The former boss of Queensland’s largest public hospital service has returned to Australia to face corruption charges in relation to an alleged nepotism scandal more than seven years ago.
Malcolm Frederick Stamp, who was the chief executive of Metro North Health and Hospital Service (MNHHS) between 2013 and 2014, appeared in the Brisbane Magistrates Court today for the first time since being charged by the Crime and Corruption Commission (CCC).
The CCC alleged in 2014 Mr Stamp dishonestly arranged for his daughter, Katy Stamp, to be given a media and communication services job with an annual salary of $80,000.
It is alleged this was facilitated by another executive, via a taxpayer-funded contract with a MNHHS consultant.
He then allegedly tried to cover it up with false documents.
Mr Stamp was sacked from his role in early 2015 after an internal investigation, and he returned to the UK where he has remained.
He is now facing a committal hearing in Brisbane to determine whether there is enough evidence for him to stand trial on three charges, including corruptly soliciting valuable consideration to influence favour.
Former colleague grilled by lawyers
Scott McCullen, who was the executive director of corporate services for Metro North and directly reported to Mr Stamp at the time, was the first witness to be called.
The court was told he had been involved in creating a position for Ms Stamp and had already been convicted and received a discounted sentence for agreeing to give evidence against Mr Stamp.
Under cross examination Mr McCullen was grilled by Mr Stamp’s lawyer for giving different versions of events to investigators and was accused of lying about his boss’ alleged involvement in the recruitment.
“I had discussed it with Malcolm in regard to Katy getting a role,” he told the court.
Mr McCullen did admit he had misled investigators in his original statement, compared to what he later told the CCC, but claimed “it wasn’t all lies”.
When asked what he was not originally truthful about, he said: “The timeline of the recruitment of Malcolm’s daughter, the process and the variation.”
The court was also played a number of secretly recorded calls between Mr McCullen and other people, where he discussed the initial investigation after he had been placed on leave with pay.
In the calls, Mr McCullen claimed the allegations against him and Mr Stamp were “all bullshit” and blamed another executive for not doing their job properly and lying.
“How have we influenced them to employ Malcolm’s daughter?” he said in one of the calls.
The court heard when Mr McCullen was later interviewed by the CCC he made a number of serious misconduct accusations against Mr Stamp and other executives at MNHHS, but only Mr Stamp was looked into.
The hearing, which is set down for more than a week, continues.