Greek-Australian Health Services Union (HSU) national secretary Kathy Jackson (née Koukouvaos) took to the witness stand in the Melbourne Magistrates Court.on Thursday, in the fraud and theft trial of Craig Thomson.
During heated cross-examination by Thomson’s lawyers, Jackson described the union as being a “boy’s club,” in which she was left out.
Jackson was one of a number of people who accused the former federal Labor MP of wrongdoing. Thompson is charged with 145 offenses relating to alleged misuse of his union credit card between 2002 and 2007, while serving as HSU national secretary.
Thomson, aged 49, is accused of using the union-issued Commonwealth Bank MasterCard and a Flight Center account to rack-up more than $28,000 in personal expenses, including sexual services from escort agencies, in-house adult films in hotel rooms, as well as flights and cigarettes for his then wife. He is also accused of withdrawing cash for his own personal use.
In her testimony, Jackson told the court that during the audit which followed Thomson’s exit from the union, she came across a mysterious folder while investigating his expenses. The file contained credit card statements and memos explaining some of the former MP’s expenditure. On one of the memos was written in Thomson’s handwriting the name “International Immobiliare,” which was the established merchant name for an Australian brothel.
Thomson has pleaded not guilty to all 145 fraud and theft charges. The trial continues.
Meanwhile, Jackson has been offered police protection after a dirt-covered shovel was dumped on her doorstep, in what was an apparent threat for her digging her own grave.