NBN Co has stood down two of its employees over alleged involvement in the leaking of documents which resulted in last week’s AFP raids on Labor offices.
A spokesperson for the company confirmed that two employees had been stood aside while the AFP investigation was taking place. NBN Co did not name the employees or wish to comment further.
This news follows a dramatic few days for the government and the NBN, after police raided the offices of Labor senator Stephen Conroy, as well as two staffers of shadow communications minister Jason Clare.
Most recently it was revealed that communications minister Mitch Fifield was aware that the AFP was investigating a referral from the NBN.
Fifield says that he did not communicate this to the prime minister and denied having any involvement with the AFP investigation.
“I have had no interaction with the AFP during their investigation. Nor did I have any knowledge of, nor involvement in, matters that occurred this week, as was confirmed by the AFP commissioner yesterday,” he said in a statement.
The raids were the result of a 6-month investigation after NBN Co called the AFP to investigate leaked documents.
These documents included details on how the NBN was falling behind on its rollout, as well as the remediation bill for Telstra’s copper network which would be 10 times what was first expected.
The Australian Federal Police no longer have access to seized documents after the Labor party claimed parliamentary privilege.
AFP commissioner Andrew Colvin confirmed that the documents seized have now been sealed, and can’t be accessed until the matter goes before the Senate.
With parliament now dissolved until after the election, the AFP will have to wait until it comes back before the matter can be decided.