Home > Politics - Domestic, The EYE-BALL HGZ [Harry's Growl Zone] > EYE-BALL’s Harry’ Growl on – Australian Gangsters Inc Part III – Gillard and the ALP by another name!!!

EYE-BALL’s Harry’ Growl on – Australian Gangsters Inc Part III – Gillard and the ALP by another name!!!

August 18, 2012
Latest ‘Harry’s Growl’ Posts:

9th Aug:

Australian Gangsters Inc – Part II – Gillard and the ALP by another name!!!

5th Aug:

Wayne Swan – wannabe PM – Dickheads come and Dickheads go –

26th July:

Australian Gangsters Inc Part I – Gillard and the ALP by another name!!!

22nd July:

– Gillard Spoofs – about the only way to survive!!!

July 20th:
Shame … Shame … Shame … Murdoch Media to blame for the Global descent into darkness!!!

July 14th:
Harry’s Political Updates …
A Special report – Gillard facing History making dumping …

June 15th:
Harry’s Political Updates …
… a special report …
Larry Pickering Censored!

June 9th:
Harry’s Political Updates … Various stories …

June 4th:
Harry’s Political Updates … Various Stories …

June 2nd:
Harry’s Political Updates … Various Stories …

May 22nd:
Harry’s Political Updates … Various Stories …

May 10th:
‘Rome and the Mob’ … Craig Thompson survives yet again.

May 8th:
The Australian ALP Government – more corrupt and worse than Bikie Gangs …

April 24th:
The Peter SLIPPER affair – Harry’s take …

To see more EYE-BALL Harry’s Growl posts:
click here …

– Australian Gangsters Inc – Part III –
– Gillard and the ALP by another name!!!
| Author: EYE-BALL’s Harry’s Growl | 18th Aug 2012 |
The Gillard AWU scandal made small gains through the week – a journalist from News Ltd found himself on the unemployed list after his question to Gillard on Monday last about Slater and Gordon requesting AWU for permission to release documents.

Gillards expression when the question was asked in the middle of her press conference on the Huston Asylum report said it all.  She was not happy.But at least some journalist had the balls to put the question in the first place.

Some News sources have come out and covered the story from the PM’s side of the fence. One questions whether this is clandestine defence aimed at keeping the story alive, or genuine concern for the damage the story is doing to Gillard’s creditability.

This story gains or loses creditability of a number of issues:

  1. The ALP Caucus – how many of them knew of the AWU scandal and Gillard’s status as a Lawyer before she entered Politics?
  2. After Paul Howes stated in relation to the HSU affair, that he will do anything to help clean and clear out Union corruption – why is he hesitating in granting permission to allow Slater and Gordon to release confidential documents pertaining to the AWU scandal 1992-95?  If not just to clear up the facts surrounding her accusers, and to allow the Police to do their job in pursuing the people who committed the alleged crimes.

‘The Australia’ ran a follow-up story to the Ralph Blewitt story they did two weeks ago – this was concerning an interview with a former S&G equity Partner named – Nick Styant-Browne.  That story is produced below:

Revealed: Julia Gillard lost her job after law firm’s secret investigation

| Author: HEDLEY THOMAS, NATIONAL CHIEF CORRESPONDENT | Date: 18th Aug 2012 | Link to On-Line Story. |

JULIA Gillard left her job as a partner with law firm Slater & Gordon as a direct result of a secret internal probe in 1995 into controversial work she had done for her then boyfriend, a union boss accused of corruption, The Weekend Australian can reveal.

Nick Styant-Browne, a former equity partner of the firm, broke a 17-year silence yesterday to reveal that the firm’s probe included a confidential formal interview with the Prime Minister – then an industrial lawyer – on September 11, 1995, which was “recorded and transcribed”.

In the interview, Ms Gillard stated that she could not categorically rule out that she had personally benefited from union funds in the renovation of her Melbourne house, according to Mr Styant-Browne.

She said in the interview that she believed she had paid for all the work and materials, and had receipts, which she later produced.

The firm’s probe revolved around Ms Gillard’s work since mid-1992 for the Australian Workers Union and her then boyfriend – the AWU’s ambitious leader at the time, Bruce Wilson – as well as her direct role in establishing the AWU Workplace Reform Association for Mr Wilson.

Mr Styant-Browne’s revelations today mark the first time that anyone among the former and present partners of her employer before she started her political career has spoken on the record about matters that have controversially dogged Ms Gillard since 1995.

Mr Styant-Browne, now a Seattle-based lawyer, said the partnership “took a very serious view” of these and other matters, “and accepted her resignation”.

“The firm was scrupulous to ensure these matters were both properly investigated and Ms Gillard was given every opportunity to explain her involvement,” Mr Styant-Browne said. “Ms Gillard conveyed to me that she thought she had been ‘shabbily’ treated after eight years of service.”

In response to a series of detailed questions from The Weekend Australian, a spokesman for Ms Gillard said last night she had “made clear that she was not involved in any wrongdoing, and has dealt with these allegations previously”. “The Prime Minister maintains good relations with Slater & Gordon,” he said.

The legal entity that Ms Gillard began to establish for Mr Wilson from mid-1992 was used by Mr Wilson and his then friend, AWU bagman and West Australian branch head Ralph Blewitt, to allegedly corruptly receive hundreds of thousands of dollars from large companies.

The companies were told their money would pay for safety and training of AWU members on major work sites. However, the funds were allegedly siphoned off for purposes including the personal use of Mr Wilson and Mr Blewitt. At the time, the AWU’s then national leaders, Ian Cambridge and Bill Ludwig, were not made aware of the entity’s existence. They were unaware that large sums of money had been going into accounts linked to the association, and that those funds were subsequently withdrawn by Mr Wilson and Mr Blewitt for purposes including the purchase of a $230,000 house in Kerr Street, Fitzroy. Mr Cambridge called on the federal Labor government to establish a royal commission into what he regarded as serious and criminal rorting by union officials.

Ms Gillard has repeatedly and strenuously denied that she had any knowledge of what the association that she had set up was going to be used for. She has also denied receiving any benefit from the funds. She has repeatedly rejected claims made in parliament that renovations to her own house in Melbourne in the early-to-mid 1990s were part-funded by money allegedly siphoned off by Mr Wilson.

Mr Styant-Browne revealed yesterday that Ms Gillard had said in her formal interview on September 11, 1995, that “she could not categorically deny AWU union or (AWU) Workplace Reform Association monies” had been used in the renovation of her own house in Melbourne. He said she had subsequently produced receipts for work done on the Abbotsford property.

In a two-page statement to The Weekend Australian, Mr Styant-Browne also revealed unusual circumstances surrounding what he described as Ms Gillard’s “legal and related work to establish the AWU Workplace Reform Association in Western Australia”.

He said that in her formal interview, Ms Gillard had confirmed that “she did not open a file at the firm” to establish the association, and that she could not at the time recall any reason why a file was not opened. He said that she had stated that no other lawyer at the firm worked on the matter, and “to her recollection, no other lawyer was consulted”. She stated in the interview that she “was not involved in opening or operating any bank accounts for the association,” Mr Styant-Browne said.

Referring to the recorded interview, Mr Styant-Browne said: “She understood the purpose of the association was to hold re-election funds for union officials contributed by individual union members and fundraisers. She stated it was referred to as a re-election or slush fund. She had been in a relationship with Mr Wilson for nearly four years commencing in late 1991.

“She and Mr Wilson attended the auction of 85 Kerr Street, Fitzroy in early 1993 where Mr Wilson made a successful bid for the house which was purchased in the name of Ralph Blewitt. Mr Blewitt did not attend the auction. She understood the house was a property investment made by Mr Blewitt, and that Mr Wilson would live there as a trusted tenant. She believed this arrangement suited them both.

“She had extensively renovated her own house in Abbotsford. Mr Wilson had assisted in the renovations. She believed she had paid for all the work and materials, and had receipts which she agreed to produce. She was aware someone had sought payment from the AWU for work and materials he had supplied for the house. He was mistaken or misinformed. But she could not categorically deny AWU union or Workplace Association monies had been used for any of the work. As at the time of the interview, her relationship with Mr Wilson had recently ended.”

Mr Styant-Browne said the conduct of Slater & Gordon in waiving its conveyancing fee for the purchase of the Fitzroy house and lending $150,000 to complete the sale was not unusual.

“Like many law firms, Slater & Gordon regularly did discounted or free conveyances for clients who held office in its client corporations or organisations. Like any labour law firm, the fees for these conveyances for union officials were regularly waived, ” he said.

“Slater & Gordon conducted a solicitors’ contributory mortgage practice, which made loans secured by first mortgage over properties up to a percentage of a sworn valuation obtained for the specific purpose of the loan. A partner of the firm was designated as the trustee for the mortgage on behalf of the contributors, and signed the mortgage in that capacity. Legal fees or disbursements for the mortgage formed part of the loan, as was the case for the Kerr Street mortgage. The Kerr Street conveyance and mortgage were both unexceptionable transactions for the firm’s conveyancing and mortgage practice.

“As for the florid allegations suggesting a cover-up by Slater & Gordon made in some radio interviews and online media, they are utterly absurd.”

Explaining his reasons for speaking out after a long silence, Mr Styant-Browne, 54, who is not a member of any political party, said: “It has recently become clear to me that there is a genuine public interest in this story, which has prompted my statement now”.

The Australian revealed earlier this month that Mr Wilson’s former close friend, Mr Blewitt, wanted to expose the extent of his alleged scam with Mr Wilson, and that he would admit his own wrongdoing if he received an indemnity from prosecution. Mr Blewitt, 66, said: “My greatest fear is that I incriminate myself but this has to come out now”.

The Australian has also reported that internal documents, newly released under Freedom of Information, from an exhaustive police probe at the time show detectives suspected Mr Wilson and Mr Blewitt, were “crooks” and wanted them criminally prosecuted over a $400,000-plus alleged fraud. The documents from the police file include letters showing leaders of the AWU, which remains the most influential industrial supporter of the federal Labor government, were deeply annoyed that the two men were not charged with criminal offences.

The managing director of Slater & Gordon, Andrew Grech, has begun contacting its former clients including Mr Blewitt, Mr Wilson and the AWU, “asking that they agree to waive their right to legal privilege attaching to lawyer-client communication so that we can respond to the public allegations that have been made”.

“We are not prepared to have our firm’s reputation impugned by the allegations relating to these matters, which occurred almost two decades ago,” Mr Grech told The Australian last week.

… read more on-line …

This story is a soft-pedal compared with the Pickering offerings.  But then the PM blackmailed News Ltd and Fairfax in Sept 2011 when this story first broke to be carefull in running this story again.

What Gillard has over the mainstream media is wildly speculated upon, anything from ‘phone hacking’ to AFP evidence of other types of illegal activities.  Whatever it is it is sufficient to have the mainstream media very wary of overstepping boundaries.  The sacked News reporter during the week being an example of how sensitive the story is.

It has been noticeable that named Law firms associated with this scandal, i.e. Slater and Gordon, and Maurice Blackburn have both stepped up media advertising campaigns across Eastern States.  In a cynical context this could be seen as an attempt to paint themselves a different shade of ‘grey’ given their silence and implication in this matter for so long.

They obviously feel that the scandal will do them harm – hence the beefed up advertising – this confirms they hiding and guilty of something – what that might be will hopefully be revealed in the near future.

The other interesting point of discussion is the ‘Pickering Post’ website closure.  Pickering via his Facebook page has claimed that the site was attacked by a DDoS – [Denial of Service].   Contact with a staffer at the ISP server – [crazydomains.com.au] confirmed it was a server overload problem caused by the public’s interest in the site.

This overload would have been caused by the radio promo’s about this story Pickering did in Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane during the week. The ISP indicated the site needed a designated server to handle the traffic being generated,  all they could do was suspend the service to protect their other clients and their services being further disrupted.

This slant on his site problems is far different to the story put out there by Pickering about a DDoS attack.  A comment request to have him clear it up has not received a response.   All Pickering has to do is pay for a designated server – about $2k a year – and the traffic problem would be solved – if that really is the problem.

The scandal story thus far has both sides, and all the players in the middle telling ‘porkies’ mixed with some truth, a reluctance to answer questions, and all the while some serious accusations are being floated in the public domain and the public are enraged.

How dare a PM be involved in this sort of scandal?  How dare she bring this type of disrepute upon Australia and in the eyes of the rest of the World?

Gillard must come clean and clear up the smear to her Prime Ministership. Failure to do so and the longer she stays silent – only confirms she is involved in some capacity.   Her status and creditability as someone who is deserving to serve as Prime Minister – has to be fully explained and clarified.   If she has guilt of any kind – then to protect the office of the Prime Minster she should resign voluntarily.

If her past is ‘shady’ and her involvement with Wilson and Blewitt is as has been alleged – nothing short of dismissal by the GG is acceptable unless she resigns of her own accord.   The Independents on this matter also have to be convinced to bring about a scenario where she no longer has the support of the House.

In an after thought way – this type of ‘shady’ past confirmation surely prompts the question about the existing vetting process of potential Federal and State Parliamentarians.

It also asks us to try and understand how the ALP and the MP’s serving in the House and Senate could have allowed someone with an exposed scandal in their history to become the PM.   Their hope that this scandal would never see the light of day gives insight to one of the many things wrong with the way Politicians behave and mislead the public.

How must Kevin Rudd feel – how do millions of Labour supporters feel at the moment – shortchanged is about as good as it can be explained.

The Opinion polls indicate the PM has been on the nose for a very long time.  That stench is real and this scandal proves the point – the electorate can always sniff out a flawed person.  Pity they could not have done it before the 2010 election.

Here is a scenario … Shorten and Arbib along with Paul Howes as the Ludwig AWU stooge, plotted Rudd’s downfall because Rudd wanted nothing to do with promoting Union hardliners into his Cabinet.

Gillard who owes Arbib for her seat in Parliament after she was unable to gain pre-selection anywhere in Victoria at either State of Federal level after the AWU scandal – he took her in so to speak and re-invented her creditability as a Unionist and now she owes the Unions big time.

You only have to review her inaction against Craig Thompson of HSU fame to tick that box.   She is only serving as the PM on the strength of Union support.

Shorten knows of Gillard’s past as does Arbib.  Arbib jumps ship after the Leadership spill in Mar 2012.  Shorten is now only a heart beat away and only has to pick his timing as to when he squeals and lets the AWU scandal out of the bag.

But before that happens he is caught up in his own sordid mess when a story is leaked that he shagged a staffed and got her pregnant.  The GG is not happy, and that is the other witches brew ingredient – Shorten is her son-in-law –  oh what a tangled web we weave … when we plot and try to deceive …

This story has many more weeks to play out – Pickering’s motive might be because Facebook banned him when he painted the PM with a massive ‘black dildo’ strapped on and pointed at those she wanted to intimidate.   It was true and brilliant Aussie humour.  Pickering was not pleased and this might have been where and when Pickering decided to ‘go after the bitch’.

Have your say where it counts: – contact your Local Federal Representative via the links below and let them know how you feel about this, or any other topic that you feel strongly about – or you can just post a comment below and let off some steam.

Links to Australian Parliamentary Website – MP’s:

EYE-BALL’s – Harry’s Growl

  1. August 18, 2012 at 10:24 am

    Another opinion was offered up by Sky News: http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?v=10151107724048139

  2. August 18, 2012 at 10:55 am
  3. August 18, 2012 at 11:03 am

    Published in The Australian today is a timeline of the Wilson Gillard AWU scandal:

    The political controversy that won’t go away

    | Author: HEDLEY THOMAS, NATIONAL CHIEF CORRESPONDENT | Date: Aug 18th 2012 | Link to On-Line Story. |

    JULIA Gillard’s dealings with the AWU continue to haunt her.


    1987: Julia Gillard is employed by Slater & Gordon, a Melbourne-based law firm, as a solicitor and is subsequently promoted in 1990 to the role of salaried partner of the firm.

    LATE 1991: Gillard, who has political ambitions, starts a romantic relationship with Bruce Wilson, a leading figure in the Australian Workers Union and a favourite of AWU heavyweight Bill Ludwig.

    LATE 1991-AUGUST 1995: Gillard performs much of the legal work for Wilson and the AWU’s branches in Western Australia and Victoria, which were controlled by Wilson and his union bagman, AWU official Ralph Blewitt.
    The most influential people in Sport

    EARLY-TO-MID 1992: Gillard does the legal work for Wilson and Blewitt to establish the AWU Workplace Reform Association, an entity registered in WA and subject to legislation. The association was supposed to promote training and safety on construction sites. The association’s rules, which were drafted by Gillard, do not permit union officials to benefit personally.

    1992-95: Wilson and Blewitt persuade large companies including Thiess and Woodside, which have major building projects staffed by AWU members, to make payments to the AWU Workplace Reform Association to promote training and safety for AWU members.

    1992-95: AWU national heads and other senior AWU figures are unaware that the association has been established or that hundreds of thousands of dollars are being raised from large companies.

    EARLY 1993: Gillard’s romantic and solicitor-client relationship with Wilson continues. Wilson moves to Melbourne to run the AWU in Victoria and organises the purchase for $230,000 of a house at 85 Kerr Street, Fitzroy, in the name of Blewitt, with Wilson having power of attorney.

    EARLY 1993: Gillard attends the auction with Wilson of the house at 85 Kerr Street, Fitzroy.

    MARCH 1993: The purchase of the house is settled. Cheques totalling about $70,000 and drawn from accounts directly related to the AWU Workplace Reform Association go into the purchase. Slater & Gordon’s mortgage lending arm lends $150,000 to Blewitt to buy the house.

    MARCH 1993-AUGUST 1995: Wilson lives in the house. Gillard visits regularly as Wilson’s girlfriend. Blewitt visits occasionally from Perth, where he lives and runs the WA branch of the AWU.

    AUGUST 1995: The AWU’s joint national secretary, Ian Cambridge (now a Fair Work Australia commissioner), Queensland AWU head Bill Ludwig and others identify irregularities in the Victorian branch’s financial accounts and start an internal investigation. Their investigations involve Robert McClelland, then a solicitor providing legal advice, and threats to call in police.

    AUGUST 1995: Wilson and Blewitt are made redundant by their branch, against the wishes of Cambridge and Ludwig, who suspect the pair have committed fraud and unsuccessfully try to stop the payouts with Federal Court injunctions.

    AUGUST-SEPTEMBER 1995: Gillard’s law partners at Slater & Gordon become concerned that her client is accused of misappropriating significant sums of money. The partners start a secret internal investigation. Gillard ends her relationship with Wilson. The firm stops acting for Wilson and Blewitt.

    SEPTEMBER 11, 1995: As part of the investigation, Gillard agrees to be questioned about her actions in a tape-recorded interview conducted by two other partners. A lengthy transcript of the interview is produced. The firm’s partners are surprised and disappointed at the findings of their investigation and make a joint decision that Gillard must leave the firm.

    OCTOBER 12, 1995: A Victorian government minister, Phil Gude, claims in state parliament that Gillard had been forced to leave Slater & Gordon, and that she was directly linked to the misappropriation of union funds, and that she had benefited from renovations to her own house, and that she had to pay money back to the AWU so that she and Wilson could “cover their tracks”. Gillard, who was an ALP Senate candidate, tells The Australian at the time: “Whether or not Mr Wilson was a client of mine is irrelevant. Each and every allegation raised about me is absolutely untrue; there is not a shred of truth in any of it.”

    Gillard adds that she has “no intention of leaving” Slater & Gordon.

    OCTOBER 1995: Gillard abruptly leaves Slater & Gordon.

    JANUARY 23, 1996: Cambridge writes to Laurie Brereton, then federal Labor minister for industrial relations, and requests a judicial inquiry or royal commission into how the union and Wilson have misused funds.

    Cambridge adds: “Quite frankly I am now certain that the Victorian affair goes a lot deeper than I had first suspected, and I am afraid that underlying the whole mess may be issues of serious corruption.”

    FEBRUARY 1996: The house at 85 Kerr Street, Fitzroy, is sold. The proceeds after the mortgage is repaid go to Wilson and Blewitt.

    APRIL 1996: The AWU hierarchy and Cambridge discover for the first time the existence of the AWU Workplace Reform Association, set up by Gillard four years earlier and controlled by Wilson and Blewitt. Cambridge traces dozens of cheques for hundreds of thousands of dollars that have gone through the association’s accounts without the union’s knowledge.

    MID-TO-LATE 1996: Police start fraud squad investigations in Western Australia and Victoria. Cambridge, Ludwig and the AWU want police to bring criminal charges and recover the funds.

    MID 1996: Gillard, having been unsuccessful in her Senate bid, becomes chief of staff to Victoria’s then opposition leader, John Brumby.

    FEBRUARY 2001: Liberal frontbencher Geoff Leigh accuses Gillard in Victorian parliament of having wrongly received $57,000 of AWU funds. Gillard rejects the claims, describing them as “malicious and unfounded abuse of parliamentary privilege”.

    NOVEMBER 2007: A fortnight before Labor’s federal election win, Glenn Milne, a News Limited senior political reporter, interviews Gillard. In a story headlined “A conman broke my heart” and published in Sunday newspapers, the then deputy opposition leader described her relationship with Wilson and her role as his solicitor, and stated: “I was young and naive. I am by no means the first person to find out that someone close turns out to be different to what you had believed them to be. I was obviously hurt when I was later falsely accused publicly of wrongdoing.” Wilson, drummed out of the union in 1995 and near-penniless, maintains his silence.

    AUGUST-SEPTEMBER last year: Fairfax Radio 2UE broadcaster Michael Smith, journalist Glenn Milne (then writing for The Australian) and Herald Sun commentator Andrew Bolt revisit the issue and republish allegations against Gillard, who responds in a fury to John Hartigan, the then chairman of News Limited Australia. The Australian newspaper publicly apologises to Gillard for an error made by Milne, who loses his role. Smith is banned from broadcasting an interview with a former union official with knowledge of the matters. Smith loses his job. Bolt considers resigning but stays on.

    JUNE THIS YEAR: Former federal attorney-general Robert McClelland, who had been sacked by Gillard after his support for Kevin Rudd in his leadership bid, resurrects the 1995 union funds scandal by making a speech in federal parliament in which he speaks of Gillard’s role then, and his own role as a lawyer for an opposing side. Gillard declines to comment.

    JUNE: The Australian receives additional documentary information and resumes investigations. Harry Nowicki, a former personal injury lawyer writing a history of the AWU, discloses his findings after extensive travel and interviews with key parties.

    THIS MONTH: The Australian interviews Blewitt who breaks his silence after 17 years. Blewitt admits there were “sham transactions” and seeks indemnity from prosecution for his role. Gillard declines to comment. Wayne Swan says it is “not a story”.

    THIS MONTH: The Australian discloses that newly released documents obtained under Freedom of Information show that fraud squad police and their legal adviser in Western Australia in 1996-97 regarded Wilson and Blewitt as crooks who should be prosecuted for criminal offences. Gillard declines to comment.

    THIS MONTH: Slater & Gordon lawyers reveal to The Australian that the firm is conducting an internal review. The firm asks the AWU for permission to lift a legal lid on highly sensitive files on the union scandal. Gillard declines to comment. AWU head Paul Howes declines to comment.

    TODAY: Nick Styant-Browne, a former equity partner at Slater & Gordon, breaks his silence and tells The Weekend Australian of serious concerns the firm held about Gillard’s conduct in the Wilson and AWU matters, resulting in her leaving her job. Gillard again denies being involved in any wrongdoing.

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    August 19, 2012 at 4:24 pm

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