Ex-MP Maguire charged over visa scheme

November 29, 2022 01:53 PM AEDT | By AAPNEWS
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Former MP Daryl Maguire has been charged with criminal conspiracy over an alleged visa fraud underway while he was sitting in the NSW parliament.

The former Wagga MP, who resigned after an anti-corruption inquiry and later had his secret romantic relationship with former premier Gladys Berejiklian exposed, allegedly conspired with migration agent Maggie Sining Logan to breach the migration act between January 2013 and August 2015.

He faces prison time or a maximum fine of $34,000.

The case was heard in Sydney's Downing Centre Local Court for the first time on Tuesday. Maguire, 63, has not yet entered a plea. His lawyer has been contacted for comment.

There is no suggestion Ms Berejiklian was involved. She has not been implicated in the various schemes of Maguire's that were uncovered by the NSW Independent Commission Against Corruption.

Maguire is on conditional bail requiring him to surrender his passport, live in Wagga Wagga unless he otherwise advises police and not contact certain people including prosecution witnesses.

He must notify Border Force if he intends to travel overnight to a regional centre in the state's far west.

The case will return to court on February 7.

Maguire was charged on November 7, three days after Border Force officials charged Logan.

Federal prosecutors allege Maguire conspired with the Cremorne Point woman to have false or misleading documents provided to the federal government, in connection with non-citizens' visa applications.

Logan, formerly known as Maggie Wang and aged 53, is accused of breaching the migration act 12 times between January 2013 and May 2015 by causing those documents to be provided.

"As these matters remain subject to legal proceedings, it would not be appropriate to comment further," Border Force told AAP in a statement.

While compelled to give truthful evidence at ICAC, Maguire admitted to using his position as an MP, parliamentary secretary and NSW Asia-Pacific parliamentary friendship group chair "with a view to making money" for himself and his associates between 2012 and 2018.

He told the commission he played a role in a visa scheme linked to G8way identifying businesses that could sponsor Chinese nationals.

Visa applicants paid the first three months of their wages and paid Logan commissions of up to $20,000, the inquiry was told.

On more than one occasion, Maguire said he accepted delivery of thousands of dollars of cash to his parliamentary office to allow him to take his cut.

Under pressure, he later resigned from parliament, ending his 19-year reign as the member for Wagga.

The investigation into Maguire, dubbed Operation Keppel, eventually led to Ms Berejiklian sensationally revealing the pair had been in a clandestine relationship for about five years, describing Mr Maguire as being part of her "love circle".

She later chose to resign as premier after ICAC announced it would investigate her for potential breaches of public trust.

A final report on that investigation is yet to be released.


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