Liberals want union inquiry
Pressure is building on opposition leader Tony Abbott to commit to a broad inquiry into unions in answer to the outcry over rorting in the HSU and AWU.PT3M10S http://www.canberratimes.com.au/action/externalEmbeddedPlayer?id=d-2au07 620 349 December 5, 2012
Craig Thomson has denied scores of allegations that he used his Health Services Union credit card to pay for personal travel expenses, flights and prostitutes.
Mr Thomson filed his 28-page defence with the Federal Court on Tuesday in an action brought against him by Fair Work Australia.
The MP has denied most of the claims made against him by the national industrial umpire, and has demanded that some allegations be dropped altogether because, he argues, Fair Work Australia does not have the power to pursue them as they happened too many years ago.
Independent MP Craig Thomson Photo: Alex Ellinghausen
The court case has now been set for Mr Thomson's hearing, which will be held in Melbourne and begin on February 1.
Mr Thomson faces civil action over the unauthorised use of union credit cards to pay for prostitutes, and cash advances totalling more than $102,337.45.
Fair Work Australia is seeking to fine Mr Thomson for these alleged misdeamenours and others, and the repayment of the funds.
The statement of claim lists various escort services Fair Work Australia alleges Mr Thomson used, including Young Blondes, Melbourne's Boardroom Escort Agency, and a brothel called Tiffany's.
Mr Thomson this afternoon referred all questions on his defence to his lawyer Chris McArdle.