Bone Broke

Posted: July 1, 2013 in HSU Saga, Media, Politics

Today’s appearance in court by Craig Thomson was interesting to say the least, not only in the way it unfolded, but also in the way it was reported.

As reported here first yesterday Thomson set out to seek a summary judgement something that he hopes will be determined on the 19th July when the case is due to go back before the court.

Also as predicted the prosecution are attempting to block this and are seeking for the matter to be heard in County Court.

Magistrate Charlie Rozencwaig was quick to point out that there was no valid reason to not hear the matter in Local Court, as Local Court is authorised to hear matters that fall below a certain dollar value, and the charges against Thomson are a fraction of that value.

In fact the total dollar figure of all the charges combined equates to approximately $26,000. Far less than the $500,000 widely reported by the press for the past few years.

Most of this is made up of expenses incurred whilst travelling for work, things like ice-creams, drinks, in-house movies, meals and other such expenses.

Magistrate Charlie Rozencwaig questioned both the expenses and the interest in the prosecution continually referring to pornographic movies. The Magistrate questioned the prosecution on the allowances Thomson would have had whilst being away from home for work. He questioned whether if Thomson was away overnight would he not be entitled to have a drink with a meal, maybe even a wine, also would he have been allowed to watch an in-house movie whilst away on business?

I believe the magistrate may have been hinting at what I have suspected all along, that there are an amazing amount of ridiculous charges designed only to increase the dollar value of the charges and the overall number of charges laid.

Craig Thomson - Aiming to speed up the process

Craig Thomson – Aiming to speed up the process

Whist on the subject of movies the Magistrate also asked the question of would it make a difference if the movies were pornographic or non-pornographic.

The answer of course in terms of money and in terms of charges laid is of course no, a wrongful expense is a wrongful expense, whether it’s porn or a kids movie.

However in terms of media hype and creating an image for the defendant it makes a huge difference. The movies in question are classed as R-Rated movies, they are not XXX or as graphic as the type of material that can be found on the internet. It is adult entertainment, the same as a Quentin Tarantino film, and any sex scene would be no more graphic than something you would find in a sex scene from most horror flicks or on SBS on a Friday night.

Academy Award winning Adult Entertainment

Academy Award winning Adult Entertainment

In what seems on obvious attempt to create a spectacle for political reasons, the list of possible witnesses against Thomson is as long as your arm, over 140 in fact, with the possibility of calling 43 of them to give evidence. Magistrate Charlie Rozencwaig questioned the prosecution on whether this was necessary given that the case really revolved around whether Thomson was authorised for the expenditure or not, surely that does not require that many witnesses.

This whole episode is an absolute travesty designed for trial by media and being spun along, dragged out, and turned into a circus sideshow by a desperate Coalition who appear to be stage-managing the entire production.
The overall charges, most of them travel expenses total $26,000.

To bring these charges worth $26,000 the taxpayer has funded police investigations in two states for around three years, including interstate travel costs and accommodation, and associated accommodation expenses that are no doubt included on Thomson’s list of charges. The taxpayer has also funded legal teams against Thomson, a four-year investigation by Fair Work Australia with the added expenses involved there, a senate enquiry into that FWA investigation, an Independent report into that investigation, and court costs which continue to mount.

That doesn’t really sound like millions of taxpayer dollars well spent to me.

Then there is the amount of resources wasted by the politicians who are supposed to represent our interests, not facilitate witch-hunts. $26,000 probably wouldn’t cover the phone calls made by George Brandis to the Police Ministers and Attorney Generals in NSW and Victoria to push the case along.

If Eric Abetz were asked to pay a carbon price for all the hot air he has opened his mouth and emitted on this matter $26,000 would come nowhere near covering it.

Huge phone bills and hot air - Stage managers Brandis and Abetz

Huge phone bills and hot air – Stage managers Brandis and Abetz

As expected the media has had their own distorted view of today’s events.

Many have claimed that Thomson is pursuing a summary judgement to avoid a jury trial.

Those who have reported this are either delusional or deliberately misleading as the logic in that argument is flawed in the extreme.

If Thomson really wanted to drag things along as has often been insinuated he would be hoping for a jury trial.

The major reason he would be better off with a jury trial though is that he would be 12 times as likely to be acquitted. In a summary judgement it is totally up to one magistrate to decide the outcome, whereas in a jury trial it only takes one of the twelve jurors to have reasonable doubt for Thomson to be acquitted.

To report this as something Thomson would seek to avoid is flat-out irresponsible and deliberately misleading.

So it would seem that despite all the talk of rushing things along by the Coalition they seem to be encouraging the exact opposite.

In fact the only one that seems to want things rushed along is Thomson himself, and seems quite confident in doing so, to the extent that he would risk not going before a jury.

It may be just as well that Thomson has a legal cost fundraiser coming up on Thursday, as it would seem that Coalitions plan of sending him broke is humming along quite nicely indeed.

Craig Thomson Fundraiser

Thomson may need all the help he can get at this rate.

Whether Thomson is innocent or guilty the way this whole sideshow has played out has been shameful, but has certainly taught us one valuable lesson.

Proving ones innocence comes with a hefty price tag.

Damn hefty.

Like Wixxyleaks on Facebook here

Like Wixxyleaks on Facebook here

Comments
  1. Fed up says:

    One wonders at all those charges. Carbon copies of one another. One would think one would only need a handful If one is found to reasonable use of the card, that would clear the rest.

    Why in the hell would one need so many witness,

    Yes, something stinks in this case.

    At least th matter appears to be coming to ahead.

  2. Dave Bradley says:

    Thanks Wixxie
    The persecution by headlines continues
    ‘Craig Thomson heckled outside Melbourne Magistrates’ Court ‘
    ‘Prosecutors oppose Thomson push to avoid jury trial’
    ‘Craig Thomson tries to stop fraud and theft case being moved to higher court’
    ‘Prosecutors to fight Craig Thomson’s bid to have magistrate, not jury’
    Was this quote below too long for a headline:
    Magistrate Charlie Rozencwaig today questioned why so many witnesses would need to be called if the main issue was whether Mr Thomson had legitimately used his union credit cards
    how about
    Magistrate questions number of witnesses
    or
    Magistrate says Thomson may have legitimately used credit card
    or
    Magistrate says Thomson entitled to use the credit cards for accommodation and “incidentals”.
    Nup that’s too much like real news

  3. Great article, Wixxy – I’d like to comment further, but I’m very reluctant to say anything as the matter is still sub judice.

    I hope you’ll be at the fundraiser and hopefully we may have a chance to chat.

  4. Roberta Hillier says:

    But he has already been judged as guilty & the poor bloke haa to now peove his innocence. ThT’s what trial by media does when aanctioned by people in power who bully the establishment into acting! When i travelled for work my employer paid expenses & frankly the only difference is Mr Thomson had his own credit card provided by his employer.

  5. tullibardine says:

    I do hope he can write a book, and perhaps recoup some money. It certainly is a very sad story of a vendetta perpetrated by manipulative and truly evil people. And now the true figure is around 26k over 7 yrs, really. Can someone do a figure on what it cost for the police time on this from go to woe. What a laugh they have had at the expense of all.

  6. eleanawi says:

    I’ll be glad when it’s all done and dusted.

  7. Lizzie says:

    Brillant Pete – thank you!

  8. wirilda says:

    I cheer louder than I did than in the final shootout in the movie if Django was let loose at the front bench of the Libs and their certain HSU/FWA buddies!

  9. kyle says:

    ,ve only followed the msm view on this issue, so interesting read. what about the allegations that he paid for hookers on his credit cards?

    • wixxy says:

      If he is guilty of that so be it… But that decision can be based on the evidence in a summary judgement by a magistrate at any rate

      Why would anyone want this to drag on for another year unless it was for political reasons?

    • Bloss says:

      Hi Kyle
      If you google ‘Independent Australia.net’ you will find Peter’s brilliant investigation into the whole affair under ‘Jacksonville.’ It exposes the MSM and police for what they are in relation to the Craig Thomson affair: lackeys for the Coalition.

    • Marilyn says:

      It still would not be illegal because there were no rules governing the use of the credit card but considering he was travelling with his first wife on every occasion and on three occasions was in a different state it sort of renders the whole question pointless.

  10. Gail Clarke says:

    Unbelievable that tax payers money is being used to fund this illegal and immoral witch hunt, will we ever see a fair outcome for this or the Slipper incident, that was as close to treason as we have come to date, this Liarbril Opposition has to be the worst EVER in their history , even Howard didnt tell as many lies as have been told over the last 6 years, Politics Liberal style has emulated and over taken the scumbag lying Republicans in the USA

  11. Angela says:

    Craig Thomson will be owed an awful lot of apologies from those who have been acting like a pack of rabid dogs ripping into him without absolute proof of any wrong doing or having the brains to look at the case objectively.

    It wasn’t hard to understand the conditions of use of credit cards back then when away from home where you give up EVERYTHING you have access to by working 24/7 for your employer and ALL expenses must be covered…Look at that woman McClymont who was the leader of the pack! I hope she makes the biggest public apology & hangs her head in absolute shame for her role in being one of the nastiness & cruelest of all with her personal attacks & assumptions of guilt!

  12. cornlegend says:

    Its a bloody good thing that we have you ,Wixxy, to at least get the facts of this out to us.
    from everything you have said, I don’t think even 1 media outlet has him “innocent until proven guilty”
    Trial by Media is the rule now.
    Soon we won’t need a judicial system, just hand it over to the Media.
    What a sick and sorry mess we are in

  13. Some of the charges involve purchasing cigarettes and I seem to recall that Craig Thomson does not smoke. Can someone confirm this? (I expect I read both of these from Peter Wixs but I can’t locate the reference).

    Are there any other prominent HSU officials who smoke? Names?

  14. Dez says:

    Please let us know when there is a fund to contribute to for Thomson to sue Brandis, Abetz, Abbott and the Telegraph into bankruptcy.

    I’d happily donate every cent I have.

  15. Fed up says:

    That $26,000. I believe was spent over more than seven years. in a job, that demanded continual traveling between the states.

    Does not seem to be that high.

  16. galileodarwin says:

    I have just read the book “Downfall: How the Labor Party ripped itself apart”, by Aaron Patrick. It is the kind of book about political events you would write if you relied entirely on the second-hand reports of other lazy journalists, without asking any intelligent questions or investigating contradictions in the statements and behaviour of the leading figures described and judged. I find almost all of the mainstream journalists shallow in their reporting, but this book is the quintessence of shallowness. The reporting of events involving Craig Thomson and Kathy Jackson is based on the misrepresentations of both that we have been reading and listening to for years in the mainstream media. Patrick takes it for granted that Thomson is a criminal and that Kathy Jackson is an honest whistleblower. No mention is made at all of Jeff Jackson’s predilection for frequenting brothels with HSU money or the private companies set up by Kathy and Jeff. Patrick follows the trend of those he borrows from in completely ignoring the presumption of innocence in regard to Thomson and the documentary evidence of the criminality of the Jacksons and Michael Lawler. Peter Wicks and Independent Australia are mentioned patronisingly and disparagingly for their “strident tone” and “appeal to outsiders who don’t trust the traditional media”. Patrick pays tribute to people in the “ALP union movement” whom he does not name, and to numerous journalists whom he does name and to whom he attributes the “healthy civic life” we enjoy! Among these many who all “do fantastic work” (actually literally true, only he doesn’t know the basic meaning of the word) are Kate McClymont, Andrew Clennell, Samantha Maiden, Steve Lewis, Imre Salusinszky, and Andrew Bolt. All I can say is that I thank Peter Wicks and Independent Australia for appealing to those who have the intelligence and powers of judgment that make them “outsiders” who don’t trust the traditional media”.

  17. Kevin says:

    Over 140 witnesses, with the possibility of 43 being called. I can’t help wondering what proportion of these witnesses are fiberal party members, and how many will have been ‘coached’ by one Senator George Brandis D.H.

    I will be extremely upset if this contrived case has the planned effect, that being to help ankles abbott get elected PM.

  18. Bridget says:

    I trust CT, if found guilty, will not only return members funds but also funds donated to assist in his legals. Wixxy – you down play the value of claims but how much is it fair to misappropriate before matters should be investigated?

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