Ray Williams cleared over political donations scandal

MOVING FORWARD: Castle Hill MP Ray Williams no longer has the political donations scandal hanging over his head..

MOVING FORWARD: Castle Hill MP Ray Williams no longer has the political donations scandal hanging over his head..

CASTLE Hill MP Ray Williams says he is looking forward to continuing his work for the electorate after his name was cleared by the NSW Electoral Commission.

The commission investigated allegations that Mr Williams collected or accepted illegal donations from property developers.

The allegations were published by News Corp in February 2017, just weeks after Mr Williams had been promoted to Minister for Multiculturalism and Disability Services. 

Mr Williams said he is looking forward to moving on from the scandal. 

“I welcome today’s findings by the NSW Electoral Commission clearing my name,” Mr Williams said.

“I take my responsibilities in government very seriously and have always acted with the highest level of integrity.

“I look forward to continuing to represent the electorate of Castle Hill and getting on with the job for the people of NSW.”

NSW Electoral Commission chairperson Keith Mason released the findings, confirming Mr Williams had not breached the 1981 Election Funding, Expenditure and Disclosures Act.

“The Commission has not found any evidence that Mr Williams committed an offence under the Act,” Mr Mason stated.

“Donations made to the Liberal Party by seven individuals were examined as part of this investigation.

“Four of these individuals were found not to have been property developers, as defined by the Act, at the time of making their donations.

“In relation to the remaining three individuals whom the Commission considers were property developers at the time of making their donations: 

  • One donation was returned by the Liberal Party to the relevant individual in the same year in which it was made.
  • An amount equal to the donation made by one individual had previously been recovered by the Commission from the Liberal Party.
  • Legal action in relation to the donation by one individual was statute barred. When that donation was made the Act required any proceedings to be instituted within three years of the alleged offence (following amendments made to the Act in 2014 the time limit for instituting such proceedings has been increased to 10 years). 

“The Commission has now concluded its investigation in relation to this matter and, in light of the above, no further action is proposed.”