Like our Blog? Share this page    

NSW Police has confirmed Hills Shire councillor Ray Harty has been charged with dishonestly obtaining more than $220,000 by deception from Comet Training, which is jointly owned by the NSW divisions of the Construction, Forestry, Mining and Energy Union and the Master Builders Association.

The 72-year-old former general manager of Comet Training, who received the Medal of the Order of Australia in 2012 for services to the construction industry, will face the charge of allegedly dishonestly obtaining financial advantage by deception at Burwood Local Court on Thursday April 12.

Comet Training’s former financial controller, Amy Cai, has also been charged with fraudulently obtaining more than $200,000. Police said a 56-year-old woman was charged on Thursday with dishonestly obtaining financial advantage by deception. She was granted bail to appear at Burwood Local Court on Thursday, March 1.

Flemington police investigated complaints by Comet which last year reported a number of accounting irregularities. Police will allege a number of fraudulent payments totalling $445,000 were made into two personal bank accounts between 2011 and 2017.

The company has since gone into liquidation.NSW Corrective Services Minister David Elliott said Mr Harty should step down from his position on the local council.”Like any politician, once he is charged, he should step aside until he is given a clear verdict,” Mr Elliott said.The Federal Court of Australia found Mr Hardy rigged his election as secretary/treasurer of the NSW branch of the Australian Public Service Association in November 1988.

In declaring his election to the position as void, Justice Murray Wilcox said at the time that Mr Harty was not worthy of holding office in any union.

“It will be for others to judge, but my own opinion is that people who debauch the electoral process are unworthy of office in any union,” Justice Wilcox said.

Fairfax Media contacted Mr Harty for comment but he said: “I have no comment, contact me lawyer”.

By Anna Patty, Published 22 February 2018

Councillor Ray Harty

Councillor Ray Harty, Photo: Natalie Roberts NRO