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June 2015

Joe Hockey wins $200,000 payout from Fairfax for defamation - "editor for sale, free to good home"

$200,000 is a pretty decent whack for a defamation payout.   It would buy the company the services of a reasonably competent news editor for a while.


Here's the ABC

Treasurer Joe Hockey wins defamation case against Fairfax

Updated 6 minutes ago

Treasurer Joe Hockey has won a defamation case against Fairfax Media.

The Federal Court has been examining whether Mr Hockey's reputation was damaged by a series of reports last year from Fairfax, including an article headlined "Treasurer for sale".

Justice Richard White found that a poster headline and tweets reading "Treasurer for sale" were defamatory.

Mr Hockey was awarded $200,000 in damages.

 It may be a good time to be in the market for a news editor.

CFMEU George Alex organised crime public hearing - Doug Westerway in the witness box

Mr Westerway has been sworn and is in the witness box.

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 Mr Westerway was quizzed about text messages between himself and George Alex.

St. George said:

14:06 Wow only 5 mins in and Doug Westerway is dropping Alex in it big gime. Yes 2,500 was union money. No only Alex used his phone. I hope he is well protected.

Ms McNaughton's examination was relatively brief - she concluded with "did you ever see any documents stored in unusual places at George Alex's house?'

"What do you mean?"

Ms McNaughton, "In the toilet, or in a drawer in the toilet?"


At 2.20 Ms McNaughton completed her examination.

Mr Game (for Mr Parker) is cross-examing Mr Westerway.

He referred to bank statements and asked "did Mr Antoun ask you to make entries that refer to payments to the CFMEU?"   Mr Westerway, "Joe and George".

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At 3PM Mr Game completed his cross examination.   Mr Agius for the CFMEU is cross examining Mr Westerway.

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There was limited cross examination by Counsel for other parties.

Mr Hadji rose to his feet very unwisely

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Mr Hadji didn't apologise for being late - he asked for the Arrest Warrants issued for "the two Alex ladies" to be formally withdrawn - "We don't want them just floating around out there", he stated that he believed that police had already visited the home of at least on of the "ladies".

The Commissioner, "What's the point of that?"

Mr Hadji withdrew.

After some legal and timetabling discussions the Commission adjourned at 3.25PM


Commonwealth Flag Network celebrates Aboriginal achievement - for 4th time this year

Previously this year the Commonwealth Flag Network has celebrated Aboriginal achievement by flying the Aboriginal Flag on:

13 February - Anniversary of Kevin Rudd's Apology to the Stolen Generation

26 May - National Sorry Day

27 May to 3 June - National Reconciliation Week

It's time to get the flags dry-cleaned again, here's the latest Aboriginal week

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To:  All Flag Marshals: Action Australia-wide and action at Australian overseas posts

NAIDOC Week - 5 to 12 July 2015

National Aboriginal and Islanders’ Day Observance Committee (NAIDOC) Week is held every year during the first full week in July. It is a time to celebrate Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander history, culture and achievements and is an opportunity to recognise the contributions that Indigenous Australians make to our country and our society.  This year, the theme for NAIDOC Week, which will be celebrated from 5 to 12 July inclusive, is ‘We all Stand on Sacred Ground: Learn, Respect and Celebrate.’  Further information is at

Flying the Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Flags throughout NAIDOC Week confirms our national respect for Indigenous Australians.  From Sunday 5 July to Sunday 12 July 2015 the Australian Aboriginal Flag and the Torres Strait Islander Flag should be flown on additional flagpoles, where available, next to or near the Australian National Flag on Australian Government buildings and establishments.  Other organisations are encouraged to follow this protocol.

If there is only one flagpole available at a flag station the Australian Aboriginal Flag or the Torres Strait Islander Flag should not replace the Australian National Flag.  If two flagpoles are available, it is at the discretion of the authority concerned to determine which of the two flags is flown with the Australian National Flag.  The Australian Aboriginal Flag and the Torres Strait Islander Flag have equal status and may be flown in any order after the Australian National Flag.

Should it be the practice to fly other flags at the flag station, please refer to the Order of Precedence for flying the Australian National Flag along with other flags, which can be found in the ‘Australian Flags’ booklet (

The financial and staffing implications arising from weekend flag marshal duties are the responsibility of each organisation.

Your assistance is appreciated.

Commonwealth Flag Officer

30 June 2015

CFMEU George Alex organised crime public hearing continues today at TURC

Athina Alex is in the witness box.

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Athina Alex is George Alex's sister.  

She was asked if she'd ever been a director of a proprietary limited company in Australia - she said yes.

Asked to list them, Ms Alex said she couldn't, she asked for a print out from ASIC.   Ms McNaughton pressed her question asking Ms Alex to name the companies she'd been a director of in her own words.

Ms Alex had to be prompted, she agreed that Joe Antoun had asked her to be a director of one of he Active companies.  She said her brother George had asked her to be a director of a company.

Ms Alex states that she didn't ask any questions of either Joe or George as to what her responsibilities would be - she didn't ask any questions at all.

She'd signed cheques "when Joe asked me to sign a cheque I would".   She was shown a cheque made out to the CFMEU for $5,000 - the CFMEU was then crossed out and replaced with the word cash.

Mr Alex recalls cashing cheques - she can't recall whether she cashed the CFMEU cheque in question.

Ms Alex states that she is and was a full time carer for her son who suffers a significant illness.   She was therefore unable to do any work in the companies in which she was a director - occasionally she'd attend the office.

On one occasion Ms Alex provided a director's guarantee or similar to a Joe Antoun company that was put into voluntary administration - she took out a personal loan of $140,000 to satisfy the ATO.

Ms Alex was asked if she was a director of Silver Pinball Pty Ltd.   Ms Alex was shown the transcript of an intercepted telephone call between herself and George Alex regarding what appears to be a creditor to the Silver Pinball company, Mr Alex said, "Do you think Westfield is going to pay tonight?"

Ms Alex referred to a "Darren" in the phone call - she agrees that it was either Darren Greenfield or Darren Glover.   She states that she had met Darren Greenfield but she didn't know his surname until this week.

Ms Alex is very sure that she was never involved in paying any money to Darren Greenfield.

Ms Alex states that she would do "whatever Joe Antoun asked me to do".

Ms Alex is having a little bit of difficulty in sticking to her lines here - there's a lot to remember.

Ms Alex believes that George Alex became a director of several companies while he was a bankrupt.

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George was a consultant to Joe - he wasn't a manger, didn't get involved with running the company.   But he asked her what to do and she did it.

Ms Alex is certain that she never put money in a drawer in the toilet for Darren Greenfield.

Ms McNaughton, "Were you a simple straw director that was being used by Mr Antoun."

At  11.25 Ms McNaughton concluded her examination.   There was no cross examination.   Ms Alex has been excused.

There is one further witness who will be heard later today - in the interim Nectaria Alex has been recalled.

Ms Alex was re-sworn.

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Ms Alex agreed that she sent a text to George saying, "your girlfriend can wait, sort your shit out before you see your slut".

Ms Alex also sent a text to George saying, "Grow the fuck up".

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Ms Alex asked if these "personal" texts could be given to her in writing rather than being read out, "can we keep the personal stuff out of it".

She agrees that she sent a text saying, "I've got Darren waiting".

Ms McNaughton is trying to establish that the user of the phone communicating with Ms Alex is George Alex.  Ms Alex says, "no".

Ms Alex accepts that she sent a text saying, "Is Wizz picking anything up?" - she further states that "I don't know who Wizz is".

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The Commissioner agree that a confidentiality order should be made in respect of the text messages the Commission has heard about this morning (rather read this morning).  The Commissioner will make the order over those messages that have not been read out.

Ms McNaughton, "I suggest to you that when you got a text from the phone that you've been calling the 'office phone' you knew that was from  George Alex?'

Ms Alex, "not 100%, no."

Ms Alex states that she saw Brian Parker at her house, "once, maybe twice.   It was a general hello, would you like a coffee".

Ms Alex was asked to tell the Commission the names of those persons who would regularly attend at the house.   She agrees that she knew Kaled Sharrouf, she states that she saw him in the gym, she says, "Kaled was always embarrassed, I would offer him a water and he would be embarrassed because he was sweating, they were always saturated after working out".

Ms Mcnaughton, "When Mr Parker was there, what was your understanding of why he was there".

Ms Alex, "I just saw him, he was talking to George and Joe, I don't time people, I don't sit there and wait and look at what everyone's doing, they were out the back, there's a back patio and a backyard they were out the back, I can't be specific which part, that's a small detail among my whole life, they were on the stairs coming in to the patio - the verandah, sorry:.

Ms Alex states that there was a unit George had that he would use for the purpose of having a separate premises that the children would not visit, that was so the children's study was uninterrupted.

Ms Alex, "I don't know what George did once he left the home:.

Ms McNaughton, "Do he left the home regularly did he?"

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I have a lengthy flight ahead - due to land just before TURC sitting - bear with me if I get caught up!

I have scheduled some unavoidable travel overnight - my plan is to be online in time for the TURC's CFMEU hearings Tuesday morning.


Bear with me if I'm a little late in the morning - we'll get underway as soon as we can.

It's School holidays in NSW this week - and  Thursday evening the First Night of Mary Poppins at the Wagga Wagga Civic Theatre.   A young Miss Smith stars as Jane in her first professional role!  There'll be a gathering of the clan on the night and some R and R with the children thereafter.

PS - frequent visitors to this site will remember the ancient club I stay at when in the region.   It has a wonderful old stair case whose elevated bannister Mr 8 years old loves to ride at great risk to his old man's blood pressure.   I thought you might enjoy this exchange between the brains behind the children and me.

Email from me: Worth a chat with Hughie about this

Email in reply: I ahowed him this sad article and spoke about the need to stay safe ... ten minutes later i found him outside with a ladder trying to climb onto the roof.....


Say a prayer to St Christopher will you?

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Karen Nettleton's reaction to pictures of her grandson holding a severed head - her pain says it all about us and Islamism


Big Bad Property Developer is on fire today - you go girl!

BBPD said:

What the heck does a Western born & raised woman who converted to Islam think when their dumb Muslim inbred husband rings from Syria and says, hey Lovey bring the kids over!! it will be a great family holiday - I'll meet you in Raqqa (you know they have Islam Dreamworld here) Trying to guess the conversation: 1. I'll share you with 20 other love slaves, but you'll always be my fave 2. You'll be locked up in a unit 23 hours a day trying to homeschool the kids, but you're the best teacher the kids could ever have 3. I'll give our 13 year old first born daughter to my best mate to do with as he wills, but she'll make us proud 4. You'll get trapped in this hell hole with no chance of escape, but I'll be so proud that you made yourself a martyr, I'll think of you and the kids when I'm in my love nest with my Yazidi slaves. allahu akbar I say stupid, dumbass woman! You are derelict in your mothering duties. You are an embarrassment to my gender. I am a feminist, therefore I reject Islam




A brilliant comment from the Big Bad Property Developer - particularly about the dangers posed by Illegal Centrelink Seeker children who've grown up with Islamism.

BBPD said:

I pray for their their souls. God loves all equally, even those who commit evil crimes or subject their children to unspeakable acts. As for bringing them back I am completely surprised at my leftie friends all saying they don't want them back in Australia. In Politics my leftie friends follow like sheep (one might question my choice of friends, but they are Chartered Accountants, Doctors, Property Developers - people who should be righties). I thank Bill Shorten, he was a leader saying he wouldn't want his children to be at school with them - I sincerely thank him for his lead. All the sheep followed him dutifully. We have bipartisanship on returning children of jihadists. No good comes from this, only bad. The elephant in the room IMHO are the boatloads (and boatloads) of children who have also experiences such atrocities. We are scared of the Sharrouf children, but what about the thousands of kids now in our society who have witnessed war crimes? Who are our kids sitting next to in class?

NB - I assumed Ms Nettleton's daughter and grandchildren were taken from Australia without her knowledge.    Many comments suggest Ms Nettleton played an important part  in helping them leave for the Middle East - I'd be obliged if someone could point me to a report of what she did.   If Ms Nettleton knowingly helped the Islamist Sharrouf  get the children into ISIS territory she should be charged. 


Last September we heard Karen Nettleton's evidence to the Trade Union Royal Commission.

Ms Nettleton has been working in the Elite business since July 2013 as an accounts clerk.

Her daughter's husband (Khaled Sharrouf) arranged an interview with George Alex for the Elite Scaffolding job.

Ms Nettleton enters details in MYOB, she raises invoices and attends to the banking.

Ms Nettleton states that her son in law works for George Alex "collecting money or as a bodyguard or something like that."

I can't imagine her horror on being told Sharrouf had taken her daughter and grandchildren to the Islamic  "caliphate" in the Middle East.   Then this happened.

The photo that will shock the world: jihadist Khaled Sharrouf’s son, 7, holds severed head

  • AUGUST 11, 2014 12:00AM

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This interview with Karen Nettleton shows you how wide the gap is between Australian civilisation and the barbarism of the Islamists.   Mrs Nettleton broke my heart as I watched her in pain- I can't imagine my little boy imagining something like this, let alone having to deal with it in real life.   But it is real and it is happening, regularly.    Thanks to Islamism.

Karen Nettleton's honest and uncomplicated reaction shows how much better we are than the Islamists who revel in horror.  Please say a little prayer for her as she deals with what Islamism has done to her family.


Slater and Gordon stock at $3.64 after partial admissions about regulatory investigations - down from high of $8.07

Slater and Gordon is the ASX's biggest loser today - thanks to TazSpinZone for his help with this story.

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SGH's highpoint during the last 12 months was $8.07 - that's a long way down to $3.67 - now $3.64 as I've been writing.

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The market started buzzing about SGH last Wednesday after that morning's AFR published this story:

The investor presentation is filed at the ASX here

It contains no reference to any inquiry or investigation.  Separately, Slater and Gordon issued this statement to the exchange:

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Tricky guys - "Pitcher Partners confirms it has not received any targeted inquiry from ASIC....."

Later on the same day Slater and Gordon had second thoughts about its continuous disclosure:

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Now we hear more of the story - this story was published by The Australian after the ASX opened this morning.

Slater & Gordon admits UK reporting errors

  • JUNE 29, 2015 10:43AM 

Shares in Australian-listed law firm Slater and Gordon have plummeted after the group admitted to misreporting revenues from its UK business for more than three years, although it says the errors have no impact on net cash results for the division.

Slater and Gordon shares dropped 26 per cent to $3.73 at the 10.15am (AEST) market open -- the stock’s biggest fall on record.

The company (SGH) said today it had identified errors in the reporting of its cash flows from its UK operations going back to the 2012 financial year, as part of a detailed analysis of its financial information to be provided to the Australian Securities and Investments Commission.

The corporate watchdog had examined Slater and Gordon’s auditor Pitcher Partners as part of ASIC’s routine review of publicly listed company audits.

Salter and Gordon said Pitcher Partners on Friday told it that ASIC was planning to “raise some queries” with the firm.

In April, Slater and Gordon acquired London firm Quindell’s Professional Services Division for $1.3 billion with the assistance of EY auditors, which the firm reiterated following reports the corporate watchdog had questioned whether Pitcher Partners had the resources to conduct an “extensive and complex” international audit.

Slater and Gordon said the contentions in the report were “incorrect and misleading”.

On Thursday, the firm’s shares suffered their biggest plunge on record after the UK’s Financial Conduct Authority started an investigation into the accounts of Quindell.

Quindell said its accounting policies were “largely acceptable but were at the aggressive end of acceptable practice” in a release to the London stock exchange.

Slater and Gordon said in a statement today that there were two errors in the method used to report receipts from customers and payments to suppliers and employees by the UK business, reporting receipts on a gross, rather than net, basis.

Slater and Gordon identified a consolidation error in the historical cashflows from its UK operations, but said the mistakes have no impact on net cash results for the division.


If I was an investor and attended last Wednesday's investor briefing, I'd be asking some very pointed questions about what Slater and Gordon knew and when it knew it.   If a journalist at the AFR found out about the investigations - one would think the information might have been discoverable by Slater and Gordon management.   if it was aware and said nothing it might have very serious problems indeed.

But then Slater and Gordon has form for not telling the whole truth - we await the Legal Services Board's report into Trust Account irregularities arising from Bruce Wilson and team and their money laundering through the firm in 1993.


Fair Work Commission finds Kimberley Kitching performed ROE tests for Diana Asmar and others and gave false evidence

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Thanks tio Roger for the tip about the Commission's Judgement, delivered on Friday in Melbourne.

Fair Work Act 2009 
s.512 - Application for a right of entry permit

Health Services Union-Victoria No. 1 Branch
(RE2013/426 and others)



Application by Health Services Union - Victoria No. 1 Branch for Entry Permits – whether right of entry tests were performed by persons other than the officials – if tests were performed by others, who were they performed by – if tests were performed by others, who authorised or had knowledge of the practice – who undertook the test declared to be conducted by Ms Asmar – who undertook the test declared to be conducted by Mr Katsis – who accessed Mr Mitchell's ACTU account – whether inaccurate declarations were made – whether permits should be revoked - Fair Work Act 2009 ss.480, 507, 512, 513, 582, 603, 625.

Here are some of the relevant findings of fact:

[122] Ms Asmar made strong denials of any knowledge, advice, direction or involvement in the practice of ACTU tests being performed on behalf of the relevant applicants. She appeared eager to assert her innocence in very strong terms. She was not subject to cross-examination. Despite asking for phone records of relevant days very early in the proceedings Ms Asmar, through her counsel, asserted very late in the proceedings that they could not be obtained because she had a pre-paid phone plan at the time. It was not explained why this was not disclosed much earlier. Having regard to her evidence and her demeanour giving evidence I am unsure that her evidence can be regarded as reliable.

[123] A similar position arises with respect to Ms Kitching, the former General Manager of the Branch. Her denials were short and firm. They extended to strong denials of conversations and knowledge that appeared clearly established by other witnesses. She was not subject to cross-examination. Her evidence went into great detail about her movements on 15 February 2013. I found the detail of her memory of the day well after the event and the firmness of her statements somewhat implausible. Despite obvious gaps in her account of her activities she maintained that her evidence should establish that her involvement in the performance of tests was impossible. I am not sure that her evidence can be regarded as reliable.


. Six tests were completed on 15 February 2013 from the Branch office. Some or all of them were completed by persons other than the relevant officials in whose names the tests were performed. Mr Lee was overseas at the time. Ms Asmar was out of the office for much of the day. There appears to be no person who may have performed the tests other than Ms Kitching. On the totality of the evidence I find that Ms Kitching performed these tests. Ms Kitching's denials of knowledge and involvement cannot be accepted.


4. I have found that Ms Kitching and Ms Lee performed ACTU tests for others despite the denials of Ms Kitching. Ms Kitching was the most senior employee of the Branch at the time and had a close working relationship with Ms Asmar. There is a body of evidence of Ms Asmar stating that Ms Kitching would be doing the tests on behalf of officials. Both Ms Asmar and Ms Kitching strongly deny such statements. I prefer the accounts of those who gave evidence of the statements. It is inherently unlikely that Ms Kitching would do the tests without the knowledge and authorisation of Ms Asmar. I do not accept their denials as being truthful or reliable. I find on the evidence that the performance of ACTU tests by Ms Kitching and Ms Lee was with the knowledge and authorisation of Ms Asmar.


5. Only Ms Asmar and Ms Kitching know whether they performed Ms Asmar's test. They both state that Ms Asmar did the test and that Ms Kitching did not. However there is evidence that both Ms Asmar and Ms Kitching told others to the contrary at the time. In Ms Asmar's case it appears to have been in the context of encouraging others to facilitate a similar practice with respect to their own tests, which eventuated with respect to a number of officials. In Ms Kitching's case the statements appear to be in the context of office banter, a sense of achievement and the context of Ms Asmar's busy work schedule. 


6. I accept the evidence that both Ms Asmar and Ms Kitching made comments to others near the time of the test inconsistent with their evidence before me and the Royal Commission. In particular I rely on the evidence of Ms Porter and Mr Leszczynski. In my view it is highly unlikely that the comments would have been made at or around the time of the tests if they were not true. There was no need for Ms Asmar to state that Ms Kitching had performed her test in order to direct Ms Kitching to perform it for others. There was no need for Ms Kitching to boast about the result of performing Ms Asmar's test, or to state that she did it because Ms Asmar was too busy, if Ms Kitching had not in fact done the test. Ms Kitching's and Ms Asmar's evidence has been found to be unreliable and untruthful in other respects. On all of the evidence I find that it is likely that Ms Kitching performed the test on 25 January 2013 on behalf of Ms Asmar.


7. I have found that Ms Kitching performed the ACTU tests for a number of officials on 15 February 2013. It is inherently unlikely that the ACTU records regarding the time taken to complete the test are incorrect. It is inherently unlikely that Mr Katsis, very inexperienced at the time, accessed the training for three minutes and completed the test in 2 minutes. It is inherently unlikely that Mr Katsis did this within 15 minutes of speaking on his mobile phone in Malvern. On the other hand it is conceivable and indeed likely that Ms Kitching could have done the test in that time frame. On all of the evidence I find that Ms Kitching performed Mr Katsis' test.


8. On all of the evidence and in the light of my findings I find that Ms Kitching accessed Mr Mitchell's account on 15 February 2013.


[269] Making false declarations and failing to complete training that is a requirement for a right of entry permit are serious matters that strike at the heart of the integrity of the right of entry permit system. On the basis of these findings I answer the questions posed in this inquiry as follows:


As to Ms. Diana Asmar (RE 2013/426)


Q1. Whether in order to obtain a ROE permit, Ms. Asmar made an inaccurate declaration for a ROE permit dated 29 January 2013 that she had received appropriate training about the rights and responsibilities of a permit holder, namely the ACTU Federal Right of Entry online training course completed on 25 January 2013. 


A1. Yes.


Q2. Whether the right of entry permit issued to Ms. Asmar should be revoked. 


A2. Yes.




Kathy Jackson declares bankruptcy ahead of HSU's Federal Court civil suit - reports she failed to appear at court today

UPDATE 7.45PM - what's the point of suing a bankrupt for damages?

Here's StevenJ with his expert view

Steve J said

"if a bankrupt loses what happens then??"

Any judgement against her will result from obligations incurred before her Bankruptcy.
A judgement against her at a later time is transformed immediately into a right to lodge a proof of debt against her Bankrupt estate.

Actually she has a contingent liability as at the date of bankruptcy which can be valued and accepted as a debt by her trustee. This can then be amended when actual judgement is given. 

She would have to fund any defence from sources other than existing assets. Effectively as she has no income it would require someone to pay for her.

A creditor can not prove for interest which becomes payable after the date of bankruptcy.
It is not the date the petition is lodged that is the date on which the bankruptcy commences; it is deemed to commence on the earliest act of bankruptcy in the preceding six months.

Property acquired while still a bankrupt can with certain exceptions be used to satisfy the creditors of her estate.  So if she( not say her de facto) inherited a large estate it could be used by her trustee to pay the creditors.

Anyway the end result is that if she only has $250,000 in assets and has no windfalls while bankrupt the HSU can only share pro rata with other creditors in that.
They would want to make sure they minimised any future legal expenses as it will effectively be the union that is paying for it. 


Former HSU national secretary Kathy Jackson declares bankruptcy.

— The Australian (@australian) June 29, 2015

This note is from a reader who's been sitting in the courtroom as the HSU's action against Kathy Jackson has been heard:

Hi Michael,  I'm coming recently sitting in Courtroom 18C of the Federal Court in Sydney in the HSU v Kathy Jackson hearing. It has transpired that KJ has bankrupted herself over the weekend and both she and Lawler have failed to appear this morning. The hearing is proceeding amongst some confusion...


Here's the Bankruptcy Act - this section sets out the provisions for a stay of any proceedings on foot against the bankrupt.


Stay of legal proceedings

             (1)  The Court may, at any time after the presentation of a petition, upon such terms and conditions as it thinks fit: 

                     (b)  stay any legal process, whether civil or criminal and whether instituted before or after the commencement of this subsection, against the person or property of the debtor:


Kathy Jackson was due in the Federal Court this morning where the HSU was scheduled to set out its case against her.   One of our correspondents in the courtroom tells me she did not appear.   The Court has adjourned until 2.30PM this afternoon.


If Kathy's intention was to shut down the HSU's action against her it's apperently failed Pia Akerman from The Australian is in court covering the case.



HSU members might have a view about pursuing a bankrupt for unrecoverable damages - but I doubt that this is about the money.

Here's Pia's story published at The Australian.

Former HSU national secretary Kathy Jackson declares bankruptcy


The Health Services Union has foreshadowed it will pursue its $2.5 million case against former national secretary Kathy Jackson despite her declaring bankruptcy on the opening day of the trial.

Shortly before the hearing was due to begin this morning, a new barrister representing Ms Jackson’s partner, Fair Work Commission vice-president Michael Lawler, revealed she is now listed as an undischarged bankrupt with a trustee appointed for her.

Federal Court judge Richard Tracey was due to begin a long-planned two-week trial to determine the HSU’s misappropriation claims against its former national secretary.

Mark Irving, representing the HSU, said the union would seek leave to continue the case, with a formal application to be made on Friday.

He noted that in an affidavit sworn earlier this month, Ms Jackson said she only had liabilities of $25,000 apart from her mortgage and assets of $278,000.

Mr Irving questioned whether Ms Jackson might remove herself from bankruptcy and then transfer the property away if a freeze order was not in place.

Justice Tracey said he would want the case to continue immediately if the union’s application was successful.

Neither Ms Jackson nor her legal team attended the court, while Mr Lawler was represented by barrister James Johnson, who told the court it was possible Ms Jackson could borrow to repay the alleged debt.

“There is always someone who is prepared to lend (but) she has no available assets,” he said.

The case will resume on Friday.