Revealed: Eddie Obeid's secret diaries
Mr Obeid's diaries, recently tendered at the inquiry, paint an extraordinary picture of business meetings. Photo: Dean Sewell
Eddie Obeid's claims to a corruption inquiry that he played no part in his family's business interests have been contradicted by his private diaries, which list scores of meetings with Sydney's most influential people, some of whom did deals with companies tied to the former Labor minister's family.
''I've repeated that dozens of times and I'll repeat it again. I have not been involved in the business for 25 years!'' Mr Obeid angrily told the Independent Commission Against Corruption which has been investigating allegations that he and his family made a $30 million profit from an allegedly corrupt government coal tender presided over by the now disgraced resources minister Ian Macdonald.
But contrary to his evidence, Mr Obeid's diaries, recently tendered at the inquiry, paint an extraordinary picture of business dealings, including with a number of key business associates of the Obeid family.
Property developer Rocco Triulcio is shown to meet Mr Obeid regularly at a ''car wash'', at Latteria, a coffee shop in Darlinghurst, or, on one occasion, at a wharf in Cabarita.
ICAC has heard that Mr Triulcio used his accountant to disguise his purchase in 2008 of a Bylong property next to the Obeids before the government announced it would grant a coal exploration licence over the area.
The Obeids and Mr Triulcio also have property development projects in the Ryde area of Sydney.
The Obeids have denied having a secret share in the Elizabeth Bay marina but Mr Obeid's diaries reveal frequent meetings with the half owner of the marina, Michael Dalah. The other half is owned by the Obeids' family friend, real estate agent Joseph Georges, who has denied he is a ''front'' for the Obeids.
Mr Dalah also has a catering company, Laissez-Faire, which has secured a number of cafe leases in government buildings, including the State Library of NSW, the Australian Technology Park and at the Australian National Maritime Museum.
Mr Obeid's diary shows that in August 2007 he met Mr Dalah and solicitor Rob Hugh about the State
Library cafe. In early February 2008, Mr Obeid's diary records an 11am meeting with ''Steve Dunn/Dalah'' also about the State Library cafe.
Mr Dunn, who features regularly in Mr Obeid's diary, is the former chief executive of NSW Maritime. Mr Dunn later attended meetings with Mr Dalah and planning minister Tony Kelly in an attempt to develop a huge marina in picturesque Elizabeth Bay.
Premier Barry O'Farrell recently appointed Mr Dunn to conduct a review of the Game Council.
Mr Obeid's 2008 diary has an entry: ''Paul Dundon, Director Health Solutions - police, education, Corrective Services, dept community services''.
DHS, in which the Obeid family owned a secret stake, was paid $150,000 by the Education Department, $30,000 for a 15-day consultancy to the NSW Police, and almost $34,000 by Corrective Services for managing sick leave from 2005 until 2008.
''Joe/Kym Lennox'' is another diary entry. In August 2009 ports and waterways minister Joe Tripodi announced that Joe Elias' $2 company All Occasion Cruises had won the tender to build an 18-berth marina and a function centre and cafe at Blackwattle Bay, near the fish market.
It was Mr Obeid's son Eddie jnr who introduced his friend Joe Elias, who ran a floating male strip club, to Mr Lennox, a former government bureaucrat who became the project manager for the bid.
Although an external panel recommended a two-stage tender process, Maritime's Mr Dunn dismissed all other bidders after the first stage and declared All Occasion Cruises the winner.
Other diary entries show Mr Obeid meeting with Tony Imad, from whom the Obeids had earlier purchased three cafes at Circular Quay.