Updated about an hour ago
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Related Story: Calls for royal commission into institutional abuse of people with disability
Federal Labor is calling for a royal commission into the abuse of people with a disability.
Rights groups back Federal Labor's call to tackle epidemic
A royal commission would "open the doors" to closed-off institutional environments
Shadow disability minister calls for bipartisan support
It comes after a Senate inquiry recommended establishing a royal commission into the disability sector in November 2015.
The co-chief executive of People With Disability Australia, Matthew Bowden, has welcomed Labor's announcement, saying violence against people with a disability was at "epidemic levels".
"It's happening in all environments where people with disability are; it's happening in every single jurisdiction," Mr Bowden said.
He said a royal commission could help uncover the abuse of people in more closed-off environments.
"Some of the people who are at great risk are at great risk because of the environment they're in," he said.
"So people in psychiatric facilities, people with disabilities in juvenile justice centres, in prisons, in group homes.
"They're hard to reach because their environments don't allow them to have freedom of association with people; service providers have a great deal of control and power in those people's lives and so reaching them can be difficult.
"But this is where a royal commission would be able to compel the doors to be flung open and a spotlight to be shone in those very hard-to-reach places."
Women particularly at risk
The chief executive of Women With Disabilities Australia, Carolyn Frohmader, said she dealt with reports of violence every day and the problem appeared to be getting worse.
"The ones that we see on television, on Four Corners, Lateline, media reports, they're just the ones we know about," she said.
Locked away in suburbia
A hundred years ago people with an intellectual disability were locked up in "lunatic asylums". Today they're still locked away, but it's just behind the walls of suburbia, writes Alison Branley.
"That's the tip of the iceberg."
Ms Frohmader said it was crucial that the royal commission focused in particular on the abuse suffered by women with a disability.
"We know anyway the terrible statistics in the Australian context around violence against women generally, but if you add the layer of disability on top of that the evidence the statistics are horrific," she said.
"Women with disability experience domestic violence at a rate of 40 per cent higher than women without disability.
"And we know that women and girls with disability in institutional settings are targeted and experience profound and horrific forms of violence."
She said issues such as forced contraception, abortion and sterilisation would also need to be addressed.
Call for bipartisan support
Both the Federal Government and the Opposition voted against setting up a royal commission when the Greens called for the move earlier this year.
The Greens' motion was in response to allegations of abuse in institutional care raised by the ABC's Four Corners program.
Inquiry hears horror stories
The disability advocacy group Bolshy Divas told the 2015 inquiry accountability was lacking in the system and abuse cases went nowhere.
Shadow disability minister Carol Brown said further cases had come to light since then.
She said the issue could not be ignored.
"We've also had organisations that have been calling for a royal commission, we've also had more than a hundred Australian academics sign a letter to the prime minister arguing the need," Senator Brown said.
"So there's been added voices to the call for a royal commission and the government is not listening."
But she said she remained hopeful there would soon bipartisan support and the Turnbull Government would establish the public inquiry.
Senator Brown said that would allow victims, families and carers to have their voices heard at the "highest possible level".
"A royal commission can compel witnesses, they take evidence and testimony where other forms of inquiries cannot and it's able to make recommendations and findings fully independent of all other levels of government and the non-government sector," she said.
Clinton campaign boss John Podesta paid by Adani-fight foundation
Hillary Clinton’s campaign chairman John Podesta in Washington.
12:00AM November 3, 2016
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Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign chairman was being paid $US7000 a month by the US foundation funding efforts to stop the $16 billion Adani coal project in Queensland at the same time as he was being briefed on the anti-coal campaign in Australia.
The San Francisco-based Sandler Foundation started paying John Podesta after he switched from being Barack Obama’s counsellor to Mrs Clinton’s campaign chairman in February last year, and has been seeking his assistance for anti-coal actions in India and Australia.
Mr Podesta’s payments have been revealed in the latest batch of his emails released by WikiLeaks. He has refused to confirm the payments, but the Sandler Foundation, which also funds the Sunrise Project, the Australian-based leader of the campaign against the Adani coal project, has verified the emails and said it would “pay much more” for Mr Podesta’s advice. Earlier email dumps by WikiLeaks confirmed that Sunrise was leading a foreign-funded, highly orchestrated group of Australian activists working to stop the Adani coalmine, which it is claimed will create 10,000 jobs, by influencing indigenous land owners and environmental legal challenges.
In a celebratory email to the Sandler Foundation in August last year after a decision against the Adani mine, Sunrise director John Hepburn, a former Greenpeace activist and one of the authors of a strategy to block coalmining in Australia, thanks the foundation. “Without your support, none of this would have happened,” he said.
Those emails also revealed that in May last year Mr Podesta was being briefed on attempts by Sandler Foundation-funded groups to protect their tax-exempt charity status and hide the identity of their foreign donors from the Australian parliament.
Mr Podesta also offered to help Greenpeace in India, which was also involved in a fight for charity status as it campaigned against the Indian Adani corporation.
Herb Sandler founded the Sandler Foundation after selling a family owned bank, World Savings, just before the global financial crisis. Mr Sandler, and his late wife Marion, sold the bank for $US25 billion, making a personal profit of almost $US3bn.
Mr Sandler and Mr Podesta are close friends. The Sandler family has given $4.4 million to the Clinton campaign because they “care about people and not billionaires”.
The Turnbull government has accused a “cabal of individuals and overseas activists” of trying to prevent jobs being created in Queensland. Federal Resources Minister Matt Canavan has said that the foreign-funded groups “don’t live here, they don’t understand the region, and they’re trying to corrupt our judicial system and our political system for their own ends”.
Senator Canavan has called for foreign-funded groups to be forced to disclose their income.
The Adani mine development, which it is claimed will help provide cheap electric power to tens of millions of poor Indians, has been delayed for at least seven years by various legal challenges, including against a rail line to the coast and the development of a port at Abbot Point.
Yesterday, GetUp!, one of the groups named in the Podesta emails fighting the Adani mine, said Senator Canavan attacked its “one million members rather than engage positively with the push to get the influence of ‘Big Money’ out of politics”. Paul Oosting, national director of GetUp!, said Senator Canavan was “too busy defending the interests of major Liberal National Party donors, like Adani, to try and reform the current broken situation”.
A 2011 memo made public Wednesday by Wikileaks revealed new details of how former President Bill Clinton made tens of millions of dollars for himself and his wife, then Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, through an opaque, ethically messy amalgam of philanthropic, business and personal activities.
The memo was written by Bill Clinton’s longtime aide, Doug Band, and is among tens of thousands of emails apparently stolen from Hillary Clinton’s campaign chief, John Podesta, in what U.S. officials believe is part of a massive Russian-backed attempt to disrupt the U.S. election.
The Band memo came in response to an investigation undertaken by a law firm, Simpson Thacher & Bartlett, into the activities of the Clinton Foundation at the behest of its board. The board was concerned that some of the activities undertaken by Band and others on behalf of the President could threaten the Foundation’s IRS status as a charity, according to Band’s memo. Chelsea Clinton had also reported concerns to Podesta and other Clinton advisors that Band and his recently-launched consulting firm, Teneo, were using her father’s name without his knowledge to contact British lawmakers for clients, including Dow Chemical.
In the 12-page memo, Band describes how he and several colleagues spent much of the years after Bill Clinton’s presidency working to fund the Clinton Foundation, which has raised nearly $2 billion from individuals, corporations and governments for charities focusing on climate change, economic development, health, women and girls issues and other causes. Band claims in the memo that from 2006 to 2011, he and a colleague, Justin Cooper, raised $46 million for the Foundation through the Clinton Global Initiative, an annual networking conference that is one of the Foundation's big sources of income.
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But the Foundation work was just a part of what Bill Clinton did during his wife’s time as a Senator and Secretary of State, and it wasn’t always clear where the former president's non-profit activities ended and his for-profit ones began. Five months before he wrote the memo, Band joined forces with a recently retired State Department envoy, Declan Kelly, to form Teneo, which Band said provided merchant and investment banking services, corporate restructuring, public relations and communications services and strategic advising services to 20 clients, including Coca-Cola, Dow Chemical, UBS, Barclays and BHP Billiton, among others. Over that period, Band says in the memo, Teneo raised $8 million for the Clinton Foundation.
And Band was also organizing personal income directly for Clinton. Under the heading, “For-Profit Activity of President Clinton (i.e. Bill Clinton, Inc.),” Band wrote, “We have dedicated our selves to helping the President secure and engage in for-profit activities—including speeches, books, and advisory service engagements... In support of the President’s for-profit activity, we also have solicited and obtained, as appropriate, in-kind services for the President and his family—for personal travel, hospitality, vacation and the like. Neither Justin nor I are separately compensated for these activities (e.g., we do not receive a fee for, or percentage of, the more than $50 million in for-profit activity we have personally helped to secure for President Clinton to date or the $66 million in future contracts, should he choose to continue with those engagements).”
Band mentions four such “arrangements” without naming them. Bill Clinton was paid nearly $18 million to be “honorary chancellor” of a for-profit college, Laureate International Universities, according to reports and the family's tax returns. A Dubai-based firm, GEMS Education, paid Bill Clinton more than $560,000 in 2015, according to the tax returns. Band also lists a variety of speaking fees, previously disclosed by the Clintons, including hundreds of thousands of dollars each from UBS, Ericsson, BHP and Barclays. In 2011 alone, according to the Clinton’s tax returns, Bill Clinton earned $13,454,000 in speaking fees.
No evidence has been found to support allegations of a quid pro quo of official acts by Hillary Clinton as senator or Secretary of State in exchange for the money received by the Clintons or the Clinton Foundation. However the messiness and opacity of the relationship between Clinton’s personal, business and philanthropic undertakings detailed in the memo raises new questions about Bill Clinton's activity. In the email to which Band's draft memo was attached, Band tells Podesta he has removed the "lasry section all together." Marc Lasry is a hedge fund manager and Clinton donor who funded an unsuccessful investment vehicle launched by Chelsea Clinton's husband Marc Mezvinsky.
Other questions arise in the penultimate paragraph of the memo, entitled “Other Matters.” Without providing details, Band writes that since the end of Bill Clinton’s presidency he and Cooper had served as the primary contact and point of management for President Clinton's activities, including political, business and Foundation matters, speeches, books, and family/personal needs, including “securing in-kind private airplane travel, in-kind vacation stays, and supporting family business and personal needs.”
Calls and emails to Band, Teneo and the Clinton Foundation were not immediately returned. The Hillary Clinton campaign declined to confirm that the memo, or other emails released by Wikileaks, are in fact undoctored documents stolen from Podesta’s personal email account. However a campaign spokesperson, Glen Caplin, tweeted on Wednesday that Wikileaks was advancing a “clear political agenda” by “dribbling out” Podesta’s emails. “If Podesta dump was about high-minded transparency @wikileaks would release all at once,” Carlin tweeted.
Podesta has said he is cooperating with the FBI in an investigation of the hack. The Clinton Foundation has said it will stop accepting foreign and corporate donations if Hillary Clinton is elected president.
Writes Michael Smith News: These emails from the ABC tell the story of its refusal to report on Gillard and the AWU Scandal
Wednesday, 05 April 2017
Last Friday I wrote about 4 Corners and its Pauline Hanson expose - here's a recap:
4Corners is a very expensive national asset. It's not the plaything of the ABC's staff collective.
The promo (for the Pauline Hanson expose) could equally have been written featuring Bob Kernohan and others in 2012 regarding Gillard and her secretive deals with the AWU.
I know that 4Corners people set to work on a story regarding Gillard and the AWU Scandal in late 2012.
I know people like Bob Kernohan were spoken to.
In the end, the story of the prime minister who was under police investigation for fraud was canned.
And as the ABC decided to drop the story on Gillard, Gillard gave them an extra $190M of our money.
On Monday 19 November 2012 Jonathon Holmes in his Media Watch program nailed the issues - and confirmed discussions I'd had with him and the 4 Corners program.
EPISODE 41, 19 NOVEMBER 2012
News values, priorities and politics
Has the ABC gone missing in action on a story that might bring down the Prime Minister? Or is it treating the story on its merits?
.........the story is not going away. And my bet is that the ABC’s investigative programs can’t, and won’t, ignore it for much longer.
I don't know how many people contacted the ABC calling for 4 Corners to devote a program to Pauline Hanson.
I doubt it was as many as wrote asking for it to devote time and resources to The AWU Scandal.
In October 2012 one of our readers complained about the lack of coverage.
On 23 October 2012 the ABC's Canberra based news editor made this incredible reply - read it in the context of the time, resources and promotion given to the Hanson piece.
Sent: Tuesday, 23 October 2012 2:08 PM
Subject: ABC News query
Thank you for your email regarding Mr Blewitt's statements. The ABC is aware of these statements but we do not at this stage believe it warrants the attention of our news coverage.
To the extent that it may touch tangentially on a former role of the Prime Minister, we know The Australian newspaper maintains an abiding interest in events 17 years ago at the law firm Slater and Gordon, but the ABC is unaware of any allegation in the public domain which goes to the Prime Minister's integrity. If indeed Ms Gillard has had questions to answer, ABC News reported those answers from her lengthy media conference of 24/8/12 in which she exhausted all questions on the issue.
However, if any allegation is ever raised which might go to the Prime Minister's integrity, the ABC would of course make inquiries into it and seek to report it. As for matters concerning Mr Bruce Wilson, ABC News will cover the case against him as it proceeds.
Once again thank you for your query.
ACT News Editor, ABC News
After we published that missive our readers hit their keyboards and biros in droves.
But beyond putting Bruce Wilson up (to say Gillard knew nothing) followed by Blewitt and Styant Browne on the 730 program, the ABC delivered very little coverage.
When Victoria Police detectives flew to Queensland to interview Olive Brosnahan - the ABC reported nothing.
When the Operation Tendement task force was set up - the ABC reported nothing.
When the Fraud Squad raided Gillard's office on 15 May 2013 - the ABC reported nothing.
On 17 June 2013 The Australia reported on the warrant - and the Victoria Police statement that issues of client legal professional privilege over some documents "should be cleared up within two weeks".
The ABC reported nothing. Again our readers hit the emails and letters.
On 19 June 2013 one of our readers received an emailed response from the ABC. Keep in mind Gillard was then PM and the police were preparing to argue that all the documents created by her and seized in the raid were created in the furtherance of fraud (which was the finding of the Chief Magistrate when he adjudicated on the matter).
Sent: Wednesday, June 19, 2013 10:01 AM
Subject: RE: Victoria Police Raid on Slater and Gordon
Thank you for your email.
The ABC was aware that an alleged raid had occurred. However, we were unable to confirm
it had happened and therefore, we did not report it.
ABC News Online
Later in June, the Gillard Government made this announcement of $190M in extra funding for the ABC:
The ABC is primarily financed by the federal government through triennial funding arrangements. In the 2013-14 Budget, the government is providing the ABC with an additional $30 million over three years to meet the growing demand for its digital services. The ABC will also receive $69.4 million over four years from 2012-13 to expand its news and current affairs services. In addition, the government will provide a loan of $90 million over three years to the ABC to assist with the construction of a purpose-built ABC facility at Southbank, Melbourne.
In 2013-14, government funding to the ABC will total $1.05 billion.
July, August, September - nothing.
Nothing as the privilege case worked its way through the courts.
By September we were facing the Abbott election. And still nothing from the ABC.
One of our readers wrote to the ABC and passed the note on to me:
Date : 2-4/09/2013
Contact type: Complaint
Subject: Police Investigation into three people including J Gillard.
Comments: I would like to know why the ABC has not reported the following information:
1. Police removed boxes of evidence from Slater and Gordon in May, as a result of a search warrant that names Julia Gillard as a person of interest.
2. Police have confirmed in writing that Julia Gillard is under investigation for her role in a Fraud. Copies of this document are publicly available!
3.Police will be in Court on October 16 and will be asserting that Julia Gillard created documents that were created in furtherance of a fraud and will be seeking to use those documents to pursue the conviction of people, including possibly Julia Gillard herself.
In summary; what the hell is wrong with you people? Why is it that you are deliberately avoiding reporting this issue, a matter of significant public interest? Why did you quickly end the coverage on live TV this week when Rudd was asked by a reporter about the matter? When is your recalcitrance on this issue going to end and when can we expect some factual reportage in exchange for our dollar ?
Finally, can you PLEASE assure me that you will have a reporter in Court on October 16 to provide the community with factual reporting on the matter? As the best resourced news organisation in the Southern Hemisphere I think this is the least you can do!
Network - Other
RecipientName - Audience & Consumer Affairs Referer - Complaint
The ABC's news and current affairs (which houses 4Corners) honcho replied.
Sent: Monday, 16 September 2013 2:12 PM
Subject: Police Investigation into three people including J Gillard.
Thank you for your email regarding investigations being conducted by Victoria Police.
It is a matter of public record that some form of investigation is underway. We know this because the ABC extensively reported the fact that Ralph Blewitt and others took information to the Police.
Beyond this, there are few confirmed facts which would reach the threshold of ABC editorial standards for reporting. We accept that other media may operate to a different standard, but we do not intend to compromise our own.
Reporting that the (then) Prime Minister of the nation is under police investigation is an enormously significant call to make. It cannot be made on supposition, on rumour, or on hearsay.
You have said that Vic Pol have confirmed this in writing, but we have not cited this media release or public communication. According to The Australian they’ve been collecting files but you would expect any Police investigation to gather up this sort of primary documentation. That does not mean Ms Gillard is under investigation.
For all we know, the investigation could be into Ralph Blewitt, or Bruce Wilson or Slater and Gordon or any number of other individuals and entities.
Rather than mimicking other media reports, the ABC is following fine principles of reporting confirmed fact.
When such facts become available, you can be sure the ABC will report them.
There was a bit more email toing and froing with Mr Doyle and our reader - and he explained the threshold for the ABC to report on the police raid and investigation.
Sent: Monday, 16 September 2013 3:10 PM
Subject: RE: Police Investigation into three people including J Gillard.
I can’t say for sure whether a reporter with a mic will be filing live reports on the steps of a court, but if and when Victoria Police announce that they are investigating Ms Gillard, you can be sure the ABC will report them.
ABC 4Corners found no difficulty in resourcing and speedily presenting a program on Pauline Hanson based on disgruntled former members statements, apparently unlawfully recorded phone calls and the flagrant presentation by the ABC of legally privileged confidential communications in emails between Ms Hanson and her lawyers.
Four-time Walkley Award winning political commentator and Churchill Fellow, has returned to the fray over concern that the integrity of news dissemination is continually being threatened by a partisan media.
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Mon 20 Mar 2017 12:12:03 pm/415 COMMENTS
Labor’s vilification of RC Commissioner Dyson Heydon, when hearing evidence from Shorten and ex PM Gillard, turned out to be yet another of Shorten’s misguided missiles because Heydon let the criminality of both slide through to the keeper. Now those flawed decisions may come back to haunt him via an unpretentious bloke called Ralph Blewitt.
Justice Heydon excoriated Shorten and determined that Gillard was an innocent tool of partner and union crook, Bruce Wilson.That was not true of Gillard and Shorten deserved to be charged over the monetary betrayal of his AWU members.
Perhaps the Bench believes Labor leaders should be exempt from prosecution as it is they who screamed the loudest about Conservative interference. Labor demanded that dyson Heydon be sacked as a Conservative sympathiser. So the Commissioner (and others) will be watching Ralph Blewitt’s testimony with great interest.
Blewitt has been told by WA Police that he will face over 30 criminal charges. Each of those charges will embroil Julia Gillard and she will find it hard to avoid the witness box in a normal trial. What that evidence leads to should concern Gillard more than Blewitt who has declared his intention to bring down both Gillard and her then boyfriend Bruce Wilson
Despite having been assured of only partial immunity, Blewitt maintains he did not profit from any criminal venture of Gillard and Wilson.
Bill Shorten had insisted the AWU forgo any attempt to recover stolen funds, which by now had amounted to, in total and as best we can determine, $1.4 million in 90s money, could be much more.
Dyson Heydon made a serious mistake in not recommending charges be brought against Gillard and it is likely to leave egg on both his face and reputation when the truth is laid bare, as Blewitt is determined to do, no matter what the cost.
The Commissioner cannot claim ignorance as The Australian newspaper had spelt out the facts behind Gillard’s actions while working as a solicitor for Slater & Gordon.
Slater & Gordon, who are now teetering on the edge of insolvency, were deeply enough involved to sack Gillard in an attempt to appear clean handed.
Anyway, Blewitt was owed a legitimate amount of $13,430 in AWU long-service leave but he was now ‘persona non grata’ with the AWU.
A peeved Ralph needed his money, he was broke. So when he discovered his ol’ mate, and partner in crime Julia had knifed her way into a plum PM’s job, and therefore was now a "person of influence", he decided to give her a call. Remember, ol’ Ralph can be a bit naive too.
“Can you arrange for me to get my severance pay, Julia?” asked Ralph politely. Gillard told him in no uncertain terms to "fornicate" off.
Undeterred, Ralph called Gillard again. This time he couldn’t get past her minders. So he waited and called again, he was transferred to a staffer, “Piss off Blewitt or we will get the Commonwealth Police on to you.” Ralph pissed off and the AWU still owes him his severance pay. And the hurt still abides.
Perhaps it wasn’t wise to piss ol’ Ralph off because when I enquired as to his whistle-blowing motives, he sent me this:
“So we must fly a rebel flag,
As others did before us,
And we must sing a rebel song
And join in rebel chorus.
We'll make the tyrants feel the sting
O' those that they would throttle;
They needn't say the fault is ours
If blood should stain the wattle!"
The is no doubt that Gillard was complicit in, and profited from, at least $1.4 million stolen from the AWU, Slater & Gordon’s client. Her most damning action was that she posed as a solicitor for Slater & Gordon’s client, her boyfriend Bruce Wilson of the AWU.
The WA Police are only moving against Blewitt on a figure of $400,000... there’s a million missing somewhere.
If you have any doubts about Gillard’s guilt, have a read of the 10 part comprehensive series here on pickeringpost.com home page.
Justice Heydon was swayed by Gillard’s “young and naive” defence. Yet Gillard was neither young nor naive, she was a partner in a Labor Party law firm and was fully cognisant of how Labor union criminality works.
Slater & Gordon in fact held part of the mortgage on the now infamous property (above) at 85 Kerr Street Fitzroy, in Melbourne.
Bill Leak's interpretation
The Kerr Street property and others were renovated, including Gillard’s own house in Collingwood, using fraudulent funds paid to Wilson that were extracted from development companies in return for industrial peace.
Gillard knew exactly how it all worked as Shorten is an expert at converting AWU union dues into available cash.
Gillard was at least partly responsible for convincing Boulder AWU members, in her capacity as an AWU lawyer, to transfer their funeral fund to PO box number 157 in Perth, owned by Bruce Wilson. This money was spent on purchasing two holiday homes that had mysteriously been sold after renovations were completed. The profits promptly disappeared.
Ralph Blewitt (left) claims he was dudded by Gillard, (right).
Wilson has vowed to protect Gillard but she is most culpable when it comes to the Corporate Affairs hearing where she had to justify her setting up of the slush fund after Corporate Affairs had initially denied her request. Gillard's subsequent appeal could only be heard in a court of law that Wilson says he clearly recalls. That puts both he and Gillard in an appeals court that transcripts can be subpoenaed from.
Julia had better have plenty of popcorn ready, it will be a long trial that should end with Blewitt on a bond and her and her ex in cuffs.
Turnbull wants unionists & bosses in secret payments in jail - the perfect test case is now before court
Monday, 20 March 2017
Secret commission payments are currently unlawful and were unlawful at the time of Gillard's AWU Workplace Reform Association.
We do not need a new law to prosecute Gillard et al.
To protect Gillard, police have allowed Thiess to pretend it knew nothing about the secret payments made by Thiess to Bill Ludwig, Bruce Wilson, Ralph Blewitt and Julia Gillard (the Heydon Royal Commission found that money to pay for her renovations came in cash from Bruce Wilson who had no other legitimate source than the unlawful slush fund she set up) - incredibly police have accepted Thiess's story that it was deceived by false invoices.
We don't need new laws Mr Turnbull.
We need competent investigations and prosecutions.
And the will to allow justice to take its course, no matter where and to whom that path leads.
PM pitches new union fight with Shorten
Screen Shot 2017-03-20 at 10.48.21 am
Jennifer Rajca, Australian Associated Press
March 20, 2017 8:07am
Malcolm Turnbull has opened up a fresh front on the industrial relations battleground, proposing news laws to jail union officials and employers who make illegitimate secret payments.
As Labor leader Bill Shorten stood up in parliament to introduce a private bill to protect the take-home pay of workers, the prime minister strode into a press conference alongside his Employment Minister Michaelia Cash.
The pair unveiled plans to penalise employers and union officials found to have made secret payments other than for clearly legitimate purposes.
It would also require full disclosure of legitimate payments.
"Trade unions have a solemn, legal, moral, fiduciary duty to act in the best interests of their members," Mr Turnbull told reporters in Canberra on Monday.
"We have seen through the Heydon royal commission and subsequently unions have let their members down and big unions have traded their rights away in return for payments."
For payments with the intent to corrupt, penalties include up to 10 years in prison and $900,000 for individuals.
Sentences of up to two years and $90,000 would apply for other illegitimate payments.
Senator Cash said there was no consistency across Australia's bribery laws and the offence was often difficult to prove.
"Employees should be aware and should have full knowledge of any payments that are made between their employer and a union," she said.
"When you look at the level of penalty, it should send a very, very clear message to any employer or any union who wants to indulge in secretive payments.
"It is wrong and compromises the integrity and lawfulness of the workplace."
The pair described their announcement as a test for Mr Shorten.
But the opposition leader was already pre-empting the attack as he addressed parliament about his bill aiming to stop future cuts to penalty rates following the Fair Work Commission's decision to align Sunday rates in the hospitality and retail sectors.
"What I say to the prime minister is use whatever distraction that you think is necessary. Use every possible dishonest distraction you have in your book. Put up whatever story you want," he said.
"But on this issue, when it comes to defending working families in this country, the living standards of working families, we will not be deterred or put off."
Mr Turnbull will introduce the payments legislation on Wednesday.
CRIMINALISING SECRET PAYMENTS BETWEEN EMPLOYERS AND UNIONS
20 March 2017
Minister for Employment
This week the Turnbull Government will introduce vital legislation banning secret payments between unions and employers.
The new laws will criminalise payments or other benefits passed between employers and unions that could have a corrupting influence.
Any union leader who is willing to accept benefits from an employer is placing themselves in a highly compromising position.
The Royal Commission into Trade Union Governance and Corruption found that such payments corrupt union officials and should be banned.
Penalties will apply equally to employers and unions. The person offering or making the benefit will be subject to the same penalties as the person soliciting or receiving it.
Those who make, receive, solicit or offer payments or benefits intended to corrupt a union official will face a maximum 10 years in prison, up to a $900,000 fine for an individual or $4.5 million fine for a company.
Penalties for payments or benefits other than specified legitimate payments (such as genuine membership fees) will be 2 years in prison, up to a $90,000 for an individual or $450,000 for a company.
The Bill will also require that any legitimate financial benefits obtained by an employer or union during enterprise agreement negotiations be disclosed to employees.
If money changes hands between an employer and a union, both parties have an obligation to honestly disclose these payments to their employees and members.
These vital changes will deliver on three key recommendations of the Royal Commission into Trade Union Governance and Corruption.
The Turnbull Government is acting to ensure that employers and unions act in the best interests of their employees and members.
Bill Shorten and the Labor Party should now support this reform, to clean up the unfair, secretive, and often corrupt payments that have tainted Australian workplaces for decades.
PRESS CONFERENCE WITH THE MINISTER FOR EMPLOYMENT, SENATOR THE HON. MICHAELIA CASH CANBERRA
20 March 2017
Minister for Employment
Corrupting Benefits Bill; 18C; GST distribution; Perth Freight Link
All of our industrial legislation, that the Minister has negotiated through the Senate is designed to ensure that unions do their job, represent their members honestly and openly.
Now, during the Heydon Royal Commission, Australians were horrified to see the extent of secret payments made by employers - big business, very often - to trade unions, and in particular, the Australian Workers Union.
And very often, in circumstances where, in an industrial agreement, the union had agreed to trade away workers' entitlements, including penalty rates - the Cleanevent agreement, the Chiquita Mushrooms agreement and others.
Australians were horrified because they said, how can this be lawful? How could it possibly happen that this would not be a breach of the law?
Now, we are dealing with that right now. We are taking up the recommendations of the Heydon Royal Commission, to make it a criminal offence, punishable by up to 10 years in prison, for a union to accept or a union official to accept or an employer to make a payment that has a corrupting motive, a corrupting intent in the sense of encouraging a union or a union official to act improperly.
We are also making it an offence, punishable by up to two years’ imprisonment, for any payment to be made by an employer to a union or a union official, other than for clearly legitimate purposes - such as the remittance of union dues or something of that kind.
Finally, again implementing the recommendation of the Heydon Royal Commission - we are going to ensure that the law compels unions and employers, at the time an enterprise agreement is put to members of a union for their approval, that any payments to the union is fully disclosed, any legitimate payment is fully disclosed. Secrets payments are utterly unacceptable.
Trade unions have a solemn, legal, moral, fiduciary duty to act in the interests of their members.
And we have seen again and again, through the Heydon Royal Commission and subsequently the way unions have let their members down, how big labour, big unions have ignored the interests of their members and traded their rights away in return for payments from employers.
Now, the law applies to all Australians and it applies to unions.
We have seen Sally McManus from the ACTU say that the law should not apply to unions unless they agree with it.
Well, that’s not the rule of law. That’s the rule of unions.
Bill Shorten has said he wants to run the country like a union leader. That’s not the approach of a Prime Minister. That is not the approach of the leader of a nation whose foundation is freedom, democracy and the rule of law. That is the approach of a union boss, like Sally McManus, that thinks their unions are above the law.
Well, they’re not and in one piece of legislation after another, we are restoring the rule of law to the Australian industrial sector, to the construction sector, to unions, to employer organisations and employers - we are restoring and defending the rule of law.
MINISTER FOR EMPLOYMENT:
Thank you, Prime Minister.
This is all about transparency in the workplace.
Employees should be aware and should have full knowledge of any payments that are made between their employer and a union.
This is a government that is committed to ensuring our workplaces in Australia are transparent and they are at all times treated in a fair manner.
This is a real test for Bill Shorten because Bill Shorten says he believes in the worker and yet, time and time again, by his actions, he confirms for the Australian people, he is only interested in big unions being able to do deals with big businesses.
In terms of this legislation, as we know, the Royal Commission, in fact, successive royal commissions dating back to 1982 have stated that secret payments between employers and unions, should be banned.
We should have transparency in our workplaces.
Of course, we know potentially one of the worst offenders when it comes to secret payments being made, is Bill Shorten himself when he was with the Australian Workers Union.
He was more than happy to have money paid by Cleanevent to his union in exchange for trading away the penalty rates of the lowest-paid workers in this country. But also, in exchange for receiving a list of workers that he could conveniently add to the AWU membership to bolster his power within the union movement.
Well, enough is enough.
Successive royal commissions, including the Heydon Royal Commission have said this is not acceptable practice within the workplace.
So the Prime Minister and I are here to announce today that we will introducing into the Parliament laws to ban corrupting benefits.
This should actually be a piece of relatively uncontroversial legislation. And the test for Bill Shorten and Labor is, they like to talk big on supporting the workers. Well, if that’s what you are all about, then quite frankly, this legislation should be able to go through the Parliament in an uncontroversial manner.
What the legislation seeks to do, is to ban secret payments from employers to unions.
Certain legitimate payments will continue to be allowed, such as payments for genuine services that are provided by a union or genuine payment of membership fees.
Criminal penalties will apply to both the employer and the union. The party that makes the offer of the payment will be penalised in the same way as the party that solicits or receives the payment.
As Commissioner Heydon basically acknowledged - it takes two to tango in these situations.
In terms of the penalties, they reflect the seriousness of the offence.
In terms of criminal penalties for payments with the intent to corrupt, they will be up to 10 years in prison and $900,000 for an individual, or $4.5 million for a company.
Penalties for other illegitimate payments, will be two years in prison or $90,000 for an individual or $450,000 for a companies.
As the Prime Minister has also stated though, transparency is key. So when legitimate payments are being made in the course of negotiating an enterprise agreement, the legislation will require the disclosure of these legitimate payments, to the employees so that when they are considering whether or not to vote the agreement up, they will be doing so in full knowledge of all of the payments or benefits that have been given to either the union or the employer.
If money changes hands between an employer and a union, both parties have an obligation to honestly declare what has occurred and why.
As I have said, this is basically all about transparency. If you do believe in integrity within workplaces, if you do believe for standing up for Australian workers, then we should be standing side-by-side here today with all parties supporting this vital piece of legislation, which will ensure that employers and unions that exchange money, are no longer allowed or in the event they are a legitimate payment, this is disclosed to the employees.
Who will determine what is a genuine service and when will the legislation be introduced?
MINISTER FOR EMPLOYMENT:
That will be for the trier of fact to ultimately determine whether or not it is a genuine service. For example, if a payment is being made into a safety training fund, you would need to show that you actually have an actual program of, basically, safety training. You would need to show that that has been undertaken. But you would also need to show that it has been charged out at market rate.
In terms of the legislation, the Prime Minister will introduce the legislation into the House of Representatives on Wednesday.
Isn’t a payment that has a corrupting intent already illegal under existing laws? Isn't what you are announcing just an IR dog whistle?
MINISTER FOR EMPLOYMENT:
No not at all, Andrew. One of the issues that the Royal Commissions, in particular the Heydon Royal Commission made note of, was that across Australia there are differing laws in relation to bribery. There is no consistency and it is often very difficult to prove.
So in particular, in relation to the industrial relation relations regime, Commissioner Heydon recommended that a Commonwealth offence be introduced and a very clear offence which outlawed basically all payments full stop, unless they are legitimate.
And that is exactly what we have done, so you have consistency across the board in the industrial regime.
[Inaudible] is quite different from already being illegal?
MINISTER FOR EMPLOYMENT:
But, basically, across the board different jurisdictions have different penalties. They are often not utilised and as I have said, a lot of it is actually in relation to the corruption of a Commonwealth official.
This is specifically now, in relation to the industrial context and that is what was lacking and Heydon identified that.
This was recommended by the Royal Commission, presided over by one of the most distinguished judicial figures in contemporary legal history. So this was a very thoughtfully considered recommendation which we have adopted.
Had these laws been in place in the past, some reasonably serious CEOs would have found themselves at risk of going to the slammer as well as unionists. Have you got the support of the construction companies, businesses for this?
MINISTER FOR EMPLOYMENT:
Yes, we have. When Heydon was first announced, companies came out and said they supported the recommendations.
One of the things we’ve got to be very clear here - this applies equally to employers as it does to unions.
When you look at the level of penalty, it should send a very, very clear message to any employer or any union, who wants to indulge in secretive payments. It is wrong and compromises the integrity and lawfulness of the workplace.
If the laws are so important, why has it taken 14 months since the handing down of the final report from the Royal Commission to unveil them? Secondly, in your personal view, should “offend and insult” be removed from Section 18C and replaced by “harass”?
Well thank you. In terms of the timing of this, this is a very important priority. As you know, we’ve dealt with some very substantial pieces of industrial legislation already since the 45th Parliament convened, particularly relating to the Building and Construction Commission, Registered Organisations Bill, obviously, the legislation that affected the Country Fire Authority.
But both the ABCC and Registered Organisations have the same intent of restoring the rule of law, accountability. Registered Organisations in particular required union officials and indeed officers of employer organisations to have the same level of accountability as company directors do to their shareholders.
Again, this is the same principle. But this is a very real, significant gap in the law that Justice Heydon identified in the Royal Commission. It should be utterly unthinkable, unacceptable, that employers would be making payments to unions and in particular, secret payments and in circumstances where - as the Commission found in case after case - the context or the result was that employees' rights were traded away.
Prime Minister on Section 18C?
All of those matters are being considered. As you know, there was a Parliamentary Committee that considered it and the Government is considering its response to that.
If Australians were horrified by the findings of Commissioner Heydon, why did you make scant or almost no mention of them during the election campaign?
Well that’s not correct. That is absolutely not correct. The whole election campaign, the election was triggered by those two pieces of industrial legislation which were fundamental to the recommendations of the Heydon Royal Commission.
If payments are disclosed transparently, why go the extra step and ban them? How can you say that corporate payments to unions corrupt industrial bargaining outcomes, but corporate donations to political parties don’t corrupt public policy outcomes?
Well, you’re not seriously suggesting to me that a corrupting benefit should be allowed, as long as it’s disclosed? Is that what you are putting to us?
Why aren’t political donations a corrupting benefit to politicians? Why do you assume they don't impact public policy outcomes?
I wouldn't have thought there would be anybody here actually defending employers paying bribes to unions, but there it is. It is a broad church.
Prime Minister, what chance do you believe you’ll have of getting this through Parliament? Are you expecting the Labor Party to come on board with this?
Well they should. Look, the Labor Party is not going to take advice from me on industrial matters, I know.
When union membership is declining, we know that. Having said that, the power of a relatively small number of very cashed-up militant unions - CFMEU most prominently - is getting greater and greater within the union movement. You can see the culture of the CFMEU, the lawless culture of the CFMEU, is overtaking the Labor movement.
Bill Shorten is not a Labor leader in the mold of Paul Keating and Bob Hawke. He is a wholly-owned subsidiary of the CFMEU.
You see Sally McManus there, defending the lawlessness of the CFMEU. The head of the ACTU saying unions don't have to obey the law. If they don't like the law, they can disobey it. That is exactly what the CFMEU says.
So that’s the type of Australia that Bill Shorten wants us to be. He wants an Australia where there are two classes of Australians; those who obey the law – that’s most of us - and those who don't have to, unless it suits them, and that’s the CFMEU and the AWU and some of these unions.
Now if the union movement is fair dinkum about restoring its credibility and its integrity and recovering its membership, then it would have backed this in. Just like as it would have backed in the ABCC and the Registered Organisations Bill. But the reality is, we know that Bill Shorten - as I said - he is completely controlled by some militant unions who have utter contempt for the law of the land.
What we are doing is ensuring that the law of the land does apply to them, that the law is strengthened. We are doing so in order to protect the very members of those unions who have so little regard for the laws of our nation.
Prime Minister, on the GST distribution, a poll in The Western Australian on Saturday showed five federal Liberals would lose their seat and a big reason for that is the anger over the GST injustice that WA gets over the distribution. 92 per cent of West Australians say that it’s important that you act on that before the next election.
Can you give a commitment that you will take on board those concerns, rather than waiting for several years? Four years, which Treasury’s estimated before WA’s share recovers to 70 cents. Will you act sooner on that?
Well, we explained during the last year - and I have been very consistent about this - that we understand the sense of grievance that West Australians feel. Michaelia of course, is a West Australian Senator.
MINISTER FOR EMPLOYMENT:
West Australian Senator.
We understand that very well. I am the first Prime Minister to take action on this.
What I said was, in consultation with Colin Barnett and my colleagues, I said, we will have an opportunity in several years’ time - and the estimate at that point was 2019-20 - when the Western Australian GST share, under the formula, rises back up to 70 per cent. That was the West Australian Treasury’s estimation, not mine. I said, that is an opportunity then, to set a floor so that nobody loses. But then, West Australians will feel, as indeed will citizens in other states, that no state's share is going to sink down to the levels of 30 per cent and so forth, where Western Australia that found it.
This is what I did. I made that commitment to seek to achieve that. I wrote to all the Premiers and Chief Ministers, I raised it at COAG. I was attacked, unrelentingly, by the Labor Party, including by Mr Shorten.
So, really, the question now is we will seek to achieve that. That is our goal, we think it is fair and it is achievable with goodwill.
But the fiercest opponents of what I proposed, were Bill Shorten - federal Labor leader - and the Labor Premiers, including South Australia, Victoria and Queensland. So the challenge for the new Labor Premier of Western Australia, is how is he going to get his own party onside? That’s the real question. Because Labor is absolutely rock solid at the federal level, so far anyway, in defending the existing arrangements on the GST distribution.
I believe there is an opportunity to set a floor. But to do so at a time when nobody is actually going to lose. That’s the point. I have been completely consistent about that.
I know there has been some reporting in Western Australia that I had made a commitment that was different to that, but if you look at my statement in August, to the West Australian division of the Liberal Party State Council, and subsequent statements, they have been completely consistent, including the correspondence I had with the Premiers.
I saw somewhere it said I hadn't raised the matter with the Premiers, I did. I raised with them both in writing and in a meeting. Now, we might just have one more?
Section 18C of the Racial Discrimination Act, are you expecting the Government's position on that issue to be resolved this week? Why won't you say what your own personal view is?
Well I am the Prime Minister. So the Government has a view on matters of this kind, the Government will have a response. It will be the collective response of the Government. Perhaps one more?
On penalty rates, do you plan to respond on penalty rates to the Fair Work decision this week, will you be recommending take-home pay orders?
MINISTER FOR EMPLOYMENT:
Yes, we will be making a submission in relation to chapter 11 and the transitional provisions. In terms of what we’ll be recommending, I won't be disclosing it here obviously. That it is something the Government is considering.
Mr Turnbull are you going to carry through your threat during Western Australia election to fund only the Coalition's planned roads project and not fund the new Labor government's rail project?
Michelle, the Freight Link project - which is what you are referring to - is a high-priority project of Infrastructure Australia and we have committed to fund that.
The new Western Australia Labor Government does not want to proceed with it and so therefore doesn't want our money for that project. They would like to secure Federal Government support for alternative infrastructure projects. The position is that we will look at them and Infrastructure Australia will look at them. We’ll examine them in good faith and in the normal way.
Again, it would be quite absurd to do anything else. You can't just say you have got a project that is fully developed, fully costed, fully analysed, prioritised by Infrastructure Australia and then when the Government comes in and says despite all that, we don't want to do it, here, commit the same amount of money to another project, that is at this stage basically a press release.
There is no business case. There is no plan for it. They have got a way to go. We are all in favour of investing in infrastructure and we do so to the tune of tens of billions of dollars around the nation. I am an enthusiast for urban rail, I think we’ll need more urban rail in all of our big cities. I welcome governments that want to get on with that.
But as to manner and the extent of Federal Government funding, that is going to be on the basis, after due consideration, of what is proposed. This idea that the State Government can put out a press release and then say give us the money, on the basis of the press release.
Australians would not think well of my government if we were as careless as that in dealing with their taxpayers' dollars.
Attempts by Julie Bishop, Australia’s foreign minister, to besmirch the reputation of Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak, has hit another obstacle with the arrest of Australia’s Crown Casino executives in China last October.
James Packer a ‘good friend’ of Julie Bishop a private guest of the Packers on a number of occasions is said by sources close to the Chinese authorities to also be a source of interest to China inspite of her position as the foreign minister of Australia.
The Chinese arrested, amongst others, Malaysian born Alfread Gomez, a Crown executive, is known to remain behind bars being interrogated in China on the offences of procuring clients for gambling in Macau and aiding in the commission of illegal activities including gambling (which is illegal in China) and money laundering.
Gomez and his fellow Crown executives currently in detention, in the interests of self preservation are said by friends in Malaysia to have sung like canaries in detention.
A couple of the detainees in last year’s raid in China are known to have been “released on bail” a method the Chinese often use to track down associates that have escaped their dragnet the first time round.
It is widely believed that some of Crown’s board including a former government minister under the Howard government is also, according to sources close to the Chinese government, on the radar of Chinese authorities and being closely monitored by them.
The former Howard government minister and other members of Crown’s board are said to have been compromised by Chinese agents some time before the raids.
The Chinese are believed to have built up large personal dossiers on each of the Australian government officials who have worked with or assisted others in their breaches of Chinese anti-gambling and anti money laundering laws.
A source close to Gomez’s family has also confirmed that high level corruption in Australia involving the gaming industry as a trap and conduit extends to Australian judges, diplomats, the police forces, individual politicians and by association both major political parties of Australia.
A Malaysian official who spoke on condition of anonymity said that the statement by Julie Bishop last August about her concerns about corruption allegations against the Malaysian government and its prime minister were not responded to by Putrajaya because officials in Putrajaya knew much more about the illicit activities of Australian government and many of its top officials than what people like Julie Bishop claimed to know about the Malaysians.
And the advice to officials in Puterajaya was not to respond or to say anything publicly about Julie Bishop or anyone else pointing fingers at Malaysia.
Operation Fox Hunt, the Xie Jin Peng government’s worldwide drag net to entrap and return to the mainland corrupt officials assisted by the likes of Crown Casino and its political connections in Australia is said to be paying significant dividends to the Chinese government.
Additionally it is also said that the connection between big business and Australian politicians is something Chinese intelligence have known about for some time.
Chinese money laundering is widespread in Australia according to the source.
Most money laundering in Australia is conducted through the purchase of real estate at highly inflated prices with the assistance of Australian government agencies who often turn the other way and Australian banks who facilitate the conveyance of large sums of money illegally siphoned out of China using fake invoices, banking and financial instruments often aided indirectly by Australian government agencies.
The threat of the death penalty if found guilty on return to China is an excuse that Australia has used effectively to provide refuge from the law for Chinese citizens suspected of laundering large sums of money taken out of Chinese government institutions illegally by corrupt Chinese officials.
Australian law prohibits Australia’s government agencies returning anyone regardless of their crime to a capital punishment jurisdiction.
An ABC Four Corners programme which was aired in Australian on the night of 6 March 2017 has identified part of a very large problem which has undermined the credibility of the Australian government, the integrity of its immigration and financial system.
It possibly has also raised concerns about high level corruption in Australian government from its close association to the large corporate sector much of it never reported widely within Australia.
Malaysian police sources have identified a number of triad syndicates running junkets that have successfully targeted high profile lawyers, judges and politicians in Queensland, Victoria, New South Wales on whom they rely favours for.
The stench of corruption in judges and politicians has heated up in recent months with revelations by notorious Russian hacker Alexei Kuznetsov who hacked into the personal and private emails and phones of Queensland judges, politicians, lawyers and businessmen threatening to drip feed of the information through the dark web and social media.
As the heat on corruption in Australia is turned up, no one it seems is game enough to explain why and under what authority the Australian governments of the Gillard, Rudd and Abbott era over the past decade donated between US$88,000,000 to $340,000,000 to Hillary Clinton’s Global Initiative (CGI).
The CGI it has been reported was a private foundation and a pay to play scheme run by the Clintons to fund Hillary Clinton’s failed tilt at the US presidency.
Email inquiries and requests for more information to government agencies and members of parliament in Australia has been met by a stony silence from both sides of parliament.
*BRN EXCLUSIVE* Financial industry WHISTLEBLOWER lifts the lid on 16 years of bank scandals and abuses. This could be what tips pollies over into fully understanding that a Royal Commission is inevitable and essential.
With 16 years of experience in the Australian banking and finance sector, Pieter Van Der Woude gives you his insider story of how bankers operate.
Whistleblower's Explosive Revelations | | Bank Reform Now Australia
Whistleblower's Explosive Revelations | | Bank Reform Now Australia
See more at BANKREFORMNOW.COM.AU
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Bank Reform Now Narev won't be too happy today ... and neither will Thorburn >> www.smh.com.au/.../comminsure-is-like-an-episode...
CommInsure is like an episode of Yes Minister
Like · Reply · 16 · March 8 at 9:06am
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Bank Reform Now Andrew - how likely is it that Americans can rise up and demand real reforms to the corrupt / criminal system that has been imposed upon them?
Like · Reply · 2 · March 9 at 6:41am
Andrew Reagan I have my doubts. A lot of distractions both with nonsense. However we have seen a surge in protests nothing like we had during Nam but there's been protest by the new man in charge as it pertains to his treatment and comments about women and him being buddy buddy with the fossil fuels industry and him signing off on the OK to build the pipeline through native American reservation. You know the place where they were forcefully relocated to during the 1800s? So it's possible we will see a raise up but I still have my doubts. Good thing is some too big to fail institutions withdrew financial support for the pipeline. Because they had angry customers. Which is baby steps but definitely a start. Long way to go. Must remain on top of these situations. A lot of corruption in a lots of sectors all at once. It's a mess.
Like · Reply · 2 · March 9 at 6:58am
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Bank Reform Now Andrew - keep in touch - we are working on something that might catch on in the States. It's a three step reform program which packs a punch that supports people getting a fair go. Our rulers won't like .... as we say over here "tough luck..!!"
Unlike · Reply · 2 · March 9 at 9:09am · Edited
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Hope Smith This is the first article in years that has mentioned the crooked dealings of RAMS/WESTPAC! Grateful the crooks are under the spotlight finally! Bring on those jail terms!
There are some interesting times indeed ahead for Julia Gillard and her cronies in crime. Ralph Blewitt has penned a letter to police offering to open up and tell all, even if it has consequences for him. Gillard may not be flying high with the United Nations for much longer.
Over the weekend Ralph Blewitt submitted this notice to Western Australia Police.
Police will have their own view about what charges should flow from their investigations - but Ralph's position which he makes so clearly in this letter will have to be taken into account.
Put yourself in Ralph's shoes. He faces an uncertain future. He is under no compulsion to return to Australia, he's voluntarily making himself available to police.
Ralph knows full well that his destiny is in the hands of authorities. It must have been very, very tempting to drop the whole AWU matter and just get on with his very full life. But he hasn't done that. And I admire him for his guts and sense of right and wrong.
Dear Detective Sergeant (Name withheld),
I have recently become insulin dependent in the management of chronic Diabetes Type 2.
My wife and carer Ruby and I are adjusting to managing daily insulin injections and I have to be a little more prudent in managing my movements with a lot more pre-planning.
May I ask a few questions about my attendance at your offices “to deal with the matter”?
Will I be under arrest?
Will I be under caution?
Do police anticipate charging me with any offence(s)?
If so what offences?
If so will I be bailed, remanded or summonsed to appear in court?
Will I be permitted to leave Australia and return to my home in Malaysia after the meeting with you “to deal with the matter”? (my wife and carer Ruby does not yet have a long term visa to remain in Australia).
Since late 2012 I have been available to and actively assisting police in their enquiries about the secret commissions paid by Thiess executives through the AWU Workplace Reform Association and the associated frauds, forgeries and other offences that I observed and was a part of from 1991 to 1995.
I want to tell all that I know - and I wish to co-operate with police and the courts by pleading guilty to the offences I know I helped others commit.
I am, however, not willing to cooperate in the furtherance and coverup of the offences of my co-offenders, particularly Julia GILLARD and Bruce WILSON.
I did not set out to commit any offence of my own volition.
I will not plead guilty to charges singling me out to take the fall on behalf of others. I was part of a criminal conspiracy. I didn't have the ability to do what I did without direction of others.
Every time I offended during the 1991 to 1995 course of conduct I did so at the behest (as Ms GILLARD put it during her exit interview from Slater and Gordon) of Bruce WILSON and/or Julia GILLARD.
Where I completed the application to incorporate the AWU Workplace Reform Association, so did GILLARD.
I wrote what GILLARD and WILSON told me to write.
It would be unjust and wrong just to charge GILLARD and not to charge me.
These were offences in which we were jointly involved. The same applies in reverse - it would be dishonest and unjust to charge me but not to charge my co-offenders WILSON and GILLARD as we were acting together.
When I signed the false document, Specific Power of Attorney I knew that GILLARD was not in the room to witness it. I knew the document was not signed on 4 February 1992 as it falsely states. I knew I was creating a false document and I admit to that offence. However I did not act alone and I am concerned that the courts and the public would get the wrong impression about the criminal behaviour involved in making that false document if GILLARD and WILSON are not charged with me.
When I conspired with WILSON and GILLARD to buy the Kerr Street property I wrote out a cheque for about $67,000 from the AWU Workplace Reform Association cheque book. The entry in the Slater and Gordon Trust Account ledger says the money came from me, not the association. That is false. I know that Bill Ludwig’s lawyer Con Sciacca sent a fax to GILLARD’s law firm on the day I paid the money in. The contents of that fax can only have been in the furtherance of fraud and I will consider it a neglect of police duty if that fax is not seized and produced for me to consider - as it is apparently central in the efforts to fraudulently represent that the $67,000 came from me and not the Association GILLARD, WILSON and I fraudulently set up.
Detective Sergeant, I will tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth. There is a very important proviso in that statement - that it is the whole truth.
I didn’t set out to create the AWU Workplace Reform Association. I wouldn’t have a clue where to start. I did not brief any lawyer to act for me or to give me legal advice about incorporating the association. GILLARD was not acting as my lawyer, she was in on the conspiracy.
I look forward to meeting with you to tell all and “to deal with the matter” in its entirety once and for all.
Regards Ralph Blewitt.
Gillard and Wilson may have managed to cover their tracks so far, but I personally feel the truth is about to be told, and their run is about to come to an abrupt end.
The money Gillard has been gifting to the “Clinton Foundation” may never be recovered (Nearly half a billion dollars). The damage she has done to Australia during her governance is also irreversible in the short term.
It is now Australia needs to turn to honest government willing to govern for the people, not their own rotten vested interests!
Michael McGarvie's wife works for Slater and Gordon and his Howard Bowles must know the trust accounting rules for funds passed through trusts for the deposit on a house. What do you think about this theory from one on the investigative reporters that Howard Bowles was 'spying on'?
ATO Commissioner asked for tax ruling on "the scheme Bernard cooked up" for GILLARD
Monday, 20 February 2017
Moments like this make it all worthwhile!
KC read our post yesterday about GILLARD and the "scheme Bernard cooked up" to provide her with a lump sum "loan".
Another of our brilliant readers and regular contributors had provided a professional tax litigator's view on the scheme/combination/conspiracy. Yesterday we published that on the website, today KC has dispatched this note to the Commissioner of Taxation.
Just magnificent work, thank you to all concerned.
Sent this off to the ATO (to whom I remit close to $900K a year). Be interesting to see what response I get.
Commissioner of Taxation
I write to seek a tax ruling relative to the apparent accepted practice of a corporation providing a loan to employees, and then, over time, forgiving the loan, as some form of incentive/bonus scheme to extend the time staff remain in the employment of the corporation.
This would appear, most easily understood in the practice of Slater & Gordon expose on
As a substantial employer I seek clarification from the ATO as to the clear precedent set by this established, if somewhat unusual method of remunerating staff whilst, apparently avoiding taxation obligations.
I would also seek clarification as to whether the forgiveness of this loan, over time, is also a deductable expense for the employer.
While I would understand that Slater & Gordon are a large and powerful law firm with deep connections into the body politic this country is still the land of the “fair go”. If this matter is known to the ATO, which I am aware has been brought to its attention, is the ATO turning a blind eye or at least is it determining no ATO fraud has occurred and payment arrangements, by way of a forgiven loan is not taxable income. If this is in fact the case it should be available to all businesses to offer a salary package with this type of tax free incentive included.
The White House
Office of the Press Secretary
For Immediate Release
February 09, 2017
Presidential Executive Order on Enforcing Federal Law with Respect to Transnational Criminal Organizations and Preventing International Trafficking
- - - - - - -
ENFORCING FEDERAL LAW WITH RESPECT TO TRANSNATIONAL CRIMINAL ORGANIZATIONS AND PREVENTING INTERNATIONAL TRAFFICKING
By the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America, it is hereby ordered as follows:
Section 1. Purpose. Transnational criminal organizations and subsidiary organizations, including transnational drug cartels, have spread throughout the Nation, threatening the safety of the United States and its citizens. These organizations derive revenue through widespread illegal conduct, including acts of violence and abuse that exhibit a wanton disregard for human life. They, for example, have been known to commit brutal murders, rapes, and other barbaric acts.
These groups are drivers of crime, corruption, violence, and misery. In particular, the trafficking by cartels of controlled substances has triggered a resurgence in deadly drug abuse and a corresponding rise in violent crime related to drugs. Likewise, the trafficking and smuggling of human beings by transnational criminal groups risks creating a humanitarian crisis. These crimes, along with many others, are enriching and empowering these organizations to the detriment of the American people.
A comprehensive and decisive approach is required to dismantle these organized crime syndicates and restore safety for the American people.
Sec. 2. Policy. It shall be the policy of the executive branch to:
(a) strengthen enforcement of Federal law in order to thwart transnational criminal organizations and subsidiary organizations, including criminal gangs, cartels, racketeering organizations, and other groups engaged in illicit activities that present a threat to public safety and national security and that are related to, for example:
(i) the illegal smuggling and trafficking of humans, drugs or other substances, wildlife, and weapons;
(ii) corruption, cybercrime, fraud, financial crimes, and intellectual-property theft; or
(iii) the illegal concealment or transfer of proceeds derived from such illicit activities.
(b) ensure that Federal law enforcement agencies give a high priority and devote sufficient resources to efforts to identify, interdict, disrupt, and dismantle transnational criminal organizations and subsidiary organizations, including through the investigation, apprehension, and prosecution of members of such organizations, the extradition of members of such organizations to face justice in the United States and, where appropriate and to the extent permitted by law, the swift removal from the United States of foreign nationals who are members of such organizations;
(c) maximize the extent to which all Federal agencies share information and coordinate with Federal law enforcement agencies, as permitted by law, in order to identify, interdict, and dismantle transnational criminal organizations and subsidiary organizations;
(d) enhance cooperation with foreign counterparts against transnational criminal organizations and subsidiary organizations, including, where appropriate and permitted by law, through sharing of intelligence and law enforcement information and through increased security sector assistance to foreign partners by the Attorney General and the Secretary of Homeland Security;
(e) develop strategies, under the guidance of the Secretary of State, the Attorney General, and the Secretary of Homeland Security, to maximize coordination among agencies -- such as through the Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Forces (OCDETF), Special Operations Division, the OCDETF Fusion Center, and the International Organized Crime Intelligence and Operations Center -- to counter the crimes described in subsection (a) of this section, consistent with applicable Federal law; and
(f) pursue and support additional efforts to prevent the operational success of transnational criminal organizations and subsidiary organizations within and beyond the United States, to include prosecution of ancillary criminal offenses, such as immigration fraud and visa fraud, and the seizure of the implements of such organizations and forfeiture of the proceeds of their criminal activity.
Sec. 3. Implementation. In furtherance of the policy set forth in section 2 of this order, the Secretary of State, the Attorney General, the Secretary of Homeland Security, and the Director of National Intelligence, or their designees, shall co-chair and direct the existing interagency Threat Mitigation Working Group (TMWG), which shall:
(a) work to support and improve the coordination of Federal agencies' efforts to identify, interdict, investigate, prosecute, and dismantle transnational criminal organizations and subsidiary organizations within and beyond the United States;
(b) work to improve Federal agencies' provision, collection, reporting, and sharing of, and access to, data relevant to Federal efforts against transnational criminal organizations and subsidiary organizations;
(c) work to increase intelligence and law enforcement information sharing with foreign partners battling transnational criminal organizations and subsidiary organizations, and to enhance international operational capabilities and cooperation;
(d) assess Federal agencies' allocation of monetary and personnel resources for identifying, interdicting, and dismantling transnational criminal organizations and subsidiary organizations, as well as any resources that should be redirected toward these efforts;
(e) identify Federal agencies' practices, any absence of practices, and funding needs that might hinder Federal efforts to effectively combat transnational criminal organizations and subsidiary organizations;
(f) review relevant Federal laws to determine existing ways in which to identify, interdict, and disrupt the activity of transnational criminal organizations and subsidiary organizations, and ascertain which statutory authorities, including provisions under the Immigration and Nationality Act, could be better enforced or amended to prevent foreign members of these organizations or their associates from obtaining entry into the United States and from exploiting the United States immigration system;
(g) in the interest of transparency and public safety, and in compliance with all applicable law, including the Privacy Act, issue reports at least once per quarter detailing convictions in the United States relating to transnational criminal organizations and their subsidiaries;
(h) to the extent deemed useful by the Co-Chairs, and in their discretion, identify methods for Federal agencies to coordinate, as permitted by law, with State, tribal, and local governments and law enforcement agencies, foreign law enforcement partners, public-health organizations, and non-governmental organizations in order to aid in the identification, interdiction, and dismantling of transnational criminal organizations and subsidiary organizations;
(i) to the extent deemed useful by the Co-Chairs, and in their discretion, consult with the Office of National Drug Control Policy in implementing this order; and
(j) within 120 days of the date of this order, submit to the President a report on transnational criminal organizations and subsidiary organizations, including the extent of penetration of such organizations into the United States, and issue additional reports annually thereafter to describe the progress made in combating these criminal organizations, along with any recommended actions for dismantling them.
Sec. 4. General Provisions. (a) Nothing in this order shall be construed to impair or otherwise affect:
(i) the authority granted by law to an executive department or agency, or the head thereof; or
(ii) the functions of the Director of the Office of Management and Budget relating to budgetary, administrative, or legislative proposals.
(b) This order shall be implemented consistent with applicable law and subject to the availability of appropriations.
(c) This order is not intended to, and does not, create any right or benefit, substantive or procedural, enforceable at law or in equity by any party against the United States, its departments, agencies, or entities, its officers, employees, or agents, or any other person.
DONALD J. TRUMP
THE WHITE HOUSE,
February 9, 2017
Trump vows to fight 'epidemic' of human trafficking
By The Associated Press
WASHINGTON — Feb 23, 2017, 2:59 PM ET
Donald Trump, Ivanka TrumpThe Associated Press
WatchInvestigating the Dark Underworld of Sex Trafficking in Holland
President Donald Trump says he will bring the "full force and weight" of the U.S. government to combat an "epidemic" of human trafficking.
The president is meeting at the White House with senior advisers and representatives of organizations that deal with trafficking. His daughter, Ivanka Trump, is among those in attendance.
Trump calls human trafficking a problem that is "not talked about enough." He says he will order the departments of Justice and Homeland Security to take a hard look at the resources they are devoting to addressing the issue.