New South Wales state MP Glenn Brookes moves to crossbench over electoral allegations

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Thursday, March 24, 2016

New South Wales, Australia member of state parliament for East Hills Glenn Brookes confirmed on Monday he has moved to the cross bench — distancing himself from his party — following a March 17 charge served on his former campaign manager Jim Daniels for electoral crimes.

Jim Daniels is alleged to be behind the campaign that labelled Labor candidate Cameron Murphy a "paedophile lover" by placing stickers on his election signs and distributing pamphlets around the electorate. Bankstown councilor Jim Daniels is to face court over the allegations in May.

Mr Brookes, who won the marginal State seat by a slender margin, said "I am shocked and horrified by the allegations made against my former staff member Jim Daniel[...] These allegations come as a surprise to me and I was not aware of the alleged behaviour at the time". Mr Brookes has told New South Wales Premier Mike Baird, by Baird's account, that he had no involvement.

The Honourable Lynda Voltz named Jim Daniels as the person behind the smear campaign in May 2015 according to The Sydney Morning Herald. Ms Voltz spoke in parliament about the campaign on June 25, 2015 regarding further alleged breaches by Mr Daniels saying AU$5,000 was donated to the Australian Multicultural Christian Society Incorporated [AMCSI] for the purchase of a bus. "Yet according to the Federal Government's charity register annual report, the AMCSI had total expenses of $1,574 for the financial year 2013–14. The $5,000 for the bus purchase never seems to have been spent", said Ms Voltz.

The Daily Telegraph reported in April 2015 that Mr Murphy, an Order of Australia recipient and former president of the New South Wales Council for Civil Liberties, had no criminal record and expressed fears to the Telegraph of the effect the accusations against him could have on his young son.

Mr. Murphy has declined to comment on the recent developments, citing legal considerations.