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Media statement: [ABC 4 Corners program]

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SENATOR THE HON BILL HEFFERNAN Parliamentary Secretary to Cabinet Senator for New South Wales

Suite 703, Westfield Towers Telephone: (02) 9357.2600

100 William Street Facsimile: (02) 9357.2800

SYDNEY NSW 2011 Freecall: 1800 635 902

24 July 2001


This morning I viewed a tape of the ABC 4 Corners program, which went to air last night. In the program there were allegations of money changing hands in return for documents which were allegedly Supreme Court documents.

I have no knowledge of such a transaction, and it has yet to be proven that the documents mentioned were anything but public documents from protracted court proceedings.

Also, the program featured a meeting with myself, Mr Malouf, Mr Ford and their partners. This meeting was a result of a request to meet with these people to discuss their grievances with the Commonwealth Bank. At the meeting the only discussion centred around their grievances with the Commonwealth Bank. No documents were supplied to back up their assertions, and in the normal manner, I requested them to put their grievance in writing to me, to assist with representations to the Commonwealth Bank.

I attended the meeting in good faith, willing to listen and help. I was unaware the primary purpose of the meeting, as appears on 4Corners, was to secretly videotape me in an attempt to possibly embarrass me, or implicate me. I am unaware who arranged or carried out the secret videotaping.