Saturday, 15 December 2012 16:17
The son of Labor powerbroker Eddie Obeid accused people of "playing games" on a multimillion-dollar coal deal in a secretly taped phone call to a mate of former NSW energy minister Ian Macdonald, a corruption inquiry has heard.
The Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC) on Friday heard an intercepted phone call between Moses Obeid and Greg Jones, a friend of then mines and energy minister Ian Macdonald, who is at the centre of a corruption inquiry into the granting of coal licences in the NSW Upper Hunter.
The May 2011 call was made after investors in Cascade Coal had struck a deal promising the Obeids $60 million to get out of their mining venture in the Bylong Valley, but the Obeids received only $30 million.
In the call, Moses Obeid says to Mr Jones, "From where we're sitting it looks like someone's f***ing playing games".
Mr Jones, who had a secret shareholding in Cascade, says, "You're missing the whole f***ing point. I don't think you have any idea what we've been through."
The ICAC has heard that a $30 million payment was made to the Obeids from the bank account of Cascade investor Richard Poole's wife, Amanda.
The Obeids are still pressing Cascade investors for the remaining $30 million, the inquiry has heard.
In another taped phone call from May last year, Mr Jones says he has just had a "bloody big blue" with the Obeids, before going on to describe them as "paranoid idiots" and "off with the f***ing pixies".
The ICAC also heard a taped phone call from April 2011 between Mr Poole and Mr Jones, soon after a $500 million deal for White Energy to purchase Cascade fell over and a new buyer was being sought for Cascade.
In that call, Mr Jones calls himself a "free moving spirit", before telling Mr Poole to "do what you think" and then "we'll have a look at it".
Poole replies, "I've made some wild assumptions, but we want money fast and we don't give a f**k how we get there."
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