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Tag Archives: Chris Merritt

NSW ICAC kept witness’s amnesia report secret for five years

The NSW government’s anti-corruption agency faces accu­sations of misleading parliament after evidence emerged showing it had failed to disclose that one of its most important reports ­relied on evidence from a brain-­damaged witness who had ­amnesia. The witness, investment banker Paul Gardner Brook, has a cognitive impairment after a frontal lobe ...

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ICAC leaps ahead but stumbles at vital hurdle

It has taken a while, but the NSW government’s anti-corruption agency is showing signs of having learned something from its recent history. Initiatives unveiled by the NSW Independent Commission Against Corruption have the ­potential to change this agency’s procedures for the better. A chief executive is to be appointed and ...

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How ICAC got it wrong on Ransley, embarrassing NSW

This week’s exoneration of businessman Craig Ransley has provided a very important lesson for the NSW government and that state’s media, if they are willing to learn. Five years ago, a NSW government agency conducted an inquiry that, unlike the courts, was not at arm’s length from the government and ...

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ICAC should be investigated over mine licence evidence

Thanks to the latest disclosure under parliamentary privilege, it is now arguable that one of the most important reports on corruption ever presented to the NSW parliament was so misleading it ­deserves to be pulped. The 2013 report on Operation Jasper, by the state’s Independent Commission Against Corruption, ignored secret ...

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NuCoal seizure by NSW casts pall over US tariff talks

The NSW government’s expropriation of US-owned assets worth $131 million threatens to complicate Australia’s efforts to be exempted from threatened tariffs on imports of steel and aluminium. The expropriation by NSW was raised by the Americans during last month’s talks in Washington between Trade Minister Steve Ciobo and US Trade ...

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ICAC ruling puts a criminal cloud over ministerial discretion

At least one member of the NSW parliament has twigged to the implications of last year’s conviction of former Labor minister Ian Macdonald for misconduct in public office. The Liberal Party’s Peter Phelps spelled out those implications on Tuesday in a statement to the state’s upper house that should send ...

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Barry O’Farrell victim looks to Trump for NuCoal redress

The welfare of a wheelchair-bound girl in Newcastle might not have been a priority for the NSW government when it expropriated coal exploration licences four years ago. But there is a growing view that it should have been. When that decision was made, it was portrayed by former premier Barry ...

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Joel Fitzgibbon backs shareholders who lost money in NuCoal case

Federal Labor’s Joel Fitzgibbon made a brief but very important intervention in the NuCoal affair this week that highlights the unjust treatment of that company’s shareholders. When the NSW Coalition government accepted ICAC’s recommendation and expropriated NuCoal’s exploration licence in 2014 it rejected an associated call for innocent parties to ...

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ICAC’s secret government talks

The NSW Independent Commission Against Corruption has been authorised by law to engage in undisclosed communications with the state government during the course of its inquiries, according to a draft report to state parliament. The draft report, which has been prepared by ICAC Inspector Bruce McClintock SC, rejects accusations of ...

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US disputes $131m coal seizure by NSW

Australian officials have been involved in confidential talks with the US aimed at heading off a formal trade dispute over the confiscation by NSW of US-owned assets worth $131 million. Unless the affair is resolved, Australia could come under pressure from the Trump administration to agree to international arbitration aimed ...

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