Throughout 2014 IBAC investigators recorded conversations in the family home of Nino Napoli, Victorian Education Department's financial management general manager.
IBAC : School principal tried to coerce anti-corruption witness to lie, hearing told , Guy Stayner, ABC News, 30 April 2015.
John Allman, Regional director for the Victorian Education Department's southeast, was visited by the IBAC at his home.
Then - "in a fit of rage, upset and trauma after the IBAC visit to my home," Mr Allman dumped torn documents from "banker" school Silverton Primary in a Bunnings bin.
Vic education inquiry claims second scalp , Caitlin Guilfoyle, newscomau, 29 April 2015
Public examinations into alleged serious corruption at the Department of Education and Training (DET) will be held by the Victorian anti-corruption commission from 27 April 2015.
The IBAC examinations will focus on :
* The alleged involvement of current and former DET staff in the esetablishment of 'banker schools', the allocation of funds to schools for goods and services that were not always provided, and the misuse of department funds.
* whether DET staff (or their associates), and school principals and business managers received financial or other benefits as a result.
* the family and business connections between current and former VET staff (or their associates), school principals and business managers, and the suppliers of goods and services.
* DET systems and procedures around procurement, financial management and allocation of funding and the awarding of contracts.
Hearings will start on Monday 27 April 2015 at the County Court of Victoria from 10am each business day.
They will be open to the public.
The examinations are part of a number of on-going investigations into alleged serious corruption at the Department of Education and Training.
Anyone with relevant information is encouraged to contact IBAC on 1300 735 135.
More than 60 witnesses are expected to be questioned by the IBAC over the next six weeks.
Counsel assisting, Ian Hill QC, alleged that -
* 17 companies linked to Victorian Education Department financial management general manager Nino Napoli and nine of his relatives received more than $2.5 million from Victorian schools between 2007 and 2014.
* School funding was allowed to a number of "banker" schools, which paid invoices from companies linked to Mr Napoli - even if the school had not received goods or services.
It appeared that some principals and business managers at the "banker" schools either suspected or knew that the payments were not above board.
"There is some evidence that certain principals and business managers received bonuses including invitations to conferences overseas and domestic travel as well as other benefits related to their school's participation."
* A similar technique was used for some expenses by department heads -
Brighton Primary School was invoiced $4385 for a Christmas party in 2008.
A $4587 bill for a home office for former department assistant general manager Jeff Rosewarne was sent to Moonee Ponds West Primary School in 2009.
A $5000 bill for Mr Rosewarne's 50th birthday party was invoiced to Mr Napoli's company and education department contractor Encino Pty Ltd.
Schools allegedly involved -
Moonee Ponds West PS
Kings Park PS
John Fawkner College
Jeff Rosewarne, former Victorian Education Department assistant general manager, was the first witness to be questioned by the IBAC.
Mr Rosewarne told the IBAC hearing that he had been short of cash at the time of his 50th birthday party, despite earning almost $200,000 a year.
Mr Rosewarne said he had asked Mr Napoli for a loan, but he couldn't recall much detail.
Nino Napoli's sacking was announced.
Vic Ed Dept chief sacked over IBAC inquiry , Melissa Meehan, 27 April 2015, 7 News.
Vic education inquiry claims second scalp , Caitlin Guilfoyle, newscamau. 29 April 2015
Peter Paul is the principal of Chandler Park Primary School.
On Tuesday 28 April the IBAC hearing was told that Mr Paul's son, a wine merchant, supplied more than $7000 worth of Italian wine to former department assistant general manager Jeff Rosewarne.
Mr Rosewarne told the IBAC that Mr Paul offered up his son's business to supply the wine, which Mr Rosewarne said was for departmental functions and stakeholder gifts.
The wine was billed to Chandler Park Primary School but shipped to Mr Rosewarne's home.
Peter Paul was told late on Tuesday 28 April that an investigation into his conduct was underway and he was suspended pending the investigation's outcome.
IBAC suspends principal amid hearing , Caitlin Guilfoyle, 9News.com.au, 29 April 2015
John Allman, Regional director for Victorian Education Department's southeast, admitted dumping torn documents from "banker school" Silverton Primary in a Bunnings bin after an IBAC visit to his home.
Mr Allman was sacked a few hours later.
Victorian Education Department's financial management general manager Nino Napoli's son Raffaele told the hearing his father had asked him to lie about $75 000 that had trickled into his bank account as "wages" from his aunt's business from 2007 to 2011.
Mr Allman confirmed Mr Napoli transferred money at his request - hundreds of thousands of dollars over time - from central department funds to Silverton Primary School in an attempt to hide it from "government processes".
Mr Allman denied using the money for personal gain, stating the money was used for school or department -related projects or functions.
Vic education inquiry claims second scalp , Caitlin Guilfoyle, newscomau, 29 April 2015
On Thursday 30 April Ralph Napoli, the son of former Victorian Education Department financial management general manager Nino Napoli, today testified his father and Mick Giulieri, the current principal of Keilor Heights Primary School, tried to convince him to perjure himself.
The hearing was played IBAC audio recordings of conversations in the Napoli family home.
On several occasions Mr Giulieri can be heard trying to concoct a plausible story to explain why Ralph Napoli would have been paid $120,000, mostly for work he had never done at Essendon North Primary School.
Mr Giulieri had been the principal at Essenden North Primary School when the false payments were made into Ralph Napoli's account.
Mr Giulieri said he could justify the payments by telling investigators Ralph Napoli's sporting knowledge was used to help create physical education manuals at the school.
Nino Naploi was heard on tape saying "that's the only little porkie that you've got to tell ... that you met Mick".
"if you say yes and I say no and he says yes, we are all over the shop," said Mr Giulieri.
Ralph Napoli was heard saying "there's so many question marks, so many holes, dad".
When his brother tells him to "chill mate", he responds : "How can you tell me to chill mate when it's one big f-king lie."
Ralph Napoli told the hearing : "I got angry a lot of time Commissioner, about what dad was trying to do here."
Counsel assisting IBAC, Ian Hill QC, said the two men were trying to brainwash Ralph Napoli into believing their lie.
Ralph Napoli agreed.
IBAC: School principal tried to coerce anti-corruption witness to lie, hearing told, Guy Stayner, ABC News, 30 April 2015
A Victorian Auditor-General's report into student ability, teacher performance, school infrastructure, etc. from 2009 to 2014 has found the Victorian Education Department is riddled with a "depressing pattern of underperformance" and plagued by a defensive and complacent culture.
27 audits over five years reveal persistent failures in the Victorian education system.
But underperformance has been rewarded.
47 executive officers received bonuses that totalled $458 412, an average of almost $10,000 each, even though they had not completed performance assessments.
Standards in subjects including science, arts, history and information technology had declined.
In other areas, such as literacy and numeracy, there had been no significant change.
Following its investigation into the abuse of 'banker schools' in Victoria's Department of Education and Training (DET), the Independent Broad-Based Anti-corruption Commission (IBAC) has made six recommendations.
'Operation Ord' began in 2013.
Public examinations were held between April and June 2015.
The investigation examined allegations concerning -
* The involvement of DET staff in the establishment of 'banker schools'.
* The allocation of funds to schools for good and services that were not always provided.
* The misuse of department funds.
* Whether DET staff , school principals and business managers received financial or other benefits as a result.
* The family and business connections between current and former DETE staff, school principals and business managers, and the suppliers of goods and services.
* DET systems and practices around procurement, financial management and allocation of funding and the awarding of contracts.
Approximately 30 Victorian state primary and secondary schools appear to have acted as ad hoc banker schools to varying degrees, to hold funds never intended for expenditure on individual school needs and to pay invoices from those funds for activities completely unrelated to the school.
Network of senior staff.
Former Director Nino Naploi exploited lax controls around the department's banker school system to secure payments for false and inflated invoices, or inappropriate expenses such as excessive hospitality, travel and personal items.
Other senior departmental executives were at times involved, including former Acting Secretary Jeffrey Rosewarne.
The abuse of the system was generally accepted and enabled by a number of school principals and business managers, in some cases in return for personal benefits such as overseas travel or promotion.
Napoli family and associates.
The investigation identified 20 companies and businesses and nine relatives of Mr Napoli potentially involved in the invoicing.
Between 2007 and 2014, it is estimated :
* at least $1.9 million in profits through apparent corrupt conduct went to Mr Napoli, his relatives and associates.
* a further $3.3 million worth of tainted contracts awarded by Mr Naploi have also been identified.
* an additional $1.1 million worth of suspicious transactions involving entities associated with Mr Napoli have been identified prior to 2007.
It is likely these figures are much higher and detailed financial analysis is continuing.
Flawed systems and culture.
The investigation identified substantial weaknesses in DET's systems, controls and culture.
These weaknesses created an environment where misconduct and corrupt conduct were able to flourish.
The weaknesses included -
* a general failure of procurement controls - for example, staff failed to check if goods were received, purchase orders were not raised, incomplete invoices were approved, and a widespread lack of accountability, with payments for hospitality, alcohol and gifts being approved without question.
* poor financial management and a failure of auditing to detect the misuse of school funds.
* a culture of non-compliance and entitlement, and bullying of individuals who raised concerns, and
* a failure of senior leadership to set the right tone from the top, model public sector values, and address the serious issues within the department.
IBAC has made six recommendations to DET, the Department of Premier and Cabinet and the Victorian Auditor-General.
DET is required to -
* report on a range of reforms and improvements aimed at preventing corruption and building an integrity culture.
* undertake a review to identify and audit any remaining banker schools.
* exclude people and entities whose behaviour has been found to be improper or corrupt from obtaining work with the Department or schools in the future.
Nino Napoli will appear in the Melbourne Magistrates Court in February 2017, along with his cousin Carlo Squillacioti, and former Keilor Heights Primary School principal Michael Giulieri.
Daniel Calleja, a distant cousin of Nino Napoli, will face court in March 2017.
One other person is facing charges.
Charges will include procurement related to dishonesty offences including -
* furnishing false information,
* dealing with the proceeds of crime,
* conspiracy to pervert the course of justice,
* conspiracy to defraud,
* and conspiracy to deal with the proceeds of crime.
A report released by the Independent Broad-based Anti-corruption Commission (IBAC) in 1916 identified at least $1.9 million in profits went to relatives and associates of Napoli.
It found a further $4.4 million in suspicious transactions and contracts went through the department's "banker school" system.
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