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The Magpie

Saturday, December 4th, 2021   |   108 comments

THE MAGNIS MESS: Magnis Energy Admits Lansdown Factory Not Happening Anytime Soon, If At All:  CEO Poullas Linked To  The International Drug Smuggler. The Ring Is Tightening … And Probably The Mayor’s Is, Too.

Jenny’s F Troop leadership at it brilliant best  …  now we’ve got a drug dealer involved with her pin up boy!!!  So the Magnis unicorn battery factory at the Hub in the Scrub looks likely to join the Adani Airstrip, the ‘impossible’ $2million coffee shop on Castle Hill and the now-not-the-right-time ‘light forest’ walkway to the stadium et al in the F file …. The Magpie will politely suggest that is the Failure File. We need to know what she knew, and when she knew it.

Timid toe dippers in the mayoral pool always ask ’Can she be beaten?’ It’s the wrong question, Jenny Hill doesn’t need to be beaten … The ‘Pie has a not so silly solution.

The ‘ten green bottles’ singalong is ringing around the Astonisher newsroom yet again …  News Ltd‘s Townsville stepping stone sees another (very promising editor) heading off. Good luck to the likeable Craig warhurst, but tough shit about Townsville. We wait in dread for the new name … there is one we definitely don’t want to hear.

The patronising hokum about free two hour parking in the CBD for Christmas … this council is both desperate and insultingly stupid. But the mugs love it.

Your weekly ad:  The ‘Pie hopes appreciative readers won’t think small and trusts you  will be overwhelmed by the bonhomie of Christmas and help out with blog costs – which do not stop for festive holidays – or anything else at any time. If you’re of a mind to play secret Santa with The ‘Pie, the donation button is at the bottom of the blog.

Now onward

But Will His Sleigh Still Be Where He Parked It When He Leaves?

Although they make every night Christmas night for themselves year round, Townsville’s population of juvenile pricks will be in for their cut of the free goodies when Santa drops by.  Bentley knows exactly what their wish list will be.

Santa 's list flat small

But given the widely reported elf shortage due to COVID, Santa will not have someone to keep an eye on his sleigh and reindeer when he visits Townsville shopping centres.  So the odds are that Santa will discover his reindeer and sleigh are nowhere to be found when he goes to move on. The coppers will no doubt find it crashed and burnt out in a bush ditch, and the reindeer nowhere to be found. But a note left at the seen read ‘Fanx fur the venison.’

There’ll be some fun facts about Santa’s reindeer a little later, after we get through the serious stuff.

And It Doesn’t Get Much More Serious Than This

The Magpie japes around a lot in this blog, but this is really serious shit that has emerged during the week about Magnis Energy and its CEO Frank Poullas. He’s been linked to an alleged international drug smuggler and been caught out lying about it, denying the company had any contact with the man until incriminating emails were unearthed by  investigating reporting in The Australian.

And even today, that paper has revealed that Magnis commissioned and paid for a glowing report from a financial analysist which they tried to pass of as independent financial reporting.

So surely the time has come for Mayor Jenny Hill to come clean about the future f the proposed battery plant, which as you will see, even Magnis doesn’t think is going to happen in the time frame they have been spruiking. She must now be upfront about what deals she has done with them and how much she has put aside of ratepayers money for this private fixation.  Madam, your silly prattle about ‘Still negotiating in good faith with Imperium3 in New York ‘just doesn’t wash, because Magnis has a controlling 63% in Imp3.

Here’s how the week unfolded, after the Australian previously revealed that the ASXregulators were looking at Poullas’s activities.

The Magpie

December 2, 2021 at 10:38 am  (Edit)

Holy smoke, this changes the whole game!! Poullas lied about not having any contact with international drug smuggler. The latest in what must surely be an award winning series for investigative journalism, led by this bloke.

Screen Shot 2021-12-02 at 10.27.46 am

This a long read but it’s important. Vital perhaps for Townsville.

From today’s Australian.


    JOURNALIST The Australian
  • 11:00PM DECEMBER 1, 2021
    Magnis Energy executive chairman Frank Poullas had dealings with alleged drug smuggling kingpin Hakan Arif, text message correspondence obtained by The Australian suggests.
    The leaked messages, sent on the WhatsApp platform in 2018, contradict assertions from the company that it never had “any engagement” with the alleged criminal – who remains wanted by Australian authorities.
    In one message sent in December 2018, Mr Poullas wrote: “Hakan and Erdal have asked for (then Magnis chief executive) Frank Houllis and I to attend.”
    In another, discussing a proposed deal with the Turkish government, he writes: “Make sure the agreement talks about 15GWh, funding studies and engineering and the government will provide the land … I’m sure Hakan has it all worked out.”
    The Australian on Monday reported that senior employees had raised concerns about Arif’s possible engagement with Magnis, while one director – ex-Macquarie executive Warwick Smith – had quit the board partly due to his worry about Arif’s presence.
    Arif was named in Dubai court documents as the leader of a drug-smuggling ring allegedly attempting to ship hundreds of millions of dollars in cocaine, ecstasy and methamphetamine to Australia, and is a priority target for the Australian Criminal Intelligence Commission. He is ¬believed to be in Turkey.
    Magnis, in an ASX statement released on Monday, said the -assertions in The Australian’s report were false. “Magins (sic) has never had any engagement with Mr Arif and has never made any payment to him,” it reads.
    A Magnis spokesman said it was difficult to search old records, but added that the company had “not at any stage made any investments … or paid any persons in Turkey to review or facilitate investment introductions”. “The company never engaged Hakan Arif and thus has no relationship with him nor is it in contact with him today,” he said.
    Magnis began considering the possibility of opening an electric batteries plant in Turkey in 2017. Mr Bez joined the company as it considered that proposal.
    The Australian is not suggesting Mr Poullas engaged in any criminal activity, only that he was in contact with Arif. The project in Turkey did not proceed.
    In another WhatsApp group that included Mr Houllis and other executives, a sender named “Hakan Afri” writes: “I think a draft is a good start … Basically Turkey is giving us what we need but will discuss which partners an (sic) what investment an (sic) know how will be contributed.”
    Mr Houllis confirmed to The Australian on Wednesday that he had travelled to Turkey and met someone “but he didn’t go by the name of Hakan”. “The meetings there were meeting things like the equivalent of Telstra, the government people, and university people,” Mr Houllis said.
    “I didn’t concern myself with a lot of stuff Frank Poullas done.”
    “There was a guy in track pants we met. The guy in track pants was Australian.”

Another former Magnis director, Ulrich Bez, told The Australian he had left after discovering the links with Arif. “I left Magnis … as I did not want to be involved in a company with close contact to drugs,” Mr Bez, the long-time chief executive of Aston Martin until 2013, said.
Magnis director Peter Tsegas has previously confirmed he met Arif, although he says it was on only one occasion.
“I met him once … I know a lot of Turkish people, I do a lot of work with the Turkish embassy,” Mr Tsegas told The Australian late last month.
Magnis has a controlling interest in Imperium3, a company building a battery plant in New York, and a smaller holding in the company that owns the patents underpinning the technology.
It has also advanced plans to build a batteries plant in Townsville with the assistance of former Macquarie executive Bill Moss.
Magnis shares fell 5 per cent on Wednesday to close at 48c – they are now down more than 14 per cent in the last five days.
But the company has enjoyed support from investors, with the stock rising 153 per cent this year.
The company told the ASX earlier this year that it was expecting revenues from Imperium3 to reach $80m in 2022, before rising to $1.8bn by 2027.

Burning local questions are arising. By association and at best, could Jenny and Townsville have been duped into becoming a focal point for drug importation?

And the share rise of 154% over the past year, with not a single KPI in sight or product produced leads to another question which The Australian seems to be hinting at … drug money propping up the company to be a front for the operation

But Like The Steak Knife Man oN TV Said, Wait, There’s More!

And today, Saturday, the Weekend Oz took a turn at sticking in a well deserved boot. In a column piece titled Under The Boot, the paper reported on the unethical behaviour of an equities analyst named Di Brookman, who now infests the offices of ‘independent investment research house ‘ Corporate Connect. During the week, Brookman wrote a piece for investors that painted a glowing picture of Magnis Energy, estimating it would ‘triple its market value within a year’, but light on facts and analysis to back this up.

If it sounds like the dishonest guff we’ve been getting from Magnis all along, that’s because this is exactly that … a fine print note explained that Magnis had commissioned Brookman to write the report. Gosh, how independent can you get? But hey, but not to worry, wheel in your barrow loads of cash on the info, because Ms Brookman added ‘No part of the fee, compensation, or employee remuneration paid will either directly or indirectly impact the content (of the report).’ 


Good heavens, of course not, dear. The Magpie understands you have a harbour bridge up for time sharing, if anyone is interested – and who wouldn’t be, eh?

And the real sting in the tail of the Australian column piece today was right at the end … yep, the bit where Magnis itself says Townsville ain’t gunna happen any time soon  -if at all.


The Questions Mayor Jenny Hill Must Address

Jenny Hill ad1a24a086aefd84ca1555de849c266f

No half embarrassing for our mayor … if she is capable of being shame faced.

Poullas lied about not having any contact with international drug smuggler.  So now the burning local question is simply this:  by association and at best, could Jenny and Townsville have been duped into becoming a focal point for drug importation but for these revelations?

Long bow? Not really. Consider that inexplicable share rise of 154% over the past year, with not a single KPI in sight or product produced which leads to another question which The Australian seems to be hinting at … drug money propping up the company to be a front for the operation?

One very simple question the mayor may have the good grace to answer for the ratepayers – who approached who all those years ago to kick off this saga? Was she approached, or vice versa?  And if she was approached, on what terms? And where to now? You won’t be doing us a favour by answering, Mrs Hill, you are duty bound to inform us in this matter.

The fat lady hasn’t even gargled the throat on this one yet, long way to go.

How To Beat Jenny Hill. Even If She Wins Another Term

The ‘Pie has had several conversations with a number of people in the past few years, people who were timidly wondering if they should have a shot at the mayoralty. All have been eminently qualified, but have all been cowed into a mind set that has served Mayor Mullet well. Every one of those people have asked The ‘Pie ‘But can she be beaten?’   And every single one asked that question because they all feared reprisals in business if they dared stand against her and then lose, such is the very vindictive political streak of the woman.

But that is the wrong question. It presupposes a two or three horse race (Jenny always slips in a hopeless candidate to suck away some votes from the real opponent.) And has always involved the tricky and complex consideration of an opposition ‘team’.

But the advent of Clr Fran O’Callaghan has shown how the daft and irresponsible excesses and executive staff stacking of this mayor can be reined in. The Townsville electorate could find itself more equitably and responsibly represented if each division had a true independent standing. Not members of a team  – beyond the common goal of more responsible governance –  just local person of honest standing who simply promises two things: true representation of the division with no politically motivated leader giving voting directions on how to vote;  and all agree to reform the culture of excessive secrecy and institute transparent fiscal responsibility.

When you see the almost frantic tizz Mayor Mullet gets into when Fran asks a simple and reasonable question, and ambitious storm troopers like Margie ‘Potty Mouth’ Ryder go the bully biff for her boss, just imagine what would happen if there were four or five true independents on the council.  The only common denominator with the independents is a desire for a return to basics in running services and reining back our rampant debt.

Let the Bulletin howl its lies about the city needing a united team like it did that when it backed Labor against Townsville First. They got their wish through chicanery, but The ‘Pie asks, ‘and how’s that working out for us, eh’?  But be ready for a massive scare campaign, directed in part by Holt Street in Sydney.

Time to take back the town?

Another Tampon Announcement From The Council  – There’s Always A  String Attached.
Screen Shot 2021-12-04 at 7.44.32 pm

Hey sounds good?  Well, think about it. The ‘Pie isn’t playing the Christmas grinch here, but how about we let reality intrude on what he reckons this an empty ‘look good’ gesture. Which could well turn out to be expensive for the punter. Clr Potty Mouth Ryder can wax lyrical with as many lies as she likes, but this is just silly and pretty meaningless.

Media Release

Date published: 1 December 2021

Townsville City Council is giving you good Claus to do your Christmas shopping in the CBD with free two-hour parking in the city this December.

All two-hour parking spaces in the city centre will be free to park in this December with no ticket required, however the two-hour limit will still be enforced.

Business Services and Finance Committee chairperson Margie Ryder said Council was happy to bring the popular initiative back as a way to boost patronship in CBD stores this festive season.

Cr Ryder said drivers had to remember to stick to the two-hour limit.

”There’s no need to get a ticket when you park in the 2P spaces this December,” she said.

“Time limits will still be enforced, so don’t forget to set an alarm on your phone so you remember to move your car.”

First up, note that last line …. ‘move your car’.  Not ‘leave’, or ‘go home’ or just ‘piss off’, you’ve had your time’.

So come to the city, but have in the back of your mind that if you are so taken up with a leisurely Christmas shop, and maybe a meal and coffee with friends,  and forget to move your car to another spot, you’ll give the council a $31 Chrissy present.  You see, you can’t just pop another couple of bucks into the machine, you have to move it. And good luck finding another spot … for much of December, many 2 hour parking spots will be out of commission because of road closures for events and the like, but even on good days. – like between Christmas and d New Year when no oin e at all will be around –  you will be in competition with city workers who will take advantage of the offer and drive to work, ducking out every two hours to change spots, just like they used to.   And if you can’t find one, just go home, – or more likely go to a free parking, no – time – limit shopping centre.

On That Theme, The ‘Pie Sneaks One In On The Astonisher

The Magpie sometimes sends a comical comment into a Bulletin story  that amuses him, well knowing that it might raise a laugh for the moderator, but on orders from above, will never see the light of day. (The comment is under the name Malcolm).

Well, a first during the week. Not comical but a fair question – and it got through!Screen Shot 2021-11-30 at 10.50.17 pm Screen Shot 2021-11-30 at 10.52.07 pm


Craig Warhurst Screen Shot 2021-02-23 at 10.45.33 am

Departing Bulletin Editor Craig warhurst

So the not-so-merry-go-round continues, with Astonisher editor Craig Warhurst heading off to Tassie to fill the chair at the Mercury recently vacated by former TB editor Jenna Cairney (she’s joined the Tassie Premier’s media team).

The ‘Pie understands that Warhurst and his partner had bought a house in Yarrawonga last year, and had planned on being here for the long haul. But the way these things work in the pecking order of Rupertsworld, it was probably both a financial and career offer too good to turn down. Not that a refusal would have been an option. Ironically, for all his boosterism of the local property market, Craig and his partner had  bought a house in Yarrawonga for $950,000 just last October … weeks later, he’s on his way.

Interestingly, as an indication of the state of the Townsville real estate market, the folks he purchased from paid $975,000 in 2008 – so that’s a $25,000 drop in value over 14 years (plus $60,000 in agent fees and Stamp Duty) = $85,000 loss.

But more importantly, Townsville once again finds itself  at the mercy of the next person to graduate from the Murdoch Clown School.

Personally, The ‘Pie will be sorry to see Craig go … while the old bird always stayed on the Bulletin’s case – Christ, someone has to – Craig actually talked with The Magpie by email,  held his ground but was always polite, honest and tried to be constructive. Friendly even.

And he did some good things.

Whether those good moves towards a return to proper journalism are used as a platform to be built on, or we are back to square one as a community seen simply as a cash cow remains to be seen. But there is one name we can only hope is not on the replacement list … if anyone named Tomlinson gets the nod, give up all hope of things getting better at the Bulletin … or in Townsville.

Coincidence Or Conspiracy?

Well, it’s worth asking the question, when a regular reader pointed out the following regarding alleged sex offender John Starmer.

 John Starmer Screen Shot 2021-12-04 at 8.42.48 pm

His case was originally scheduled for further mention on 2nd November. Hello ! That was Melbourne Cup day, I thought at the time. No reports seen in the media.

The matter was then further remanded to  ….  Jan 26th. Hello ! That’s Australia day.

Is it just me? Seems too much of a coincidence. Is there some influence behind the scenes from the religious network to minimise reporting opportunities ?

Of course not.  Keep an eagle eye on this one.

Naughty Pope

A message to anti-vaxxers from David Pope in the Canberra Times.


But Smiko Is A Joy For The Pen People


Buggering Around On The Border

Coming into Queensland in a couple weeks might not be fun for those who don’t enjoy a little exotic recreational activity.


And From The Land That’s Lost Its Mind …

COVID remains a hot topic, courtesy of the new strain, there are conflicting views on Biden’s disputed fiscal success, and the ghost of Trumps Past haunts the country.

Screen Shot 2021-12-01 at 9.56.25 am Screen Shot 2021-12-01 at 9.56.04 am Screen Shot 2021-12-03 at 9.05.09 am Screen Shot 2021-12-04 at 8.25.59 am Screen Shot 2021-12-03 at 9.05.27 am Screen Shot 2021-12-03 at 12.02.01 am Screen Shot 2021-12-04 at 8.25.35 am Screen Shot 2021-12-03 at 9.05.56 am Screen Shot 2021-11-30 at 9.29.08 am Screen Shot 2021-11-30 at 9.31.12 am Screen Shot 2021-11-30 at 9.30.33 am Screen Shot 2021-11-30 at 8.36.26 am Screen Shot 2021-11-30 at 9.30.05 am Screen Shot 2021-11-30 at 9.28.34 am Screen Shot 2021-11-30 at 9.27.56 am Screen Shot 2021-12-04 at 8.25.00 am Screen Shot 2021-12-04 at 8.26.41 am

Yuletide Trivia

Was there a tenth reindeer?

Introduced by the 1823 American  poem ‘T’was the night before Christmas’, Santa started out with eight reindeer – Dasher, Dancer, Prancer, Vixen, Comet, Cupid, Donner, and Blitzen – the last two were originally named Dunder and Blixdem, but that changed over the years, possibly to avoid them being mistaken for local Townsville Labor MPs.

Over a century later, the world was introduced to the most famous reindeer of all, Rudolph.

Screen Shot 2021-12-04 at 11.20.36 pm

His distinctive red nose suggested he’d be right at home with Les Walker on a night out on the town, but it’s unlikely he hit the turps, because he was born in a 1939 children’s’ book by Robert L May and shot to stardom with Gene Autry’s famous song.

But fake news was about even then, and the telegraph wires (please explain that term to those under 30) were alive with rumours of a tenth reindeer, Olive. This was a classic ‘mondegreen’, the mishearing of song lyrics. When Autry warbled the line ‘all of the other reindeer’, many heard it as a nasty bit of work called Olive the other reindeer. But she never cemented a place in popular culture and is rarely heard of except in obscure blogs tapped out in the far reaches of North Queensland.

And Here’s Perhaps The Most Unsurprising Reindeer Factoid.   …

…they’re all gals!!! Well, of course, no bloke reindeer is going to leave the beer and telly to go hauling a dementedly jolly old pensioner high on free egg nog all over the place on Christmas night, sounds too much like hard work, and better left for the wimmin, eh? But in true academic fashion – and remember, these buggers get paid for this – an acadill and a boofademic in Scotland got together over the Glenfiddich one night and worked out the reindeer gender thing. Quite convincingly, as it turned out.

From the Syracuse.com site.

Are Santa’s Reindeer Female or Male?

Santa’s reindeer are typically portrayed as male in pop culture (Rudolph is referred to as a “him” in the song), but according to two professors at the University of Edinburgh, Santa’s reindeer are actually all female because male reindeer shed their antlers during the winter, while female reindeer retain their antlers, and Santa’s reindeer are always depicted with antlers. Male reindeer also lose nourishment and vitality during the winter months, so only the females are strong and healthy enough to pull a sleigh full of toys and a 260-lb. man.

Or silly enough to, some would say (but, no, no, not The Magpie, wouldn’t be game to say such a thing).


That’s it to next week. Want to blast The ‘Pie for something he’s said … comments run 24/7, get in for your chop. Oh, and that donate button you’re looking for is below.

The Magpie's Nest is now more than five years old, and remains an independent alternative voice for Townsville. The weekly warble is a labour of love and takes a lot of time to put together. So if you like your weekly load of old cobblers, you can help keep it aloft with a donation, or even a regular voluntary subscription. Paypal is at the ready, it's as easy as ... well, easy as pie. Limited advertising space is also available.


  1. Mike Douglas says:

    Another great blog Pie . Magnis , owning airports , claims Councillors were misled , $79 mil lumped on ratepayers for Haughton stage 2 ( commercial in confidence ) but ratepayers should have known ? , crime , lowest increase in regional residential value , most investors cashing up their rentals at a loss but just happy to get out , rates and Council debt heading to half a bil . Do you really think the Mayor will run again because even her own party seems to have turned against her and the City . Albos $275 bil 43 % renewables target and after 3 years families may save $275 . Labors modelling needs lots of scrutiny because if Chris Bowen ( imputation credits , negative gearing failures last election ) ” If you dont like our Policies dont vote for us is involved expect mistakes . John Ring Labors Herbert candidate seems to be floundering and i dont think doing media with Labors FIFO Cairns Senator rolling out election promises is helping . The last Labor member for Herbert claimed crime was a major reason the seat was lost even though its a State issue .

  2. Upagumtreeperson says:

    Another excellent editorial Magpie. You should be the permanent editor of the Daily Astonisher. Good old-fashioned journalism with solidly trained journoes just like the old days. I am horrified when I see and hear young kids mascerading as journalist with terrible vocal delivery. I think unis just get them through and out the door. Bring back the old system of cadet reporters. I recommend Elliot Hannay’s ” THE COLT WITH NO REGRETS’ as standard reading for journalism students. Old world knowledge beats new world crap anytime. Would be a great Chrissy gift.

    • The Magpie says:

      Flattering and thanks, but the most telling ‘old style’ investigative journalism in this week’s blog belongs to the crew at the Australian, whose Magnis series must surely win a Walkley. The ‘Pie, always loath to lift other people’s work even with attribution, just re-printed it and only then, because of its importance to this community.

    • Elliot says:

      Thanks for the plug.. much feedback from old hands but younguns only interested in whats being posted now on dodgy websites and illinformed comment being published and broadcast in mainstream media.. both left and right.. no such thing anymore as lessons from the past.

  3. NQ Gal says:

    Mayor Mullet is desperate for a legacy project, much like redevelopment of The Strand was Tony Mooney’s. She picked Lansdown to be her legacy, so she isn’t going to give up, no matter the cost – financial or reputational.

    • I’ll be plucked says:

      Hey Gal, her current ‘legacy’ is being the most secretive Mayor in the history of the TCC, evidenced by her continual invoking of ‘commercial in confidence’………

      • The Magpie says:

        On that point, wouldn’t it be good if just one journalist … from anywhere, radio, TV – we know we’/re not going to get it from the paper – asked the simple question: why is the amount of money the mayor has allocated to the Lansdown project commercial in Confidence? The answer cannot possibly break the covenants of commercial in confidence provisions.

        Commercial in confidence
        A classification that identifies information that, if disclosed, may result in damage to a party’s commercial interests, intellectual property or trade secrets. You must not disclose any information marked ‘Commercial in Confidence’ without permission from the party who supplied it. This type of information is protected through Confidentiality Agreements.

  4. Fat Tony says:

    Sticking with the “T’was the night before Christmas“ theme, I happened upon this gem on Faceplant during the week which captures the true spirit of Christmas in Townsville.

    Credited to Charles Stout

    T’was the night before Christmas and all through the Ville,
    Little “creatures” from Kirwan were ready to steal.
    All wallets were hidden and cars locked with care,
    With hope in the morning they would all still be there.
    Children are sleeping and parents alike,
    Whilst in their backyard someone is stealing their bike.
    I switched on the aircon and began counting sheep,
    And settled right in for a good nights sleep.
    When out on the lawn there arose such a clatter,
    I sprang from my bed, to see what was the matter.
    Seems someone has broken the lock to my front door,
    And has driven away in my Commodore.
    The Police were called to file a report,
    We’ll be there in 4 hours came the retort.
    Say goodbye to your car and your neighbours new ute,
    Cause Police aren’t allowed to engage in pursuit.
    The Constable says ‘I’m real sorry mate
    But our balls are in a vice, from the laws in this state’.
    Coming straight out of Condon and up to no good,
    Gangs of delinquents roam neighbourhoods.
    They’re bashing, they’re stealing, they’re cutting and burning,
    They’re robbing, they’re breaking, each night they’re returning.
    Just when you believe they won’t go too far,
    They’re jacking old people when they stop in their car.
    You’ve set up the tree and laid out the presents,
    Too unaware of an intruders presence.
    You’ve bought the kids new scooters knowing full well though,
    They will shortly belong to someone in Kelso.
    And the cricket bat for Timmy to swing in the park,
    Will be used in a Robbery once it gets dark.
    They are creeping and sneaking quiet as a mouse,
    As all the electronics are removed from your house.
    They empty your cupboards, your pantry and drawers,
    They’ll find where you wallet is hidden for sure.
    Your statement will show that your AMEX and Visa,
    Were maxed out at BWS Mount Louisa.
    Stolen cars are pulled from Ross River by divers,
    While an ambulance treats the 12 year old drivers.
    They are arrested and held by Police til the morning,
    When the Judge lets them off with their 17th warning.
    The Magistrate’s happily let this farce go on longer,
    Because it doesn’t affect them in Yarrawonga.
    Christmas morning you wake and open your eyes,
    And find with the greatest degree of surprise.
    That no burglar, no prowler, no mischievous brat,
    Had managed to break through the door of your flat.
    The tree and the presents you managed to defend,
    You must be the luckiest guy in West End.
    The dog was let out and your car may be taken,
    But you somehow avoided a full blown break-in.
    So key lock your doors and keep valuables out of sight.
    Merry Christmas to all, and remember they’ll come back tonight.

    • The Magpie says:

      A woman named Judy who texted the editor will particularly appreciate that clever verse.

      • Private Eye says:

        Talking to one lady about this

        How do the locals deal with it? the smart ones that is..

        Simple – bars, screens, security systems.

        A trip to bunnings has discovered the threat is evolving, the multigrips AND wire cutters are now locked onto the top of the display. The general consensus is they are now cutting through screens now people are putting proper locks on their doors.

        You need to start barricading. beautiful words aren’t going to save you or handouts to various organisations so they arent bored enough to break in. Come election time criminal voting blocks will swing the numbers again.

        • Cantankerous but happy says:

          This is how the spiral starts when the law losers control and people no longer feel safe, criminals get more destructive and dangerous, so property owners do the same. They use pliers and mini oxy burners, so I buy alarms and laser lights, they bring a baseball bat or knife, so I keep a gun, it’s as simple as that, all because the law failed to protect people in the first place. Gun ownership is going through the roof in Australia, something that is not reported but firearms dealers are as busy as they have ever been, and that’s just the legal guns, imagine how many illegal guns are out there,

          • Private Eye says:

            Before last state election the Labor party legalised voting for prisoners of 3 years or less; let’s be honest , given the current sentencing some heinous crimes are airily waved away for 3 years or less.

            Vote as much as you want, this train will continue. Think of the thousands of dangerous people walking around on the street , will they vote for parties hard on crime or soft on crime. The Labor party has firmly decided a life of crime keeps them in power, the only time they panic is when a key demographic gets killed by other key demographics – single white female going through uni or in a gov job getting killed sets the alarm bells ringing, hands wringing then all shoved under the carpet.

            Complain as much as you want the time now is to start barricading and introducing some cameras around your home.

          • The Magpie says:

            You a political analyst and strategy expert for the Libs? Better try harder.

  5. One legged tap dancer says:

    Has Uncle Rupert moved into new territory in dictating what stories people read on the Townsville Bulletin website.
    (No, I’m not talking about the paywall)
    A few weeks ago when I logged on to the Bully website one morning I was greeted with the news that Rupert had studied what sort of stories I was interested in and was going to target them for me with a new innovation called “My News”.
    A bit dodgy, I thought at the time, but if was going to be able to read all the other stories published in the print edition, what harm could it do.
    I recently found out.
    Having read two stories of particular interest in Saturday’s (print) newspaper I went online to make comment on them, but they were nowhere to be found.
    I then did a search for key words, including prominent people’s names (like Thompson), but still couldn’t find any mention of the two stories, so I went back to the top of the webpage and scrolled through the stories again, only to notice (for the first time) a note which said:
    “Recomended based on what you’ve read”, and a “Customise now” click through.
    That took me to the new, you-beaut “My News” service, which they described as my “customised news feed”.
    So, could it be that Rupert is now dictating what stories online subscribers read on the Townsville Bulletin website, and possibly those of all his other newspapers as well?
    Imagine how something like that could be used to influence, for example, an election result, feeding readers only positive stories about one (preferred) candidate, and negative ones for the others.
    And just how much information is Rupert gathering from our reading preferences and comments?
    And are readers profiles being passed on to others, such as advertisers and political parties?
    Surely there are laws against any such attempt at censorship, and possible invasion of our privacy.

    • The Magpie says:

      1. And just how much information is Rupert gathering from our reading preferences and comments? Lots.
      2.And are readers profiles being passed on to others, such as advertisers and political parties? Of course, but probably sold not passed gratis.
      3. Surely there are laws against any such attempt at censorship, and possible invasion of our privacy? Not that The ‘Pie is aware of … because you signed up for it. Something never recommended. And who would ever just want to read ab out stories of particular interest to them? Often, something in a field not normally on your agenda pops up and is of interest and is informative.

      Not illegal, just nasty.

      • Jenny Wren says:

        Re the Townsville Bulletin, you can get around the “My News” selection by using the option “Read the paper as it was printed” option in the drop down menu under your name near the top right hand corner of the screen.

  6. One legged tap dancer says:

    I signed up for a newspaper subscription.
    At no time have I ever signed up for “My News”.
    Clicking through out of curiosity surely doesn’t mean I signed up for “My News””, or does it?

  7. Molly9 says:

    Curious about the so called 2 hours free parking in the CBD for Xmas shopping(laughing ha ha).
    My memory of the last time I used this ‘gift’, is that you could NOT move your vehicle after 2 hours to a new spot, the ‘gift’ was 2 hours free parking in the CBD for the day. The Inspectors can record your car details, and if you moved it, and it was rescanned, you were done and fined.
    I’m happy to be corrected.

  8. Cantankerous but happy says:

    Would be ironic if Craig done his arse on his new house, after a year of towing the Mullets line and failing to report on just how bad things are in Townsville, reality may cost him dearly.

    • Hardy Normal says:

      News Limited favourite partner Harvey Norman loves Townsville as it make millions by taking insurance payouts from the many many residents who are victims of the growing crime wave selling them new goods time and time again. The circle of crime in Townsville the new normal.

      • The Magpie says:

        Well, OK, the sins of Harvey Norman are certainly many, but this is hardly one of them, can’t blame them for government neglect.

  9. Nickster says:

    Council Meeting this Wednesday – its Monday morning and there is no meeting agenda https://www.townsville.qld.gov.au/about-council/council-meetings/meetings-agendas-and-minutes

    I guess it must be commercial in confidence.

    Maybe Cr Fran can ask when council should and should no use CiC?

  10. Grumpy says:

    Does anyone know if the railway yard land sold by Honeycomb to a developer for an “eye watering” amount is the same land gifted to him by Jenny Hill several years back?

    • The Magpie says:

      Yup. Peppercorn deal, but sale not rent as one recalls.

      • Grumpy says:

        Sorry, but that’s fucking outrageous.

        • Cantankerous but happy says:

          If I remember rightly Honeycombe and the Mullet were thick as back then, deeply in love, all sorts of support for his crumby little apartments in Flinders St West, possible involvement in the North rail yards next door and support for his failed ferry terminal project. Then it all went to shit for some reason and he moved south, love is a funny thing.

        • The Magpie says:

          Well, not yet, the professional protection racket that operates at the higher echelon of the judicial ranks has nothing to do with the clear miscarriage of justice in this case, where an individual’s liberty was taken from him for reasons of pique by a person who is emotionally unstable and has clearly has unresolved ‘daddy’ issues.

          Vasta’s legal megaphone says sure he made a mistake, don’t we all, let’s move on, can’t go suing judges, y’know. And the barrister for the Commonwealth says if the civil case goes against Vasta, well, goodness, that means if anyone down to the level of magistrate makes a mistake when jailing people – and don’t we all make mistakes, really, c’mon now – then they too could be sued. To which The Magpie asks ‘yes, and your point is?’

          Best remember this exchange tween Humpty Dumpty and Alice.
          “When I use a word,” Humpty Dumpty said in rather a scornful tone, “it means just what I choose it to mean—neither more nor less.” “The question is,” said Alice, “whether you can make words mean so many different things.” And mistake will suddenly turn out to be an alternative fact for ‘you’re OK Sal.’

          Meanwhile Vasta is still picking his half mill per, proving there is the law and there is justice, and rarely doth the twain meet.

          Be most interested to know if this is a civil jury trial,m or a judge only trial.

          • Achilles says:

            It was same in Dickens’ day too: If the law supposes that,” said Mr. Bumble, squeezing his hat emphatically in both hands, “the law is a ass — a idiot. If that’s the eye of the law, the law is a bachelor; and the worst I wish the law is, that his eye may be opened by experience — by experience.”

  11. Alahazbin says:

    Sad to hear the death of gardening guru, Peter Cundall. In the family press release they expressed their desire for privacy at this time and no photos to be published with any news item. So, what do News Limited aka the astonisher do? Publish his photo. NO RESPECT!
    An apology to the family in the next issue please.

    • The Magpie says:

      Don’t agree. In matters like this, it is not up to the family of a deceased to request censorship of any sort including a ban on images of a person, especially a much loved figure who was part of the lives of so many. And The ‘Pie cannot imagine why the family wanted such a stipulation, Peter was respected and admired and there would be no disrespect if his picture was published …. grieving or not, is not up to the family to even request such a stipulation.

      The media is free to pass on the information in the best standard and respectful way that is its legal and ethically remit.

      This should also have applied to the recent passing of aboriginal actor David Gulpilil. Because of catch-all ‘cultural reasons’ several publication confused everyone with the news of David’s death with headlines like these – including an image!!

      … and editorial advisory notes like this codswallop.

      “Dalaithngu was better known by a different surname at the height of his stardom, but the ABC has been advised that for Indigenous cultural reasons that name can’t be used.”

      Two things arise out of this knee-jerk wrong headedness by some media. Newspapers particularly have a general rule – or did have – that the essence of a story is in the headline. The Magpie was among multitude who saw these headlines and asked ‘who’? Nothing was gained by this sort of extreme virtue signalling.

      But moreover, that is surely more insulting to the deceased, beloved of millions of Australians, not just the small indigenous group to which David belonged. Informing the general populace of that someone they knew by one name only had passed away is in this instance more important, sensible and journalistically responsible than breaking a cultural law born of medieval perhaps stone age superstition that would affect very few, if any.

      But then the overly woke papers – one even saying they wouldn’t mention the person’s other name, only that he was an icon and a globally acclaimed actor – then published photographs of David Gulpilil to get their confused message across!! Last time The Magpie heard, images of dead members of the indigenous community were an strict no-no, requiring a trigger warning from most news outlets, who, after much hanky wringing, had decided to deliver clearly understandable information..

      The demands of cultural sensitivity towards indigenous deceased are fair enough if that person was a mainly noted as A strong figure in the indigenous community, but if they entered into the wider world of Australian society through the arts, politics or even the judiciary, then passing should attract all the respect and love that their names and images invoke in ALL off us.

  12. The Wulguru Wonder says:

    Tossing this question out there as perhaps other Magpie commentators may know the answer.

    Just wondering about one aspect of today’s announcement about opening the QLD border for fully vaccinated people.

    One of the requirements is that travellers who have come from a declared hot spot (currently all of NSW and VIC, metropolitan Adelaide, and parts of the NT) are required to return a negative PCR Covid-19 test within the 72 hours prior to arrival, and then return another negative test on their fifth day in Queensland.

    It’s my understanding that the quantitative polymerase chain reaction (PCR)​ testing for Covid-19 test works by amplifying bits of genetic material that are specific to the SARS-CoV-2 virus and not any other related viruses.

    The advantages of using PCR are that it’s very specific and relatively fast. The downside is that it can’t differentiate between infectious viral particles or bits of viral debris that might be present, say after a person’s immune system has attacked and destroyed the virus.
    We know bits of viral debris can hang around in someone’s body for weeks or even months. Hence, the PCR test is able to pick up previous (historical) infections.

    So someone may have had a very mild case of the virus and asymptomatic, (probably even unaware they had contracted it) and are now fully recovered and not contagious, but still return a positive test.

    Or perhaps they may have been recorded as a positive case several months ago and are now now longer infectious, but would still return a positive PCR test.

    Does anyone know if there have been any announcements about what would happen in these instances?

    • The Magpie says:

      Invitation to a rort, anyone?

      • Prince Rollmop says:

        The lack of transparency is breathtaking. We are talking about a project which may cost the ratepayer many millions of dollars (should something go ahead out there), and yet this Council enacts ‘secret squirrel’ confidentiality clauses at every turning point. There should be an inquiry into the use (or should that be misuse) of ‘confidentiality’ by local, state and federal governments when it suits them. It’s fucking sham.

  13. Cantankerous but happy says:

    Had some young bloke knock on my door trying to flog solar panels, nice enough fellow but failed to do his homework and got a bit rattled when I went through the numbers about why it’s a giant rip off, all set up to make the Labor party money and all the ways I could invest that money for a much better return. The whole renewables thing has reached a low point of desperation when they are sending out uninformed sales people knocking on doors to try and get business.

  14. Not So Funny Man says:

    If you want an interesting read, look up (name supplied but withheld in the person’s interests – Magpie) on Linkedin. She was a victim of a certain narcissistic Director, like many other middle and senior managers on TCC.
    And a good question to ask of Madam Mayor would be “what’s the turn-over rate of middle and senior managers at the Council in the past 3 years. It would have to be more than 60% which is outrageous. And the amount of contract payouts has to be in the $millions.
    I was one of those unfortunate managers but alas you can’t use my name because there was a secrecy clause in my payout contract.

    • The Magpie says:

      Although we don’t find out what Not so Funny is talking about regarding the link to LinkedIn, The ‘Pie has been unable to contact the named person for permission to use their name, which may reflect on current employment.

      • Prince Rollmop says:

        Perhaps ‘not so funny man’ could utilise this platform to disseminate some tasty morsels of information from his/her/it’s time within TCC’s management ranks? There has been more than one person who has provided truthful information to The Magpie on occasion. It’s always nice for the ratepayer to see what their money is really buying them, particularly when Jenny Shill is involved.

  15. Doxie says:

    With all these “massive fines” Anna Alphabet is promising if we step out of line in the next however long, it’d be fun to know just how many don’t/won’t get paid but add to the growing list at SPER. Just thinkin’………..

  16. Strand Ghost says:

    Gee the Free parking in the city must be a big success? As I go into Sturt street approximately 3/4 a week to get mail, go to chemist, or woolies there is always plenty of Parks from Denham to Stanley Streets but yesterday couldn’t find a park anywhere, normally you could fire a shotgun and not hit a car, so I finally got a park at Woolies and I went for a walk around the block and there didn’t seem to many people around the city area, well who owned all the cars in the parking bays wouldn’t be workers would it? Ah Jenny looking after city business again.

  17. Mike Douglas says:

    Aaron Harper the gift that keeps on giving text to the editor today calling the usual texters to the Bully about crime ” these same old punters ” and they must be anti -labor , KAP , rusted on LNP voters . He then states the paper must be so devoid of content to run them . Aaron is quick on social media when the paper labelled he and his wife ” power couples ” then there are the photos in footy jerseys at the stadium and all those social functions but dont dare criticise his State Government with facts .

  18. Achilles says:

    Covid stats from Victoria every day in excess of 1000, NSW around 200. Wouldn’t have anything to do with the Lemmings (read Zombies) who congregate in Melbourne every weekend?

  19. The Magpie says:

    Hey, there Townsville Bulletin, here’s your news tip for the day.

    A decent size Townsville plumbing company has just gone into administration and builders locally are handing back contracts due to cost blowouts on wages /materials . Mass business failure expected across Qld .

    Hop to it, chop chop.

    • Cantankerous but happy says:

      Think you will find it’s the Sunshine Coast one that has shit itself, from memory the Townsville and Cairns side of the business is a different entity.

    • NQ Gal says:

      Normally one part of the country has a boom while another is in lull and the tradies will move where the work is.

      As the entire country has had a building boom courtesy of federal and state grants, trades are in short supply and everyone has to wait their turn. Add to that the disruption to supply lines, and build costs and times have blown out. It is indeed a profitless boom for builders.

  20. COVID Lies says:

    So unvaccinated cannot go to a pub but can go to a TAB what the hell

    More proof Queensland Government’s COVID response is not about health it’s about spin, and money.


    • The Magpie says:

      It has now got to the point of high farce.

    • Westie says:

      Fortunately vaccinated people can go into either.

      So the obvious answer is to use your brain, and ……

      • COVID Lies says:

        But why Westie can Unvaccinated people go into TAB’s

        What a ridiculous decision but the Palaszczuk Government it is all money & politics – first -public health second.

        Its simple if your unvaccinated you cannot go to public places. You can get everything online – groceries, smokes, grog, gambling.

  21. The Magpie says:

    Some don’t even try to hide the hypocrisy.

  22. Elusive Butterfly says:

    Mr. Pie, I see proof reading at the Bulletin is up to its usual standard!

    “Tears were shed as a North Queensland mayor resigned from the position of deputy mayor, citing business and family commitments.”

  23. John Byrne says:

    Under instructions from Council, CLH Lawyers of Brisbane have sent out
    hundreds (maybe thousands) of letters of demand to ratepayers and others who
    are behind in their payments to Council.

    While it is perfectly acceptable that these funds be recovered, why is a Council that tells us to shop
    locally and complains about SE corner favouritism, not using a Townsville
    law firm ? This work is easily within the capacity of almost every law firm
    in Townsville. If Council is worried about prejudices or political biases
    of older big firms, there is a multitude of junior, non-aligned, small new
    law firms that would do this task very economically and gratefully !

    John Byrne
    Byrnes – Business Lawyers

    • Grumpy says:

      Why, hellloo, sailor…..

    • Prince Rollmop says:

      Perhaps there is a ‘silent’ link between TCC, LGAQ and the Brisbane law firm? Who is mates with who? Who owes someone a favour? Who stands to benefit in some way from using a Brisbane law firm instead of a local law firm? How much is the contract between TCC and the Brisbane law firm worth, and did it go out to tender and go through a rigorous procurement process? These questions could be put to the purple doona wearer but she would bellow out the words ‘commercial in confidence’ to bury the issue.

    • Polythene Pam says:

      I think you’ll find John that a number of Queensland Councils use CLH Lawyers as their debt recovery lawyers – I assume there is a collective financial deal of some sort in place – but I stand to be corrected.

      • The Magpie says:

        There may also be an element of ‘arms length’, because it’s an unpleasant job which may result in, shall we say, some unauthorised response from miffed locals.

    • Law Researcher says:

      Big picture – CLH Lawyers, along with Lion Finance, is owned by COLLECTION HOUSE LIMITED. Standard procedure these days is to ‘sell’ your bad debts to a collections agency. Not sure what TCC has actually done, but CLH is simply the legal arm of a debt collector. Expect no mercy I would suspect. https://www.abc.net.au/news/2019-08-13/debt-collectors-suing-for-bankruptcy-over-small-credit-card-debt/11335000

  24. Avogadro's Number says:

    I just read the comment by John Byrne regarding TCC using a Brisbane-based firm of lawyers to issue demand letters. Did anyone else see this item (and I quote):

    “Residents urged to think local this Christmas
    Townsville City Council is asking residents to give Townsville businesses the ultimate gift this Christmas by shopping locally.

    Mayor Jenny Hill said many local businesses were still feeling the effects and uncertainty of the COVID-19 global pandemic.

    “Some of our local traders are still hurting and struggling to keep the doors open,” Cr Hill said.

    “One of the best things we can do this festive season is to spend money locally.”

    Obviously TCC does not consider the supply of legal services worthy of local support; Or legal services are subject to “”Commercial-In-Confidence”” provisions as defined by Jeny Hill.
    The full article is at:


    • The Magpie says:

      Saw that but didn’t publish it, it is such a meaningless bit of virtue signalling from the mayor who is an LGAQ board member who brought us Local Buy, which is anything but.

  25. Tomato Head says:

    The Beetrooter has tested positive to COVID upon his arrival into the USA. Perhaps the USA will do a ‘pistol and boo’ and dispatch the Beetrooter back to Australia ASAP?

  26. The Magpie says:

    Well, they’re not wrong. Nothing new here.

  27. Interested observer says:

    Would love to find out just hown much ratepayers money is paid to the Townsville Bulletin each year for advertising in return for favourable treatment.
    Front page story today celebrates that “four new companies have been tentatively allocated space in the (Landsdown) precinct”.
    Note the use of the word “tentatively”.
    Frothy Molachino and Jenny Hill have apparently convinced hard-hitting reporter Caitlan Charles and whoever the editor is at the moment that preliminary enquires are definite plans.
    And, significantly, no mention of the elephant in the room – the Magnis battery packing shed. Has it finnaly turned to dust?
    Obviously Hill has decreed that Magnis is off limits.
    Given her insistence that the battery factory was a definite goer, one can only whonder how long it will take for these new proponents to fall by the wayside.

    • GST SHAM says:

      The whole situation is unbelievable. They have a duty to keep the community informed every step of the way but the Mulletin refuses any scrutiny and continues the good ole nothing to see here tale!

    • NQ Gal says:

      Two of the companies to be allocated space have been registered for less than 6 months. RTE Energy Pty Ltd – August 2021 and Solquartz Pty Ltd – July 2021.
      NQ Gas Pipeline is the existing pipeline from the Bowen basin into Townsville.

  28. The Magpie says:

    The Daily Mulletin

    Mayor Mullet Announces New Smoke And Mirrors Factory For Lansdown

    Mayor Mullet Inspects Preparations At The Lansdown Hub in the Scrub.

    Our Dear Mayor has hailed a breakthrough with the signing of a cutting edge, iconic world class industry which has signed up for free land at the Lansdown’ Eco-Hub in the Scrub’.

    ‘The company, Top Spinners, is widely experienced in this field, bringing new technology to this thriving commercial and governmental sector,’ the mayor told an awe-struck Mulletin reporter.

    ‘I am assured it is eco-friendly, with all smoke being non-toxic and mainly hot air with a little fog thrown in, and the mirrors will only use the best possible light and cannot not cause any bad reflection on the user.’

    She said the product would come in several different models, including The Trump, The Smirko, and The Anna.

    ‘But Top Spinners assure me there will be a strong local component, with plans for a Harpic version, and investigations are underway for a Brumme-Smith TEL version, but so far, the company can’t find anything to hide for that model.’

    Mayor Mullet emphasised that the product was not only eco-friendly, but also was non-toxic.

    ‘Extensive secret trials have shown that the smoke used, when blown up the anus of ratepayers, does no bodily harm, although adjacent wallets have sustained some damage.’

    A company spokesman said their researchers had been unable to develop a version that could be used on magpies. ‘This particular creature appears to be immune to the effects of bullshit, but we’ll keep trying’ he said.

    • The (barely) Civil Engineer says:

      Just a tiny correction feathered friend.

      TCC has only “Tentatively allocated” land to these firms. That is technical talk for “drew a box on a plan” and does not signify any interest from the firms, any action from the firms, nor any whisp of a contract.

      This is an internal TCC stictch-up to divert attention from Magnis.

    • The Magpie says:



      Mayor Mullet announces new industry set to sign up for Lansdown land.
      ‘Manufacturing will begin immediately,’ the mayor simpered to a mesmerised Mulletin reporter, “and I urge all locals to support this world-class, breakthrough, iconic product which will put us the map as a serious scientific and environmental hub.’

  29. The Magpie says:

    Now they are dicing on the edge of discoverable illegality … but hey, all’s good for Lansdown, eh?

    Magnis Energy moves to shut down critics

    JOURNALIST The Australian

    8:06PM DECEMBER 8, 2021
    Magnis Energy – the hi-tech electric battery player that has become a sharemarket favourite – is threatening former directors, executives and major investors who the company claims are circulating damaging information.
    Perceived Magnis critics have also received threatening, anonymous, phone calls – at least one former executive has reported these to NSW police.
    Magnis has been under considerable scrutiny from both the Australian Securities & Investments Commission and the ASX relating to the potential manipulation of its share price and other issues.
    In a letter sent by lawyers engaged by Magnis last month, K&L Gates partner Russell Lyons accused several people associated with the company of “acting in concert with a group of shareholders (and former investors)” in using an anonymous email to “disseminate misleading, deceptive and defamatory content”.
    The text of one email allegedly sent by the group contains claims that Magnis has acted illegally.
    “The company considers the contents of the email to be misleading, deceptive and defamatory and … may also constitute an attempt to manipulate the market for the company’s shares,” Mr Lyons wrote.
    READ MORE: Watchdog demanded documents from Magnis| Magnis in ‘drug boss’ dealings| Magnis chair sent price-sensitive information| Magnis withdraws $10bn ‘potential value’ claim| Magnis chair re-elected despite share price probe| Booze, ciggies, gym fees: Magnis’ alleged Tanzanian spending spree
    One recipient of the letter, AL Capital chief executive Wayne Mo, wrote back: “AL Capital and I personally had no involvement or any knowledge of the email you mentioned. We only know about its existence from your letter.
    “Your accusation of AL Capital’s (or my personal) involvement in the email is totally untrue. We reserve our right to take legal actions against you and your clients, should you not cease the accusation immediately,” Mr Mo, who runs the investment arm of the Chinese-backed property developer Aqualand, wrote.
    AL Capital was earlier one of Magnis’ largest shareholders.
    Former Macquarie executive Warwick Smith sat on the Magnis board as its representative.
    In November, The Australian reported that Magnis executive chairman Frank Poullas had written to Mr Mo and urged him to increase his stake in the company “at considerably lower prices” to a proposed share placement.
    Mr Mo said he “did receive that email and it had market sensitive information, and we told Frank we had no intention to act that way”. However, Mr Mo made his comments to The Australian well after Mr Lyons had circulated the legal threat.
    Separately, NSW police confirmed that it had been alerted to at least one incident involving a former Magnis figure who was allegedly threatened and harassed.
    The Australian does not suggest this was done by a company employee, or at the company’s behest – only that the threat was related to perceived criticism of Magnis by the recipient.
    Magnis has previously warned other former company figures, including ex-chief executive Frank Houllis – and one-time directors Peter Sarantzouklis and James Dack – that they could also face legal action.
    Magnis reports show, in the last financial year, it spent $1.48m on legal and consulting expenses. This came after Magnis spent $1.29m on legal expenses last financial year.
    A confidential audit of payments and agreements, created by former Magnis chief financial officer Meghan McPherson and its ex-director Leslie Hosking in early 2020, warned that some lawyers had been engaged with no written contact. “No contract in writing received from the lawyer until 18 Feb 2020 after several requests,” it read in part.
    The company was also entangled in litigation with a former consultant, Stefan Spruck, who claimed he was owed more than $1m by the company after it allegedly terminated his role when he revealed the company was dealing with alleged drug smuggling kingpin, Hakan Arif, in Turkey.
    A Magnis spokesman did not respond to requests for comment.
    Despite the upheaval, Magnis shares have risen 142 per cent this year, although they have fallen 40 per cent in the past month.
    Shares fell 2 per cent on Wednesday to close at 46c.
    That was after The Australian published documents – obtained through a freedom of information request – that showed Magnis had been approached by ASIC in mid-September with requests to hand over various documents.
    The request for Magnis to produce documents came one day after The Australian’s initial report into the batteries company that raised questions about the veracity of some of the $900m in contracts that had been signed.
    The report also raised queries about the disclosure of the terms of a $US63m ($A88.3m) loan, which the company later clarified had also required a fee – in the form of shares – to be paid to the lender.
    On November 17, in response to The Australian’s report that ASIC was investigating Mr Poullas, the company told the ASX it was “not under investigation”.
    “The media article repeats previously published speculation concerning trading in the company’s shares and inquiries undertaken by ASIC in relation to some trading in those shares,” the statement reads. “The company is not aware of any materials which would indicate that the company is or is likely to be under any form of investigation.”
    Magnis, which owns a controlling stake in New York-based batteries manufacturer Imperium3, has repeatedly been queried by the ASX, including in October when the company was forced to respond to questions about the size of contracts signed with Sukh Energy, one client. Financial reports showed Sukh had few assets and little revenue. That is despite Magnis claiming Sukh had signed a deal projected to provide $US243m by 2026.
    Despite providing no detail, Magnis claimed in its response to ASX queries that the Imperium3 business in New York would have yearly revenues of $80m in 2022, rising to $1.8bn in 2027.
    In November, Magnis was forced to retract a claim made at its general meeting that the company could be worth $10bn.The Magnis latest from the Australian.

    • Dave of Kelso says:

      Is there an executive summary?

      • Maggots Imperial the 3rd says:


        Dodgy Mayor’s mates have a track record of questionable behaviour with shady characters and financial regulators aren’t happy. But that’s not stopping Maggots employ standover tactics.

        More to come as the house of cards starts to fall.

  30. The Magpie says:

    From one of more than a dozen easily accessible sites.
    So, do turtles have fins?
    No. turtles do not have fins like those of a fish or a dolphin. They have their way of moving around in the water. Unlike the fish or dolphins, turtles have flippers and webbed feet on other turtle species. This is what they use to push water and move around the water quickly. Those that live entirely in water have flippers, while those that spend part of their lives on land have webbed feet.
    Now that we know that turtles do not have fins, we might want to know more about the turtle’s appearance. This will help us understand some of the basic parts of the turtles that help us to distinguish it from the tortoise and other animals.

    Sadly it is clear the juvenile click-bait sub editors (ha!) have no curiosity about basic English.

  31. Dave of Kelso says:

    Now I have read everything.

    With a $90 million prize pool I would be tempted too. Why not? If it is good enough for the sheilas, it is good enough for the camels, isn’t it?


  32. Snifter says:

    Nice bread crumb trail for the Astonisher yesterday. Tacomba
    plumbing Townsville branch is at Gordon st Garbutt . Spoke to a local
    builder last night and numerous Townsville builders have handed back
    contracts due to wage and materials increases.

  33. NQ Gal says:

    TCC is again playing fast and loose with the definition of “local”. In announcing the awarding of tender contracts Potty Mouth Ryder said that 80% of the tenders had gone to Townsville based businesses or “businesses with a commitment to establish an office in Townsville”.
    So what is the percentage that are actually Townsville businesses versus ones that will rent some cheap office space for the duration of the tender and then pack up and leave?

    • The Magpie says:

      You beat The ‘Pie to the punch, Gal, intended to make comment about that very thing. And the news release headline is simply egregious sophistry designed to deceive.

      What utter rot!

      The council DOES NOT – as a primary objective as implied here – invest in local businesses … they buy the services of skilled contractors, and they do so locally for electoral reasons, not the philanthropic motives they would have us believe.


      First of all, this is another example of seeking praise for doing what they’re elected to do … and would be doing but for the LGAQ’s rapacious rort of Local Buy. Be less galling if it was just put out there as stark facts and stats, but all this smarmy ‘Gosh, we’re good’ crapola tells us this council knows it is on the nose … the mayor for what she does and the councillors by and large for what they don’t do. And the establishment of a ‘local office’ employing locals raises an interesting question about policing that employment agreement.

      The truth is that sure, there will be jobs that we don’t readily have the skills or equipment for, and the tender goes to the most suitable. Giving tenders to locals – where a ‘local’ weighting might end up making a winning tender not the cheapest one – is still the obvious and responsible way to go. Benefits the community in the long run.

      And Mayor Mullet better keep and eye on Potty Mouth Ryder … or perhaps Frothy Molachino should, more importantly. This foul mouthed grasping woman who picks up her $120k per year as well whatever she gets as CFO for hubby’s transport-related business, came to town from Julia Creek with the warning she has unbounded ambitions and a less than admirable manner of getting what she wants in business and public life … and the top council job is an obvious target.

      • Westie says:

        I have always struggled with the idea of paying a premium to get your goods and services from a preferred supplier- in this case, local.

        You could achieve the same thing by buying your stuff from the non-local supplier at the cheaper price, and just donate the price premium you would of paid directly to the local supplier to do nothing.

        That relieves the local supplier from the burden of actually having to produce the stuff, while costing you exactly the same.

  34. The Magpie says:

    Wouldn’t be counting on an early election just at the moment.

    ALP (56.5%) increases lead over the L-NP (43.5%) to the largest since the last election as Morrison Government mired in infighting in final weeks of year – Roy Morgan ABIX poll


    • Nickster says:

      With Sth Aust going to polls in March 2022 we could find ourselves with Labor at all levels of Government with NSW in 2023…..?

      One political party controlling the entire country is not a good thing.

    • Alahazbin says:

      Yes Pie,
      Remember what the polls were before the last Federal election.

      • The Magpie says:

        Sure, but the point is Smirko not likely to call an election with those numbers, The ‘Pie is getting beyond caring with the whole bunch.

        • Prince Rollmop says:

          Sadly, I don’t blame you. They are all tarred with the same brush. None of them are worth a pint of panther piss.

          • Dave of Kelso says:

            In the 1970s in Sydney certain shops had that for sale in spray cans. Stale Old Panther Piss on the can if I remember correctly. Didn’t purchase any myself as dollars were few and booze and pipe tobacco were a higher priority.

          • The Magpie says:

            The Magpie is reluctant to publish this ad from way back when, and isn’t quite sure if it’s a prank, but it came in a whole bunch of authentic old messages. It is published in comments, as the audience in comments is a hardy band of brothers and sisters of the Nest, but it won’t make it into the blog.

          • The Magpie says:

            Whoops … it IS A PRANK. And what’s more, that’s KIM NOVAK! This is the real one.

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