News

MP row: cops deny lying

Steve Cansdell
Steve Cansdell JoJo Newby

NSW Police have denied allegations an officer lied about the whistleblower whose allegations forced the resignation of the former Member for Clarence Steve Cansdell.

In a story in a Sydney newspaper, Maclean solicitor Mark Spagnolo, who represents the whistleblower, Kath Palmer, said police lied when they claimed the former member's ex-staffer refused to give a formal statement.

A police media statement issued last week said Mrs Palmer had refused to be interviewed by police in relation to her part in the signing of a false statutory declaration.

This was provided as a key reason in the case being dropped by both the Commonwealth and NSW directors of public prosecutions.

But Mr Spagnolo, who represents Mrs Palmer, said this was a lie.

He provided The Daily Examiner with a copy of a letter sent to Detective Peter O'Reilly on October 19, 2011, which offered to provide police with an "induced statement" which would effectively protect Mrs Palmer from prosecution.

"They (police) contacted Kath and I and indicated they will charge her with the most serious offence of pervert the course of justice as she went to the press about Cansdell," Mr Spagnolo said.

"Kath, on legal advice from me, offered an induced statement and declined to be interviewed formally under caution due to the fact that the police had stated that they were looking at charging her.

"This is normal and one would have expected that the police would have been happy to give a whistleblower the full protection of the law."

Yesterday Police media issued a statement denying these allegations.

"The person (Mrs Palmer) was informed she had the opportunity to participate in an interview under caution," a police spokeswoman said.

"The offer by the person's legal representative to provide an induced statement was declined by police at the time because they did not believe it was appropriate."

The spokeswoman said this led to the person never giving a formal statement about her allegations.

Mrs Palmer provided a preliminary complaint to the ICAC (Independent Commission Against Corruption) in July 2011 followed by a detailed statement in early September 2011.

That happened three days before Mr Cansdell's admission and resignation on September 16.

The commission dropped the case on November 3 last year about a fortnight after Mr Cansdell admitted to making "a dumb choice six years ago".

One of the reasons ICAC gave for dropping its investigation was that it was satisfied police were investigating the matter.

Though he didn't name Mrs Palmer in his statement, Mr Cansdell said he claimed a third party was driving his car when he was booked for speeding in 2005.

The action was taken, he said, in order to avoid the loss of his licence.

"I didn't realise the gravity of it," he said at the time.




Courier service gets the flowers to the stalls on time

Fastways Couriers donated their time and services to get flowers to the region well in time for Daffodil Day.

Find out how the flowers for Daffodil Day are so fresh.

Daffodil Day work emergency puts Kylie in charge

FAMILY VALUES: Kylie Cameron and her mum and dad, Karen and John Cameron, at the Daffodil Day stall at Bunnings, South Grafton, on Friday.

Family bands together to keep Daffodil Day booth going.

VIDEO: Meet the Candidates in Maclean

KAREN TOMS: Says being a councillor for eight years has been a tough gig. She is worried about council's debt and financial sustainability. As a councillor she says she approaches spending with the thought, what if it was my money.Photo Tim Howard / Daily Examiner

What do the council candidates stand for?

Latest deals and offers

John Krasinski has better sex now he's in good shape

John Krasinski says there's at least one good reason to get jacked

Kanye West gets 'free reign' at VMAs

Kanye West has been let off the leash for the VMAs

Robbie Williams sings at manager's funeral

Robbie Williams and Lamar sang at the funeral of their manager

Courtney Stodden gets Reborn Doll

Courtney Stodden is trying to get over her recent miscarriage

Kate McKinnon 'destitute' before SNL

Kate McKinnon says she can't do anything but act

FBI investigating Leslie Jones website hack

The FBI are investigating Leslie Jones' personal website hack

REVEALED: Pat Rafter's $18m Coast house on the market

Check out the photos of the Coast's most expensive property for sale

The "correction we had to have" in Gladstone's rentals

UPWARD MARCH: The rental vacancy rate in Gladstone has improved for the first time in more than a year, providing a confidence boost in the market.

Vacancy rates improve with signs that things are getting betterF

ISLAND FOR SALE: Cheap Fraser Coast island drops price again

Suna Island in the Great Sandy Strait will be auctioned by Ray White Hervey Bay on Saturday morning.

This is the cheapest island you will find for sale in Australia

How a family home can fit on a 250sq m block

This is what you can build on 250m2.

Here's the floor plan of a home built on 250sq m

Investors eye Gladstone's $4m island with resort approval

UP FOR SALE: Turtle Island is on the market.

CHINESE and Sydney investors flag interest in Gladstone island.

Take a sneak peek at this $19m Whitsunday mansion

Mandalay House features a private helipad.

Mandalay is currently on the market with an asking price of $19m