This is a collection of recent sealed section material sent in by Crikey subscribers about the disgraced and soon-to-be jailed former Federal MP Andrew Theophanous.

Sealed section from May 23

Crikey has long been of the view that people who sue for defamation are often dodgy operators who have a lot to hide and bad things will happen to them in the end. Alan Bond, Joh Bjelke Petersen, Laurie Connell, Roger Rogerson are Brian Quinn are just some of the better known examples.

The Herald Sun and Bruce Ruxton must be really enjoying seeing disgraced federal MP Andrew Theophanous in the slammer last night because Rupert spent $2 million taking a defamation case brought by Theophanous all the way to the full bench of the High Court over a Bruce Ruxton letter.

It established the precedent of qualified privilege to comment on political figures. Given this caselaw and the decision by the jury yesterday to find Theophanous guilty of fraud and bribery, we have to conclude that he is a disgusting, low-life sc**bag who should be locked up for many years. And we’ve heard tales from Labor staffers of more dodgy stories that will now come out about Theophanous. Send them in folks.

Also, we certainly hope there aren’t any other Federal Labor MPs with a penchant for exotic sex who have been a naughty around the immigration area.

GREAT THEOPHANOUS TALES

Sealed section from May 24

The call for Andrew Theophanous stories has produced these two rippers:

Hi Stephen,

There is so much out there about Andrew Theophanous it’s hard to know where to begin!

Back when he was a rapid left-wing academic at the college of advanced education on the Melbourne uni campus – writing turgid books predicting the triumph of the proletariat and the end of the capitalist system – his blunt propositioning of female students was an open secret. He was known variously as Dr A-for-a-lay and Dr Lay-on-top-of-us. This almost gained public acknowledgement in the latter part of the 1980s when two or three of his former “victims” – members of the ALP – were persuaded to detail their experience in the form of statutory declarations. Theophanous was summonsed to a meeting with the wild women of the Socialist Left (including the very lively Joan Coxhedge) and was confronted with this evidence. Apparently he broke down in tears, confessed, promised it was all in the past, and pledged his eternal loyalty by committing to vote as directed by the feminist Left caucus in all future internal party ballots. So much for the principles of the Left women: Theophanous should have been expelled from the party for this behaviour, but they chose instead to have a solid delegate who would vote with their block. What’s the old saying about the ALP? When it’s a contest between the numbers and principles, numbers wins every time.

Cheers, Name Withheld

THEOPHANOUS CRIMES

Sealed section from May 27

Interesting to see how big a crook Andrew Theophanous really was. This printing scam that The Age ran last year looks pretty interesting now: click here

And it is interesting that yet again the bloke was committing fraud to feed a gambling habit: click here

And this is the IRC judgment on the matter brought by the Theophanous staffer who blew the whistle on the scam: click here

The other crazy thing about Theophanous’ whole NCA case is how he got away with using his electorate staff and family members as psuedo paralegals in preparing for his trial for the last couple of years.

Given that complaints were made at the time, the department of Finance and Administration still have a lot of questions to answer in that regard.

And what about his wife standing by him despite the incredible revelations on the Sunday program yesterday by gun investigative reporter Ross Coulthart.

The wife says she’s a scientist used to assessing the facts. The only relevant fact that Crikey can envisage would prompt this ongoing support is access to his $80,000 a year indexed pension for life, which she would take over if he died first.

And who will get the pension if he goes to jail for 20 years? The loving and supportive wife I guess. Surely they’ll take it off this man who has already cost the taxpayer millions.

Finally, why is the NCA being disbanded after one of their finest operations? Surely the Libs haven’t been listening to the moans of people like John Elliott and Peter Scanlan just because they got off on a technicality.

DODGY THEOPHANOUS

Sealed section May 29

Andrew Theophanous really is quite a tragic and pathetic figure as the information about him continues to pour in.

Surely a lot of his senior ALP colleagues must have cottoned on to the fact that he was up to no good. The cover-up that was engineered during the saga in 1993 of the missing millions from the Chinese Student Human Rights Organisation was extraordinary. We know the Student president alleged Theophanous got $20,000 (before that allegation was retracted as a supposed ‘technical mistake’!) but it was widely suspected there was more to where the money went.

Some Immigration department bureaucrats have pointed out that a number of these Chinese students were subsequently arrested and convicted for drug offences and other serious crimes. Apparently the absurdity of the Government’s decision to let them stay as refugees was that these students were the privileged sons and daughters of the senior elite of the Chinese communist party. As Sunday reported in their 1999 story, the Parliamentary Migration Review Committee decided (Theophanous the lone dissenter) to send them home because they did not demonstrate refugee status or the risk of political persecution. And – in extraordinary circumstances – they are suddenly allowed to stay. Why this was so has never been satisfactorily explained.

The Theophanous case also threw up an interesting example of the legal rules about using VOIR DIRE evidence which is essentially discussions in the absence of the jury about what evidence can be put before them. During the hearing, one of the issues that arose was whether Theophanous could put ‘character’ evidence. You could imagine what that would have been like with days of former ALP and ethnic community alumni all talking about what a great man Andrew was. The Crown pulled an ace card to discourage Theophanous’s lawyers from doing this. They mentioned that they knew of a Turkish woman from whom Theophanous had also extorted sex in return for his immigration assistance. They said they would raise this information if Theophanous called character evidence. All of a sudden, the Defence dropped character evidence without argument.

We’ve also heard recently that Theophanous had sex with a number of Bosnian women in return for his political patronage.

Finally, it was curious that the Sydney papers did not give the Theophanous story much of a run at all last Saturday. Can you imagine the fun and games they would have had if Theophanous was a Lib. Think about poor old former Liberal health spokesman Bob Woods, his sins were tiny compared with Theophanous yet he seemed to get a bigger run in Sydney.

Peter Fray

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