$200,000 Was Donated To A Liberal Party Fundraising Arm By A Mysterious Monaco Company

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A mysterious Monaco-based company for which there are no available records gave $200,000 to a Liberal Party fundraising body which a corruption inquiry has heard was used to “disguise donations from prohibited donors”.

The Free Enterprise Foundation (FEF), a Liberal and National Party “associated entity”, received the donation – one of the largest single donations of the 2012-13 financial year – from “Akira Investments”, a company of unknown origins.

According to the SMH, Akira doesn’t appear on either Monaco’s or Australia’s company records. The company has not lodged a political disclosure form with the Australian Electoral Commission (AEC) and it cannot be chased up as the AEC does not have international reach.

According to the AEC website: “If a donation is made to an Associated Entity with the intention of benefiting a particular political party, it is considered to be made to that political party.”

At a recent Independent Commission Against Corruption inquiry looking into political donations in NSW it was alleged FEF was used to disguise donations from prohibited donors.

In April ICAC heard at least $165,000 was paid to the FEF by property developers and Australian Water Holdings, the AFR reports.

Counsel assisting ICAC, Geoffrey Watson SC, said ICAC would be investigating any other alleged cases of misuse of the FEF.

There’s more here.

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