PNG corruption exposed in Australian sting

2:24 pm on 24 June 2015

Australia has been exposed as a safe haven for corrupt funds from Papua New Guinea with lawyers caught on video explaining how to deposit stolen money in Australian bank accounts.

Fairfax Media has recordings of an undercover sting showing PNG lawyer, Harvey Maladina, explaining how a law firm and a well-known Australian Queen's counsel issue inflated invoices to conceal the movements of corrupt money.

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Photo: 123RF

His law firm partner, former Queensland crown prosecutor, Greg Sheppard, is shown on camera saying the "only way" to bribe foreign politicians and avoid getting caught is to pay "small dribs and drabs" disguised as commercial transactions.

The film opens a window into how Australian lawyers, accountants and migration agents enable corrupt politicians to shift stolen money into the relative safety of Australian bank accounts and real estate.

Both Mr Sheppard and Mr Maladina are considered to be close to the PNG Prime Minister Peter O'Neill and senior members of his government.

Fairfax says until January Mr Sheppard was a director of the company providing security to the Australian run and funded Manus Islands asylum seeker detention centre.