Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Dreaming of a white-shoe Christmas

Who said it was a slow news time of year? Amidst a rush of news overwhelmed by human tragedy there was a story perhaps lost in the last week that proves God does indeed have a sense of humour. What else to make of the Queensland Police defending Professor Clive Palmer as an "innocent victim"?

It was this: Clive Palmer’s adviser Andrew Crook held in police raids; Kidnap accused released on bail; Kidnap accused released on bail

To cut to the quick the high profile media adviser to Professor Clive was bailed with passport removed on charges that he was involved in a kidnap conspiracy.

The allegation is that a trio of Crook, Tony Smith, and a dubious Gold Coast PI, who was previously removed from the Qld police service, lured a NAB banker to Indonesia for a job interview. The position was the financial controller for the global empire of Clive Palmer. They then attempted to coerce him to change his evidence in a previous civil action.

Bail conditions exclude going anywhere near the Southport NAB branch. This is the related episode: Tony Smith sues NAB for his lost fortune

Tony Smith had previously sold the tourism accommodation group Breakfree to MFS before the GFS hit. Tony then embarked on building the biggest home on the Gold Coast. This all came unstuck when the shit hit the fan and we found out who was swimming naked.

Tony Smith doesn't seem to have been directly related to the murky circumstances around the subsequent collapse of MFS. He had mostly removed himself as an independent investor and sought to employ the funds to build his white-shoe emblem.

There is a local white-shoe connection here in Cairns in that Crook Media have also been doing the work for Aquis. Crook split early in the year with Andrew Crook looking solely after Professor Clive while the remaining partners took the other clients. Ben Ready now looks after Aquis at the new firm with a new name.

Crook Media also acted previously for the now failed MFS / Octaviar. Michael King who was most implicit in the MFS quagmire subsequently turned up at Aquis: King gets back on the horse; Former MFS boss Aquis project manager; Fungs back Aquis project manager; Crook Media and Aquis. King has also been recently reported to have been bidding on behalf of HK interests for the mortgagee horsey assets of notorious boganaire Nathan Tinkler in the Gold Coast hinterland.

Michael King has now been moved on from any association with Aquis,  apparently on the basis that his involvement was limited to the Reef Casino gambit and not Yorkeys, which is different from what was previously reported. King is facing charges from ASIC on misappropriation of funds including allegations of fabrication of documents related to the collapse of MFS. Can't work out why that could be a probity question? Consultant moves on after Reef Casino bid fails

I'm dreaming of a white-shoe Christmas .......

...... just like the ones we used to know 

I can't wait for 2015.

Profiles: Andrew Crook, Tony Smith and Mick Featherstone

Update: Conspiracy allegations against Clive Palmer’s adviser detailed in court documents

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