SYDNEY (Reuters) – An Australian politician at the centre of a corruption probe told an inquiry on Wednesday that he had received envelopes full of thousands of dollars in cash at his parliament office as part of a scheme for Chinese nationals to fraudulently acquire visas.
Daryl Maguire, who quit the New South Wales (NSW) state parliament in 2018, agreed with the NSW Independent Commission Against Corruption that the scheme, where Chinese nationals paid large sums for a business in NSW to pretend they were employed there, was a scam.
Maguire and his business associate, Maggie Wang, received up to A$20,000 ($14,000) for each business they recruited to the scheme. He agreed it was a breach of public trust.
Wang had told the inquiry on Tuesday that she had shared profits from the scheme with Maguire, and also admitted lying to investigators.
Maguire accepted another allegation heard by the inquiry
Former NSW MP Daryl Maguire has told a corruption inquiry he did not report his involvement in a “cash-for-visa scam” because he was making money.
The former Wagga Wagga MP is accused of using his position in Parliament to benefit himself and his related business associates.
Within half an hour of questioning in NSW’s Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC), Mr Maguire admitted to using his parliamentary office and resources to conduct various business dealings, including receiving thousands of dollars in cash at his office as part of the visa scam.
He also admitted to acting as a shadow director for a business known as G8wayInternational, as well as using his parliamentary staff, resources, mailing system and even the parliamentary library for the business.
Mr Maguire said those business interests were not disclosed as they should have been in line with his obligations as an MP.
U.S. President Donald Trump participates in the first presidential debate against Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden at the Health Education Campus of Case Western Reserve University on September 29, 2020 in Cleveland, Ohio. Win McNamee/Getty Images
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