$7.8 Million restrained after recent arrest of three men charged with conspiracy to defraud Commonwealth

The Australian Federal Police-led Criminal Assets Confiscation Taskforce (CACT) has restrained assets including seven houses, motor vehicles and bank accounts worth an estimated $7.8 million. This action follows the 10 June 2020 arrest of three men charged with conspiracy to defraud the Australian Government while working for an Australian public service agency in Canberra.

The CACT will allege the men conspired to direct information technology contracts through preferred suppliers, and then received financial benefits as a result of this activity, some of which was then used to purchase and renovate residential properties in Canberra.

The matter was reported to the AFP in July 2019 by the Australian public service agency, and an investigation was undertaken by AFP Northern Command’s Fraud and Anti-Corruption Team.

The three men arrested were:

A 47-year-old Griffith man and a 50-year-old Palmerston man charged with:

  • Conspiracy to defraud the Commonwealth, contrary to section 135.4 of the Criminal Code Act 1995 (Cth); and
  • Abuse of public office, contrary to section 142.2 of the Criminal Code Act 1995 (Cth).

A 36-year-old Barton man charged with:

  • Conspiracy to defraud the Commonwealth, contrary to section 135.4 of the Criminal Code Act 1995 (Cth).

The AFP-led CACT, which includes staff from the Australian Criminal Intelligence Commission, AUSTRAC, Australian Border Force and the Australian Taxation Office, was formed in 2011 as part of a multi-agency crackdown on criminal assets.

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