Julia Gillard is suffering the proverbial death by a thousand cuts as her previous life as a union fixers is getting unpacked:
PRIME Minister Julia Gillard knew about a $150,000 Slater and Gordon mortgage for a property used by union fraudster Bruce Wilson more than two years before the date she admitted to knowing about it in an interview with the firm’s management, a former senior partner claims.
In the latest revelation in the Australian Workers Union scandal, Nick Styant-Browne also revealed there was “deep disquiet” among S&G’s top-tier management about some of Ms Gillard’s conduct as a lawyer acting for the AWU.
And pressure on the Prime Minister over her role in the 17-year-old union scandal is expected to intensify today when former AWU official Ralph Blewitt will meet Victorian fraud squad detectives to provide extensive information about the fraud, involving up to $1 million in misappropriated funds.
Mr Styant-Browne, speaking from his US home, told the ABC’s 7.30 program that he was speaking out to challenge a “stunningly incomplete account” by Slater and Gordon of Ms Gillard’s departure from the law firm in late 1995.
The lawyer released new documents, including previously unseen portions of the transcripts from Ms Gillard’s “exit” interview which he suggested challenged comments made by the PM to her former firm.
His claims revolve around a $150,000 mortgage provided by the law firm for the purchase of a Melbourne property in 1993. The Fitzroy property was purchased in the name of Ralph Blewitt, who subsequently signed a Power of Attorney to Mr Wilson. The document was witnessed by Ms Gillard, who was in a romantic relationship with the union fraudster from 1991 to 1995.
According to Mr Styant-Browne, Ms Gillard “claimed in the interview in 1995 that the first she heard about the Slater and Gordon loan for the acquisition of the Kerr Street property was in about August of (1995)”.
But he said documents showed there was “no doubt that Ms Gillard knew about the mortgage from Slater and Gordon in March of 1993 (and) was specifically involved in taking steps to facilitate that mortgage”.
“That is a matter of documents, it’s not a matter of assertion and hearsay,” he said.