Don’t let anyone say that corruption isn’t rife in local government.
Two men were yesterday jailed for their role in the country’s largest bribery case and Auckland Transport revealed six other staff left their jobs after investigations began into the scandal.
The episode has triggered warnings from the Serious Fraud Office that the case has not been completely closed – and that corruption required a toxic culture to grow.
Former Auckland Transport senior manager Murray Noone and Projenz managing director Stephen Borlase were sentenced at the High Court at Auckland to five years and five years six months respectively after being found guilty of bribery and corruption.
Noone’s request for a two-week delay in starting his sentence until his ankle was cut out of a cast put on after surgery was denied. He left the dock for prison hobbling on crutches.
The pair had been found to have engaged in a seven-year corrupt relationship where Projenz would make regular payments to Noone, overall amounting to more than $1m, while the latter was employed at council-owned organisations overseeing contracts awarded to Borlase’s firm.