On Monday, 25 September 1995 then AWU Joint National Secretary Ian Cambridge made this record in his diary.
Bill the Greek's role in The AWU Scandal has been a bit overlooked - until now.
What's brought it to life for me is his bank statements.
I've been sitting on them for a while now - hesitant to publish because they'd be highly damaging to Bill's reputation if he was a man of good repute.
In the end I've decided to publish because as the statements show, Bill the Greek is a fraudster and I don't think he has any sort of reputation to protect.
Wilson's modus operandi was to try to employ an underling to do the dirty work - running money through accounts, having their name put forward for sham roles etc.
In Telikostiglou Wilson had a crooked fraudster as his willing - if unreliable - accomplice.
And here is the news - Bill's tragic bank statements.
I have seldom seen so serially dishonest a person. Bill bounced many more cheques than were honoured. He was in fine company with Gillard and Wilson.
GILLARD knew Bill the Greek quite well - this is an extract from her Exit Interview at Slater and Gordon.
PG: Right. And, when Bruce came to Victoria, did he come alone or were there other Western Australian people who came with him?
JG: No, he came alone. Yes, at that stage I think he came alone. He was subsequently joined by an organiser from Western Australia called, his proper name (was) Vassilis Telikostoglou. He is known as either Bill Telikostoglou or simply Bill the Greek.
Bill the Greek was Wilson's right hand man in Melbourne.
He shared the same address with his boss - as his licence details on the back of these cheques show.
He also helped out with slush fund duties.
This file note from Brendan Murphy's Bruce Wilson criminal prosecution file records the court challenge and then the April 1995 election in which Bruce formally moved into his National Construction Branch job and away from the Victoria branch Secretary's role. At the same time Wilson's man Ralph Blewitt made way for a new and curious team in WA.
On 21 April 1995 WILSON closed the AWU Workplace Reform Association bank accounts.
(Around this time WILSON had good cause to believe that at least some AWU officials were on to him. There's a paper trail that suggests the Woodside slush fund deal had come to the notice of the new AWU WA branch team - more on that in another post.)
From this point on WILSON was much more cautious.
On 27 April, 1995 without the AWU WRA Inc cash Wilson wrote out this cheque for $15,000 on the AWU Members Welfare Association account for cash - the rear of the cheque show $10K went to Kon Spyridis and $5K to cash.
Spyridis was the builder engaged by Bill the Greek on Gillard's renovations which were pressing ahead during 1995.
Here's an extract from Gillard's Exit Interview:
"....it's been put to a partner of Slater & Gordon in the last week that there exists a receipt with respect to renovation work conducted at your home which is in some way connected with funds from the Australian Workers Union Workplace Reform Association account.
Gillard explained that she'd heard the rumour then launched into Bill the Greek's role.
I have spoken to David Feeney. I spoke to him on Friday afternoon. What I believe to have happened is this. This year I had additional work done on my place to try and do something about the outside, the outside is still not painted the right colour, and needed, needed further work done on it. Bill the Greek recommended to me a friend of his called Con, the last name I believe to (be) Spiri, Spiridis or Spiritis or a word to that effect. Con organised for me, or Con came and did the following things.
She then described some of Con's work - she wasn't happy with it.
When I came home and saw the posts and the windows which got done in, done in one day I raised it immediately with Bill the Greek in fairly vociferous tones and said this has just totally buggered up this job. This is just hideous, you know, you need to talk to Con about it. Bill had been the link to Con. Bill said he would speak to Con about it. Con came back subsequently and did the fence and I raised it with Con. Con said he would get, he knew he had made an error with the windows. He would get the windows replaced with wood windows. He didn't think the posts were his fault because that was the sort of posts that were described to him so there was an ongoing debate about whose fault it was that the posts were the wrong posts. He basically half finished, did most of the fence though bits of it are uncompleted and then he didn't return. I periodically raised with Bill what on earth is happening with Con and these windows and these posts and the tiling's uncompleted and the fence is uncompleted. Bill would say I'll fix it, I'll fix it but it never got fixed.
Life got a little bit more crazy than it had been and I ceased to sort of pay much regard to it or think about it but there was this uncompleted work at the property or to the extent it was completed large bits of it were done wrong. I don't know what transactions Con and Bill have had about the account for that work, but I believe what has happened is Con has gone to the AWU looking for Bill or looking for payment for the account.
Obviously, it accords with what David Feeney has told me that he was sent away by the AWU and without explanation an account from Con was put in my letter box last week, so that's the first account that I've had from him. It is an account dated June directed towards me, yeah, I think that's right, directed towards me, dated June and it's got a letter on it, some of which is not decipherable but talks about finishing off the tiles. The account is for $3780. I've paid $2000 of it already and I'm making arrangements to get the $1780 together to pay the rest of it. I have suggested to David Feeney that I think the way forward in relation to this is for me to simply meet with Bob Smith at FIME and say someone came here looking for payment of an account. That's nothing that I have caused, nothing to do with me, if it is this account then I've paid it, even though it hurt me to do so given the quality of the job. If there is anything else then I will pay it.
JG: Sorry, I'm getting confused, the, Geoff when we were not on tape asked me a series of questions about things that I have had done to the house that I don't recall getting invoiced for. It occurred to me that one of those things is, and Geoff has actually seen this with his own eyes. Bill the Greek, whilst I was at work one day, built for me a low level brick fence. I didn't ask him to do that. The result was truly hideous and I think Geoff saw it when he dropped me off one night and everybody else who's passed my house has commented on it. In order to try and make it look less hideous, part of the work that Con was to do was to mortar it and put pickets on it that goes like that to try and stop it looking quite as Greek, dare one say.
I didn't, I've never, I didn't pay for the bricks, I didn't pay for the bricks. I've never had an account in relation to the fence. Now, I don't, I don't know what that means about where Bill got the bricks from, and I don't know whether that means anybody worked with him on the fence, that I haven't paid. He, you know, he pleased as punch sort of said he had built it for me. That he had built it for me. Whether that means he himself did it, given Bill's obvious difficulties with the truth I no longer know.
PG: What are Bill's obvious difficulties with the truth?
JG: He's just a big Greek bullshit artist.
And a fraudster. A serial passer of bad cheques. And the man in charge of much of Gillard's renovations.
Here's Bill's bank statement in the weeks leading up to Gillard's record of interview. It's not hard to imagine cheques to Con the builder amongst the pile of cheques his bank has bounced.
Just about all of Bill's outgoing cheques were made out to Cash. Of course. Like this April 1995 one which ended up in a Mr Dimopoulos's pocket - one of the few that didn't bounce.
Recall that one of the central allegations against GILLARD/WILSON in her home renovations was the charge that AWU money had somehow been used to pay the builder.
Note the cheques that flowed from this 15 May 1995 deposit of $10,000 into the perpetually overdrawn Big Greek Bullshit Artist's account.
You'll recall from a couple of days ago that one Debbie Lawn was the drawer that $10,000 cheque which Wayne Hem deposited into Bill's bank account.
And Debbie was also somehow on the AWU Payroll at the time.
No wonder Gillard couldn't rule out her home renovations being funded by the AWU or the AWU WRA Inc.
With Bill the Greek running the show and supervising the payments on her behalf - anything was possible.