Press Council was mislead by Slater and Gordon over Mark Baker article in The Age

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IN September 2013 the Press Council upheld a complaint by Slater and Gordon over Mark Baker's stories published in The Age and SMH.

The news report

Slater & Gordon complained that two statements in the report inaccurately and unfairly implied it was concealing the existence of a file about incorporation of the association and preventing or delaying release of the file to a person who was entitled to it (namely, the alleged client, Mr  Ralph Blewitt ). The first statement was that another law firm had been “pressing Slater & Gordon for more than a month” to enable Mr Blewitt “to gain access to the association incorporation file”. The second statement was that a former lawyer had “accused the firm of stalling” in providing access to the file.

The firm said that the journalist should have given it an opportunity to comment before the material was published. It said the journalist would then have been informed that it did not hold any files about incorporation of the association and the only documentation it knew of about the matter had been created by Ms Gillard and was not recorded by her in the firm’s system or held by it. 

"The only documentation Slater and Gordon knew of had been created by Gillard and was not held by the firm". Right.

In May 2013 the police raid turned up quite a bit of evidence about the file.


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Here is a selection of internal Slater and Gordon file notes.

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The great tragedy is that WA detectives were within days of executing a search warrant authorising them to seize documents from Slater and Gordon in Melbourne - when the WA DPP canned the investigation and prosecution.

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Australian Government "will neither confirm nor deny" the existence of documents linking Downer to the Trump/Russia allegations

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On 22 February I made this request of DFAT under the provisions of what was once a Freedom of Information Act.

From: Michael Smith []
Sent: Thursday, 22 February 2018 4:57 PM
To: FOI <>
Subject: Application under the FOI Act 1982

I seek all cables, emails, telephone records and other communications regarding President Trump and allegations that Russian interests interfered in the 2016 US presidential election, including any communications from, about, to or involving Alexander Downer.

Michael Smith

And now we know.

The Australian Government will neither confirm nor deny the existence of any document relating to Downer and his trumped up Trump/Russia pro-Hillary allegations.

And the provision of the FOI Act 1982 under which Mr I'm From The Government I'm Here To Help can choose to neither confirm nor deny?  This one.

FREEDOM OF INFORMATION ACT 1982 - SECT 25 Information as to existence of certain documents


Information as to existence of certain documents

             (1)  Nothing in this Act shall be taken to require an agency or Minister to give information as to the existence or non-existence of a document where information as to the existence or non-existence of that document, if included in a document of an agency, would cause the last-mentioned document to be:

                     (a)  an exempt document by virtue of section 33 or subsection 37(1) or 45A(1); or

                     (b)  an exempt document to the extent referred to in subsection 45A(2) or (3).

             (2)  If a request relates to a document that is, or if it existed would be, of a kind referred to in subsection (1), the agency or Minister dealing with the request may give notice in writing to the applicant that the agency or the Minister (as the case may be) neither confirms nor denies the existence, as a document of the agency or an official document of the Minister, of such a document but that, assuming the existence of such a document, it would be:

                     (a)  an exempt document by virtue of section 33 or subsection 37(1) or 45A(1); or

                     (b)  an exempt document to the extent referred to in subsection 45A(2) or (3).

             (3)  If a notice is given under subsection (2) of this section:

                     (a)  section 26 applies as if the decision to give the notice were a decision referred to in that section; and

                     (b)  the decision is taken, for the purposes of Part VI, to be a decision refusing to grant access to the document in accordance with the request referred to in subsection (2) of this section, for the reason that the document would, if it existed, be:

                              (i)  an exempt document by virtue of section 33 or subsection 37(1) or 45A(1); or

                             (ii)  an exempt document to the extent referred to in subsection 45A(2) or (3).

Got that?

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Slater and Gordon's role in protecting Ralph Blewitt and the AWU WA Branch payroll deduction election funds

New documents not made public until today show how AWU staff with legitimate concerns about Wilson/Blewitt's mismanagement and corruption in the AWU WA branch had their careers destroyed by Julia GILLARD and her Slater and Gordon partner Bernard Murphy.

On 13 February 1993 WILSON (accompanied by GILLARD) purchased the notorious Kerr Street property at auction, ostensibly on behalf of Ralph Blewitt.  

On 18 February Blewitt was installed as AWU WA State Secretary, replacing Wilson who'd taken up the Victoria State Secretary role.

On 19 February Gillard was in Perth to appear before the Full Bench of the WA Industrial Relations Commission in matter No. 1281 of 1992.  She remained in Perth to appear again on Monday 22 February on the same matter.

At that stage Ralph Blewitt had been acting state secretary for 6 months and AWU staff had had enough of his ineptitude.

I spoke with Blewitt earlier today - he agrees that he was a hopeless manager and he acknowledges the legitimacy and substance of complaints staff made against him.  He says he was secretary in name only and that he was installed into the job by Wilson on the condition that he did exactly what Wilson told him to do.

The WA branch closed its financial year on 30 June, 1993 with a disastrous result - a deficit of just on $800,000.

Its problem wasn't income - revenues of $2.7M were about the same as FY 92 when the branch posted a surplus of almost $200,000.

The $1M negative turnaround was the result of spending that was clearly out of control.

A major contributor to the loss was the inexplicable donation of $110,000 of AWU members money to former Labor Premier Carmen Lawrence's campaign, a donation that was paid a few months after the incorporation of the AWU Workplace Reform Association on the instructions of a Lawrence Government minister.

Staff costs were up $160K, legal fees up $70K, travel up $80K, printing, postage, phones, seminars, cars - costs were out of control and trending even further upwards.  

Given the way Wilson/Gillard responded with legal actions against 9 whistleblowers it's no surprise that the branch's legal bills rose from $27K in 92, to $99K in 93 - to $180K in 94.

Mick Baker was one of many staff who raised concerns about the branch management with colleagues and AWU national office holders.

We have reported on Baker's sacking and the Slater and Gordon legal actions in the WA Industrial Relations Commission that resulted here, here and here.

What's not been publicly available until now are the branch executive meeting minutes which show Slater and Gordon's role in directing the day-to-day tactics used to sack and silence whistle blowers like Baker, Len Gandini, Sue Ellery, Tony Lovett, Colin Saunders and others.

On Monday 14 1993 Len Gandini and Sue Ellery met with AWU WA President Glen Ivory to discuss problems with the branch.  

As a result of that meeting the Branch President arranged a meeting of concerned staff which took place on the evening of 16 June 1993 - 9 staff attended and spoke.  They resolved to meet with Blewitt to put their concerns face to face.  That meeting took place on 17 June.

Blewitt contacted Bruce Wilson immediately after the meeting and told Wilson that the staff wanted him (Blewitt) to resign.

Wilson spoke with Glenn Ivory and asked him to write up a verbatim account of who said what in those meetings and on Thursday, 17 June 1993 Ivory completed that statement, forwarding a copy to Wilson.

When Blewitt made it known that he wouldn't resign, the 9 staff asked Ivory for permission to put their grievances to the WA Branch Executive - and they called for an urgent meeting of that executive.

On Monday 21 June 1993 the WA Branch Executive met at an off-site location:

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The first agenda item gave Bruce Wilson speaking rights.

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Mick Baker objected to Wilson's presence, citing an AWU Rule that prohibited officials from one branch 'interfering' in the affairs of another branch.  He then tried to have the 9 staff members invited into the meeting to air their grievance.  He was wholly unsuccessful:

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Glen Ivory then gave an extensive and very detailed report on the grievances put forward by 9 AWU officials.

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The report continues for pages, noting Mick Baker's points of order and other comments - after the President's report was accepted, Baker spoke:

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He concluded with this unsuccessful motion:

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The group of 9 clearly had legitimate concerns.  Their submissions regarding the branch's finances reflect the reality in the financial accounts.  Their grievances had merit.

Prior to breaking for lunch, arrangements were made for Wilson, Blewitt and Ivory to conduct disciplinary interviews with  the 9 complainants.  Three interviews were conducted and completed during the lunch break.

When the meeting resumed, Baker made pointed representations that no disciplinary action should be permitted against any of the 9 complainants.  He made detailed submissions about the Branch's financial position - and suggested that the complaints should be escalated to the national executive.

The response was swift.  Blewitt moved that the 3 who'd been interviewed be sacked on the spot with one week's pay in lieu of notice.  His motion was carried unanimously.

Wilson then jumped in as the great mediator.  He suggested that the sackings should be deferred until all 9 had been spoken to, and that perhaps there was another way to deal with the complaints.  

A detailed motion was unanimously carried authorising Wilson alone to interview each of the 9 complainants and to work out an "action plan" in response.  The terminations were to be delayed until all 9 interviews had been conducted.

Blewitt then presented a financial report which set out the branch's perilous financial position. He was authorised to carry out a review under a unanimous motion which stated the "review must take place to ensure the continued viability of the branch".

The meeting concluded with this charming piece of member-focussed good-will:

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Download 0090.AWU WA Minutes 21.6.93


It beggars belief that the AWU's lawyers Slater and Gordon didn't so much as countenance the possibility that the allegations against Blewitt might be true.  

Slater and Gordon were fiduciaries to the members of the AWU with a responsibility to act in the membership's best interests.


Blewitt states that he wasn't interviewed by anyone about the allegations made against him.  From the moment he spoke with Wilson about the 9 staff-members who'd suggested he wasn't up to the job, the wheels were set in motion to silence the whistle-blowers.

Gillard at the very least knew about unusual and exotic financial transactions involving Blewitt/Wilson including

  • The AWU WRA and the strenuous efforts to achieve its incorporation, including the ministerial intervention
  • The $110K donation to Carmen Lawrence's campaign - Gillard was part of the Drive for Dignity bus tour
  • The at the very least "unusual" purchase by Wilson via a Gillard drafted power of attorney of the Kerr Street property, and the use of the Power of Attorney by Slater and Gordon in the provision of a $150K mortgage facility to finance the purchase

Slater and Gordon was actively involved in pursuing allegations of financial impropriety against Bob Smith (One) in Victoria - the pretext under which Wilson was installed as state secretary of that branch.  Yet when similar claims of impropriety and mismanagement were made against Blewitt - no consideration was given to any investigation of the merits of the reports, even though 9 staff members had voiced identical concerns.

Finally the $1M negative turnaround in the branch's financial statements were there in black and white - corroborating and supporting those staff members who were trying to report the mismanagement.

Slater and Gordon responded to the complaints against Blewitt by opening these files:

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Just weeks after the delegation fronted Ralph, the Executive of the branch met again.

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The first order of business was accrediting Wilson to speak at the meeting.

Then Ralph delivered this prepared report.

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Here's the letter, prepared by Slater and Gordon - as was Blewitt's prepared statement to the branch meeting.


Wilson then spoke about his ongoing "investigations" into the 9 complainants.

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After lunch the meeting recorded its confidence in the manifestly inept Blewitt.

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Ralph then confirmed what Baker, Gandini, Ellery and others had been trying to bring to the AWU's attention:

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Mick Baker was down but not out.

For 6 months he'd been trying to draw attention to the mismanagement of the branch's financial affairs - and he'd been quietly conducting his own investigations to get to the bottom of rumours about misappropriations of money.

A few days after he was dismissed from his post by Blewitt, Baker made a formal submission to the AWU WA Executive enquiring about the branch's election funds.

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That letter from Baker drew the branch's election fund(s) into the scope of Slater and Gordon's direct involvement in the branch's affairs.

Slater and Gordon already had a file open on payroll deductions

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Once Baker's letter about payroll deduction election funds had been received, Gillard was duty bound to enquire of Wilson as to the conduct of what she says she knew to be the Incorporated Association established as the holder of those funds deducted from the salaries of the team of WA branch officials with whom Bruce Wilson would stand for election.

With Baker's complaint, Gillard's claim that she made no further enquiries about the operation or existence of the AWU WRA once it was incorporated is looking very, very shaky.

The minutes of the 21 July meeting are here.

Download 0092.AWU WA Minutes 19.7.93

The Executive (which met only once in the entire 1994 year) would meet 3 more times over the next few weeks with Slater and Gordon managing each step.

I'll bring you the details of those meetings in our next post.

Every touch leaves its trace.

Me today

I spent just on one hour this morning in an on-the-record discussion with an investigative agency which has taken an interest in some of our work.

I have been asked to keep the details of the agency and the matters discussed confidential - and I've agreed to do that.

I've also been asked to provide two fairly lengthy and quite detailed statements/affidavits.  These are quite fiddly and time-consuming things to put together and I expect to be offline doing that for the next few hours.

I'm sorry I can't say more - the purpose of this note is to let you know I'm here and taking what I hope will be quite significant steps in the pursuit of justice.

One of our legal eagles and regular commenters (who has me as a $1 client in perpetuity!) is aware of the nature of the contact I've had today along with the many false dawns we've had in thinking certain offenders might be called to account.  He just dropped me a note which said, "Hope for the best and deal with the reality!!"

Here's to both!

Chairman Mal and Jacqui

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Hi Turnbull Teamster,

Jacqui is a fourth generation steelworker and her family originally owned the land where the Port Kembla steelworks now operate.

With a second baby on the way, Jacqui is hoping it will soon become five generations of steelworkers! 

The confirmation from President Trump that Australia will be exempt from US steel and aluminium tariffs is good news for Jacqui, her family, and her colleagues.  
Watch more from my visit to BlueScope this morning with Treasurer Scott Morrison and local member Ann Sudmalis in the short clip below:  

All the best,

Malcolm Turnbull

PS. Last Friday Lucy and I hosted some of the athletes from the Special Olympics at Kirribilli House. With big smiles and bigger hearts, they made my week. More here
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It's time we started talking about the corruption in Victoria's criminal justice system

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In May 2013 Victoria Police executed a search warrant on the law firm Slater and Gordon - the warrant is here.

Slater and Gordon's client Bruce Wilson claimed legal professional privilege over some of the files  - this Affidavit from DET SGT Ross Mitchell explains.

Police opposed Wilson's claim on the grounds the documents and communications between Wilson/Gillard and/or Bernard Murphy were made in the furtherance of fraud or a criminal offence. Victoria's Chief Magistrate agreed with the police.  He made a written finding that all of Slater and Gordon's communications with Wilson were made in the furtherance of fraud - here.

In his affidavit, DET SGT Ross Mitchell gave sworn evidence that he believed Bruce Wilson, Ralph Blewitt and others had committed serious indictable offences in Victoria -  including

  • obtaining property by deception,
  • secret commission offences,
  • making and using false documents and
  • conspiracy to cheat and defraud.

Now, almost 5 years on and despite much more evidence coming to light, no one has been charged -  and no one looks like being charged in Victoria.


It's only now that the scale of the corruption in this matter is becoming clear.

I say corruption because of a mountain of evidence of the commission of serious indictable offences in Victoria - crimes which are being ignored and concealed by authorities.

Ralph Blewitt has been charged in WA with defrauding Thiess in WA.  As part of the criminal justice process in WA, Ralph is entitled to receive copies of all the evidence authorities hold in the matter.  

That means he has much of the evidence Victoria Police gathered.  I've seen that evidence and there is no doubt in my mind that serious offences were committed in Victoria by known offenders.

At the heart of the Victorian offences is the law firm Slater and Gordon.

Here are a few extracts from the hand-written notes of former Slater and Gordon managing partner and now Federal Court Judge Bernard Murphy taken from the file he opened after Wilson's Victorian misappropriations were discovered.

(Wilson) instructed us to set it up (Workplace Reform Association).


he had then received monies into it improperly.

he spent the monies improperly

he involved us in criminal wrongdoing, re the house (Kerr Street Fitzroy purchase)

Met with John Cain Jr - JC indicated money from employers was arguably secret commissions

Cain stated if Wilson didn't resign he would be charged internally, there wld also be press & matter likely to find its way to police

9 August 95 - met with Wilson in conference with Hinkley QC.  Re Workplace Reform Association account in WA, Wilson said that the monies from the account had been misspent on a no. of things he did not want to tell us about. Indicated that if that a/c ever investigated he wld go to jail & so would other officials.

Agreed with Hinkley that I wld contact John Cain from MB on behalf of Wilson to negotiate a redundancy package + resignation for Wilson in the hope that if he left there wld be no further investigation.

Wilson told me then that S&G had set up the W.R. Association on his instructions as an election fund and also said that WR Assoc monies misspent by he and Blewitt on purchase of 1/85 Kerr St. 

WA $300,000 from Thiess went into an incorporated association

The $20,160 cheque from Thiess was made out to this association.

However, it could lead back into these other drama’s.

There would be a problem re “secret commissions” with this. Money spent on all sorts of things

Murphy was involved in a scheme to conceal Wilson's offences from police and from the AWU.  Murphy undertook to negotiate a redundancy and resignation package for Wilson "in the hope that there would be no further investigations" into the matters that "involved us in criminal wrongdoing".

Murphy and Cain presided over the return of money each agreed was "arguably secret commission payments" to the firms that made the payments - in an attempt to conceal Wilson's corrupt behaviour.  At law secret commission payments are the property of the principle for whom the corrupt agent works - ie the AWU.  Taking that money from an AWU related account and dealing with it as Cain et al did is theft.

But there is much, much more.

All of the AWU WRA money that went into the Slater and Gordon Trust Account was fraudulently accounted for  - by changing the name of the provider of the funds from the AWU WRA Inc to Ralph Blewitt.  More seriously, the funds were laundered through the firm's trust account and through its collateral mortgage provider into real estate at Kerr Street - and where did the proceeds of the sale go?

Does anyone believe the Kerr Street purchase was a genuine commercial transaction?

That transaction involved serious criminal offences wholly committed in Victoria.  But the crooks appear to be getting away with it.

Over the next few days I'll be posting examples of evidence that supports the case for criminal charges in Victoria.

But I need your help.

The Left is very good at getting angry and getting even.

Conservatives are not.

Take the example of Cardinal George Pell and his appearances in court in Victoria recently - and compare and contrast his treatment with GILLARD's.

Now is the time  for action and, yes - anger.

Please write to or call politicians, journalists, the IBAC, friends, Facebook, radio stations, clubs and anyone else you can think of.

Turnbull said the last double-dissollution election was about trade union corruption.

So how can we tolerate Victoria's conscious encouragement of just that - corruption.?


In September 2016 Victoria Police closed its AWU Scandal investigation and handed its files to Western Australia's Director of Public Prosecutions.

No charges have been laid in Victoria and none are planned.  Police haven't even interviewcd the main offender, Bruce Wilson.

Then i March 2017 Victoria Police disbanded its trade-union investigative squad, part of Operation Heracles which arose from the Trade Union Royal Commission.  That decision beggars belief, particularly as the unit was fully funded by the Federal Government with $21M in addition to Victoria Police's state budget.

Attorney-General George Brandis, Employment Minister Michaelia Cash and Justice Minister Michael Keenan wrote to Victoria's premier to express "grave concerns" about the "incomprehensible" decision.

In April last year the Herald Sun carried this report

VICTORIA Police is under pressure from the federal government to reverse its decision to quit a joint operation that was investigating union thuggery and intimidation. 

Attorney-General George Brandis, Employment Minister Michaelia Cash and Justice Minister Michael Keenan have written to Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews to say it is “incomprehensible” that he has not stepped in to ensure the state’s police remain a part of Operation Heracles.

The Herald Sun revealed last month that Victoria Police had informed the Australian Federal Police of its intentions to end its role in the operation, which was spawned out of the royal commission into trade union corruption.

A strongly worded letter from the trio, seen by the Herald Sun, raised “grave concerns” about the prospects for the enforcement of criminal laws in Victoria in relation to corruption and misconduct by unions.

The task force, funded by the Commonwealth, had recently been provided with $21 million to continue its investigations over four years.

“It in incomprehensible that your government has not stand steps to ensure your police force remains within the police task force and continues to investigate and pursue the kind of serious criminality touched on by the Royal Commission,” the letter says.

There were 30 criminal referrals to Victoria Police and the Victorian Department of Public Prosecutions made by the Royal Commission with a further three made to the Commonwealth DPP in relation to Victorian conduct.

Nearly 90 per cent of the 30 Victorian referrals related to the Australian Workers’ Union and its dealings with employers.

Vic Pol leaves union corruption taskforce

Senator Cash said any government’s first priority was “enforcement of the law”.

“It appears that the Victorian Labor Government is more concerned with protecting its union power base than protecting its people,” she said.

The Gillard perjury prosecution is pending.

It's time to make some noise about The AWU Scandal again.

Read these documents and pass them on!

I'll have more soon.



Former Trade Union Royal Commission CEO and Labor Party royalty Jane Fitzgerald is on QandA tonight

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Jane Fitzgerald - PanellistJane Fitzgerald

Jane Fitzgerald is Executive Director of the New South Wales Division of the Property Council of Australia, leading the advocacy agenda at a time of enormous investment and change in the sector. 

Prior to her appointment, Jane was a senior executive with the Commonwealth Attorney-General’s Department and, amongst other roles, was the Chief Executive Officer of the Royal Commission into Trade Union Governance and Corruption. 

Previously, Jane was the Deputy Director-General of the NSW Ministry for Police and chief of staff to two ministers in the NSW Government. Jane has a law degree and an arts degree majoring in politics from the University of NSW. She is also a moderator with the Cranlana Programme, an independent organisation with a broad objective to cultivate wisdom in leadership.


George Brandis made a brilliant choice when he put Jane in the role of CEO for the Trade Union Royal Commission.

Brilliant for the Labor Party that is.

Here's a 2006 Crikey article setting out Ms Fitzgerald's credentials and pedigree.

"Jane Fitzgerald, former Watkins Chief of Staff (now on over 200K a year in a Police Ministry job), is cousin to Paul McLeay (Leo’s son and the member for Heathcote) whose partner Cassandra Wilkinson worked for Costa and Jane’s mother is Paul’s electorate officer. Watkins’s daughter’s boyfriend Polo is working for Sandra Nori and Watkins’s Chief of Staff, Emma Murphy, is the niece of a former Wran Minister. The list goes on and on. As you know, very few people get political jobs out of the newspaper." 

("Watkins" is John Watkins, former Labor Deputy Premier of NSW)

There were lots of coincidences at the TURC - like this one where the CFMEU deleted email server data just the day before a Notice to Produce the server data in electronic form was issued by the TURC.


CFMEU manually deleted blocks of email-server data

12 Dec 2013 - "The Australian'  publishes article confirming Union Royal Commission weeks away

10 Feb 2014 -  PM Abbott formal announcement, names CFMEU, include Terms of Reference

18 Feb 2014 -  Records Retention Alert to Government agencies and "other persons"

12 Mar 2014 -  Government announces Letters Patent signed by GG - TURC RC powers operational

21 Mar 2014 - Archives Act/RC Act orders Govt Agencies & others - retain records, no destruction

26 Mar 2014 - TURC publishes Practice Direction No 1  orders electronic data be produced for NTPs

1   Apr 2014 - 1st Notice to Produce served on CFMEU National Office, applies to al branches

30May 2014 - further 3 NTPs served on CFMEU - numbers 98,103 and 104 - return date 6 Jun

5   Jun 2014 - Philip Pasfield, Slater and Gordon, solicitors for CFMEU writes seeking ext. of time

6   Jun 2014 - CFMEU partial compliance  NTP 98 and 104 - TURC extends time to 16 June 2014

16  Jun 2014  - CFMEU delivers paper copies of documents, no electronic data, no electronic copies

23  Jun 2014 -  CFMEU "discovers" a 2 year old problem with email server after an "incident"

24  Jun 2014 -   6.33PM This email sent to staff on the "broken"  NSW CFMEU email system

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24 June 2014, 6.35 PM -CFMEU President and lawyer Rita Mallia created this masterpiece for the "l tried, I really tried to find another way" record

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25 Jun 2014 - TURC  detailed letter to CFMEU reiterating need for electronic files - files the CFMEU now says were deleted just the night before - extends time for production to 1 July, 2014

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30 Jun 2014 -  7 days after the alleged "incident" and manual deletion/destruction of emails electronic files, Slater/Gordon lawyer writes 17 point letter to TURC on the day prior to extended due date for production under the NTP.



Jason Morrison on Australia's first woman in a solo radio show - and she wasn't on the ABC


 (I originally published a photo of Binny Lum with this story in error, my apologies and thanks to Andrew from for picking the error up and letting us know.  If anyone has a photo of "Andrea" or I'd be much obliged.  Michael)


For all of the ABC’s self-congratulatory carry-on, it was actually commercial broadcasting in Australia that put a woman on the air on her own first.

Her name on the air was ‘Andrea’ - a journalist, a gossip columnist, and an actress who worked in Hollywood, before returning to Sydney and turning to radio.

She was a straight talking, fearless, entertaining host who had the sound of someone with all the graces of Eastern Suburbs high society but her shtick was to constantly take the piss out of it.

‘Andrea’ at first was a guest in the 1950s on 2GB, but repeatedly overpowered her male hosts and, by popular demand, she was given “a conversation” show on her own on 2GB and then later 2UE.

She was a big star who constantly had blow-ups with management – and was known to quit so many times that it wasn’t taken seriously until she didn’t turn up to work .. or turned up on another station.

She finally left 2GB in the mid 60s after yet another falling out with management who accused her of being drunk on the air. She wasn’t – but just lost her cool and told a woman who called in to complain that she was “the most boring person in Sydney” – after reading out her name and address!

It was a scandal but The Telegraph took her side and ran a petition to get her back, but she switched to the ABC.

Ironically, it was the ABC that ended her broadcasting career when it was decided she was “too rough for modern times”, according to the Herald. She was replaced with a music show.

Andrea’s real name was Dorothy Jenner. She was an amazing woman who starred in several films, and later on TV. She was a War Correspondent in WW2, reporting from Asia. She was captured by the Japanese in Hong Kong and spent several years in a prisoner of war camp.

John Pearce told me once that he believed Andrea saved 2GB from certain commercial death by bringing the airwaves alive at a time TV was king.

She lived in Kings Cross through most of her ‘famous years’ and died in 1985.

I never hear Andrea referred to as the ‘trail blazer’ that she was – which is sad in many ways because she undoubtedly was someone who shaped the broadcasting that we have today.


Thank you Jason.  

Isn't it lovely to see a bloke write and research that story (that's Jason) for no other reason than that it's important and should be told.

Thanks mate for allowing us to re-publish your work here.