EXCLUSIVE

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Building on trust: CFMEU secretary Brian Parker. Photo: Nick Moir

Colourful business identity Jim Byrnes has vowed to give evidence at the royal commission into union corruption about construction union bribery, links to organised criminals and the allegedly underhand dealings of CFMEU boss Brian Parker.

Fairfax Media can also reveal that crime figure and allegedly corrupt building company owner George Alex hired Labor power-broker Graham Richardson to help lobby developers and secure contracts in the mid-2000s.

In an exclusive interview, ''Big Jim'' Byrnes said he is ''looking forward'' to telling commission investigators about his dealings with Mr Alex and the construction union and says he will:

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Building company owner George Alex. Photo: Leigh Henningham

Identify the union official and ''bagman'' who Mr Byrnes says he saw take an envelope of cash at the home of Mr Alex.

Allege that he helped to buy a racehorse for Mr Parker and builder Denis Delic and then registered the horse in the names of the trio's wives to disguise Mr Parker's involvement in the racing venture.

Identify at least four senior serving or former CFMEU organisers who have allegedly been bribed by builders, including Mr Alex.

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Murdered Hells Angels boss Zeljko Mitrovic. Photo: Supplied

Mr Alex is a former bankrupt who has been repeatedly chased by the Tax Office over unpaid tax and examined by law enforcement agencies over his dealings with organised crime figures.

Mr Richardson told Fairfax Media that he consulted for Mr Alex and his business partners for ''a year or two''.

''My job was to try and get them work in the construction industry, but the reality was that there was too many established firms and it was a very difficult task,'' he said.

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Whistleblower Brian Fitzpatrick. Photo: Wolter Peeters

''I got them [the company] a couple of dribs and drabs, but didn't get them any permanent contracts for their labour hire firm,'' Mr Richardson said.

Fairfax Media is not suggesting

Mr Richardson ever acted improperly or knew of Mr Alex's extensive criminal associations in Sydney and Melbourne. But Mr Alex's link to the former NSW Labor senator highlights Mr Alex's extensive connections in the Labor movement.

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Another whistleblower: Andrew Quirk.

Fairfax Media can also reveal that in an additional attempt to win union support for his building firms, Mr Alex employed CFMEU organiser Sammy Manna's son, Adriano, after he was released from a 12-year stint in prison for attempted murder.

Mr Alex has extensive organised crime ties in Melbourne and Sydney, where his labour hire businesses operate with union backing. Mr Byrnes was involved in some of Mr Alex's business affairs before the pair fell out over a business deal.

Mr Byrnes was once Alan Bond's financial adviser and has a chequered history dating back to the 1980s, when he was jailed for the deemed supply of heroin, acquitted of fraud charges and banned twice from operating companies.

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Union corruption: Jim Byrnes says he will tell all at the royal commission. Photo: Ben Rushton

In 2007, after Mr Byrnes pleaded guilty to smashing the office window of a solicitor, a NSW judge agreed that Mr Byrnes should avoid a jail term and that he had made a success of himself after a bad start in life.

Mr Byrnes's allegations about the inappropriate ties between union officials and Mr Alex and Mr Delic corroborate claims recently made by two CFMEU officials turned whistleblowers, Brian Fitzpatrick and Andrew Quirk.

The union organiser who Mr Byrnes says he saw taking a ''white envelope'' filled with cash from Mr Alex is the same union official who Mr Fitzpatrick has alleged was inappropriately lobbying for Mr Alex's firms. Mr Fitzpatrick has alleged that this official threatened to kill him after Mr Fitzpatrick questioned why Mr Alex was being promoted by the union despite ripping off workers.

Mr Fitzpatrick, Mr Quirk and Mr Byrnes have all alleged that Mr Parker, the NSW CFMEU secretary, was socialising and supporting Mr Alex, despite Mr Alex's shonky building industry dealings.

Mr Byrnes said: ''I warned Parker to keep away from George Alex as Alex was tied up with bikies and gangsters. But Parker didn't [stay away]. What is most disturbing is that he favoured George Alex and his corrupt business practices over the rights of workers.''

Mr Byrnes said that Mr Parker allowed Mr Alex to avoid the usual CFMEU auditing to ensure workers were paid their full entitlements. Mr Alex recently moved to repay workers hundreds of thousands of dollars in outstanding entitlements.

Mr Byrnes said he will tell the royal commission that Mr Parker was given expensive gifts by Mr Delic and that the CFMEU favoured firms owned by Mr Delic, who was a business associate of both Mr Alex and murdered Hells Angels boss Zeljko Mitrovic.

Mr Byrnes has also alleged that in 2010, he bought a $14,000 racehorse for Mr Parker and Mr Delic, who recently died of a heart attack.

Horse ownership records obtained by Fairfax Media show that until recently, the racehorse Maroota's Way was registered in the names of ''Mrs A Delic, Mrs K Parker & Mrs C G Byrnes''.

Mr Parker declined to answer specific questions about the horses, although NSW branch president Rita Malia said in a statement: ''Mr Parker disclosed his friendship with Denis Delic and the fact that he was once a co-owner in two horses'' with him.

In response to Mr Byrnes's allegations, Mr Parker said in a statement: ''Jim Byrnes is a convicted criminal who has previously been struck off as a director of a company. Any statements by him should be carefully weighed.''

Mr Parker also insisted that his dealings with Mr Delic and Mr Alex were appropriate and he had never used his influence to advantage the pair's firms.