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Magistrate orders Peter Slipper to appear in court in May

Peter Slipper
Peter Slipper Warren Lynam

SUNSHINE Coast MP Peter Slipper has been ordered to appear in a Canberra court next month after a magistrate refused his request for the case to be adjourned again.

Mr Slipper had applied to be excused from attending the next hearing but the application was denied by magistrate Bernadette Boss.

Mr Slipper's legal team had sought a five week adjournment and did not enter any plea on Mr Slipper's behalf.

Ms Boss took the step of entering a not guilty plea on behalf of Mr Slipper to get the case moving after  previous adjournments.

A case management hearing has been set for May 23 at which Mr Slipper will be required to attend.

The Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions is finalising the brief of evidence against Mr Slipper.

The court heard it was still awaiting GPS and geospacial data in relation to the fraud allegations involving the MP's travel expenses.

Outside the court, Mr Slipper's lawyer Peter Russo refused to comment on questions as to why Mr Slipper did not want to appear in court or how he felt the hearing had gone today.

The allegations against Peter Slipper

The former LNP representative and ex-Speaker of the House of Representatives is alleged to have knowingly filled out false details on a series of Cabcharge vouchers relating to travel on three separate days in 2010 to hide from the Department of Finance and Administration the true nature of the expense incurred.

Court documents allege hat Mr Slipper had been repeatedly requested since 2006 by Parliamentary and Ministerial Services to use his Cabcharge card electronically because vouchers posed accountability and administration problems.

Despite that correspondence it will be alleged that on January 20, 2010, he used Cabcharge vouchers to pay the $337 cost to travel from Canberra to a number of wineries, a purpose not covered by his entitlements.

The Australian Federal Police have alleged he filled in and signed four Cabcharge dockets showing false information in each as to where the "trips" started and ended including false details for the amounts of the fares.

The AFP will allege he wrote dockets for trips from Parliament House to suburbs $87; from suburbs to Parliament House $80; from suburbs to suburbs $75; and from suburbs to suburbs $95.

It is alleged the details were false and Mr Slipper knew them to be so.

Topics:  court, peter slipper


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