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ABC Comms Chief needs your help in answering our questions about payment to the Capitol rioter

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(Nick Leys with his wife Louise Milligan)


Nick Leys is the ABC's Head of Communications.

Or non-communications.

Yesterday we published details of a potentially criminal act on the part of the ABC.

It's certainly morally wrong.

That is the ABC's payment of USD $2,500 (minus tax) to a known US felon and US Capitol rioter, John Sullivan.

The ABC spouts sermons about President Trump inciting the riots.

Now we know the ABC itself paid a man who video-taped himself doing just that - inciting people to commit crimes.

Before the ABC made the payment, it knew that Sullivan's video it intended to pay him for included footage of himself saying:

"We accomplished this shit.

"We did this together.

"Fuck yeah!

"We are all a part of this history."

"Let's burn this shit down."

If anyone was inciting insurrection against US democracy, it was Sullivan.

So it's important for us to know how and why the ABC paid Australian taxpayer funds to him.

At 09:05AM Sydney time yesterday (0605 my time),  I wrote to the ABC's head of communications, Nick Leys.

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I'd received no reply by 4PM Sydney time, so I sent this polite chaser.

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Keep in mind I'd included links to my reports on the matter, and a copy of the ABC's remittance advice to Sullivan as well as the FBI agent's Affidavit and Indictments against the ABC sub-contractor, Mr Sullivan.

Leys replied:

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I was surprised that the ABC's most senior communications professional would adopt that approach, particularly given that I'd forwarded him all the necessary details supporting my request, details that disclosed serious issues in enriching a felon for his crimes.

I replied:

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Leys replied:

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I was becoming frustrated by this point.

I said,

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When I received no reply, I followed up with:

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I could not believe it when Leys replied:

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I immediately followed up with the original email again.

Hi Nick,
Does the ABC have a statement on its payment of USD $2,500 to Washington riot felon John SULLIVAN?
Will the ABC apologise for enriching SULLIVAN as a result of his offending?
For convenience, I've attached your remittance advice to the offender SULLIVAN, along with one of his police charge-sheet photographs.
Thank you,
Michael Smith
Attachments area
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As at the time of publishing this, Leys has not replied.
I have never experienced such unprofessional, schoolboy behaviour from a taxpayer funded senior executive.
The matter is serious.
It's in the hands of legislators and law enforcement here and in the US.
Every touch leaves it trace. 
Like a slobby boozy lunch on a cheap tie.
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You can help remind Mr Leys of his responsibilities BY EMAIL here:

[email protected]

If the ABC’s PR person Nick Leys is too important to answer questions, despite earning 250k a year to do so - so please direct your questions to the ABC's head of news Gaven Morris. 

[email protected]