way too much tax all so these kind of people can say/do whatever they like, all fully funded by those of us who abhor the actions. We need representatives in Parliament who will do what is best for the Majority of us Aussies not just minorities who make more noise.

    • Agree with you again. I know of one decent Senator in Canberra at the moment. Unfortunately he is a lone soul not affiliated with any major or minor parties, but boy is he making a dent in the way “business as usual” is done. I wish he was cloned to bring common sense as the norm to that place. His mantra is to tell the truth, as he was brought up the old fashioned way.

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