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You are here: Home News and media CMC media releases CMC restrains $12m worth of assets in alleged Queensland Health fraud case — 18.01.2012
You are here: Home News and media CMC media releases CMC restrains $12m worth of assets in alleged Queensland Health fraud case — 18.01.2012
You are here: Home News and media CMC media releases CMC restrains $12m worth of assets in alleged Queensland Health fraud case — 18.01.2012

CMC restrains $12m worth of assets in alleged Queensland Health fraud case — 18.01.2012

The Crime and Misconduct Commission’s (CMC) Proceeds of Crime team has restrained assets valued at approximately $12 million in a civil confiscation case against former Queensland Health employee, Hohepa Hikairo Morehu-Barlow.

CMC Acting Director Financial Investigations David Goody says the CMC has obtained several Supreme Court restraining orders over a substantial list of assets identified in the case since 9 December 2011. The fifth order was obtained today.

‘In this case, we have worked in close collaboration with the Queensland Police Service’s (QPS) Fraud and Corporate Crime Group to identify and restrain assets that include a New Farm property, accounts with several banks, cars, art works and other items including jet skis, furniture and a piano,’ Mr Goody said.

‘The Public Trustee of Queensland has taken possession of all assets restrained to date and the CMC will ultimately seek to forfeit them to the state.’  

‘This is a complex case and should other assets come to light, we will continue to work on behalf of the state to seek relevant restraining orders.’

Under the Criminal Proceeds Confiscation Act 2002, the CMC has responsibility to administer the state’s non-conviction-based civil confiscation scheme. The Act gives the CMC the power to restrain property regardless of whether or not a person has been charged with an offence.

Mr Goody said the CMC worked closely with the QPS and the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions in identifying and litigating proceeds of crime matters, as well as with the Public Trustee of Queensland, responsible for property restrained and held by the state.

He said confiscation proceedings under the Criminal Proceeds Confiscation Act 2002 were civil proceedings conducted in the Supreme Court, with issues of fact decided on the balance of probabilities.

He added that a respondent or innocent third party may seek to exclude from forfeiture any property shown to have been legally acquired.  

In the alleged Queensland Health fraud case, the CMC first received a QPS request for assistance on 9 December 2011 and moved to restrain assets the same day.

Mr Morehu-Barlow was arrested on 12 December 2011 and charged with fraud the following day. As the matter is currently before the courts, it is not appropriate for the CMC to comment further.

In the past financial year (2010-11), the CMC’s proceeds of crime team set a new annual record. As a result of their efforts, $9.3 million worth of criminally derived assets were returned to the state – the highest annual total in the CMC’s history, almost doubling the former record of $5.5 million, set the previous year.

Since 2003, when the Criminal Proceeds Confiscation Act 2002 came into force, the CMC has returned $36 million to the state and restrained $142 million worth of property.

See proceeds of crime statistics.

Last updated: 14 December 2012
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