This week, two union delegates, Joe Myles and Luke Collier, appeared in a Brisbane court this week (Monday July 6, 2015) over assaults and other offences directed at Australia First Party members on May 2, 2014.
Joe Myles and Luke Collier – representatives of the CFMEU
Australia First Party members had legally arrange to demonstrate in Brisbane’s CBD on May 2, 2014 in order to peacefully protest against the political trial of Golden Dawn parliamentarians and activists in Greece. They were confronted by a group of men who were either officials or active members of the CFMEU.
It is alleged that some of our members were singled out and assaulted and flags stolen. Some sustained injuries. It is further alleged that some hours later when a small group of Australia First supporters were in a hotel on Brisbane’s south side, they had been the subject of stalking and attacked again. An elderly man sustained injury.
We are aware that our commentary must be kept within legal bounds. We look forward to development of the legal process.
We were also advised today that a prominent Antifa activist is likely to be charged in relation to an assault last May upon anti halal slaughter protesters.
Other News Reported on Joe Myles
‘CFMEU makes light of organiser Joe Myles’ arrest on construction site’
(February 28, 2014)
“THE militant CFMEU has been caught glorifying the arrest of a union organiser who had allegedly trespassed twice on a construction site this week. The union backed the conduct of Victorian organiser Joe Myles with a sneering Facebook meme featuring two AFL stars giving him jailhouse salutes.
The Herald Sun believes Mr Myles was arrested on Tuesday and yesterday at a Footscray construction site, which is part of the $4 billion Regional Rail Link project.
The union defended his conduct and suggested the arrests were an unfair infringement on the rights of workers. This morning, it continued its defence of Mr Myles with a Facebook post showing Richmond midfielder Dustin Martin and ex-Magpie Andrew Krakouer giving cross-armed jailhouse salutes. Both Martin and Krakouer’s on-field gestures sparked controversy, especially as Krakouer had spent 16 months in prison for assault.”
“New AFL crackdown on handcuff salute,” the meme’s caption says. “Worried could be seen as tribute to Joe Myles, CFMEU.”
Mr Myles was first arrested on Tuesday after he apparently turned up at the Footscray worksite to complain about a safety issue. Police were called when he refused to leave the site and he was taken away in a divvy van about 11am. He was not carrying his right-of-entry permit. Yesterday, the Herald Sun understands he was arrested again and handcuffed after allegedly trying to disrupt a concrete pour, which could have caused lengthy delays.”
‘CFMEU organiser Joseph Myles allegedly threatens ‘war’ on major construction site’
(May 29, 2014)
“FWBC has launched proceedings in the Federal Court of Australia against the Construction, Forestry, Mining and Energy Union (CFMEU) and CFMEU organiser Joseph Myles.
The alleged conduct happened on the Regional Rail Link City Project in Footscray. John Holland, Abigroup Contractors and Coleman Rail were engaged by the State of Victoria as the main contractors responsible for the construction of the City to Maribyrnong River Project Package B (the Package B project). The Package B project is part of the Victorian Government’s Regional Rail Link project to build new regional train lines. Package B covers the section of the Regional Rail Link Corridor between the north end of Southern Cross Station platforms 1 – 8 and the upside of Hopkins Street Footscray, and a section of the Werribee Line.
The alleged conduct happened while the site offices, facilities and amenities for the Package B project were at Joseph Road, Footscray. There were almost 100 employees working on Package B at the relevant time.
On May 16, 2013, construction companies, John Holland and Abigroup, had engaged Boral Concrete to supply 130 cubic metres of wet concrete on 16 May 2013 to build a deflection wall. Concrete trucks were to arrive in approximately 10 minute intervals over a three to four hour period.
At about 11.50am, four Boral concrete trucks had delivered approximately 24.4 of the 130 cubic metres of concrete to be poured that day. At about midday, Joseph Myles and 15 to 20 other people, including other CFMEU officials, Drew McDonald and Shaun Reardon, and CFMEU members, arrived at Joseph Road and parked several cars across the width of the street outside the entrance gate, blocking vehicle access to the site.
They stood around the vehicles on the road. When the site manager asked Myles what he was doing, Myles responded sarcastically with words to the effect of: “we’ve lost our keys and are waiting for the RACV”.
Within 30 minutes, several Boral trucks carrying wet concrete were parked up Joseph’s Road unable to access the pumping equipment on site to unload the concrete.
At about 12.30pm, the site manager approached Myles who was standing around the parked cars on Joseph Street. Myles said words to effect: “I haven’t got a delegate on site to protect my members so I’m blocking the road”. The site manager replied: “The Alliance has an AWU delegate, we don’t need a CFMEU delegate. We are under an AWU agreement.” Myles responded with words to effect: “I will only remove the blockade if you stop the pour and pack the concrete pumps up.”
The blockade continued until about 2.30 pm when the people standing around the vehicles blocking the site shook hands, posed for a photograph with a CFMEU banner, then left in the vehicles.
Before he left the site, Myles said to the site manager words to effect: “I’ll be back tomorrow to stop the concrete pour” and “You won’t pour again until you put a delegate on and (CFMEU – Construction Victoria President) Ralph Edwards is happy”.
The 24.4 cubic metres of concrete poured was wasted and there were additional costs incurred in demolishing and disposing of it. While the order with Boral was cancelled shortly after midday, an additional 45 cubic metres of concrete had already been dispatched to the site which could not be used.
On May 17, 2013, at 10.05am, Myles returned to the Joseph Road site where he had a conversation with the site manager the substance of which was:
Myles: Has the project reconsidered having a delegate on site, because if there was a delegate on site, there would be no more issues guaranteed.
Site manager: No we haven’t considered a delegate, and won’t be having one.
Myles: Do you want a war or a delegate?
Site manager: Nobody wants a war.
Myles: Well if you don’t want to put a delegate on then we will have one. I’ll be back tomorrow to stop the concrete pour.
FWBC alleges Joseph Myles and the CFMEU contravened s348 of the Fair Work Act because they tried to coerce John Holland or Abigroup to employ or engage a CFMEU delegate.”
Read More: http://www.fwbc.gov.au/cfmeu-organiser-joseph-myles-allegedly-threatens-%E2%80%98war%E2%80%99-major-construction-site
‘CFMEU official Joseph John Myles punched man at Brisbane hotel, police claim’
(June 11, 2015)
“A CFMEU official punched a 66-year-old man to the ground of a Brisbane hotel and continued to attack the victim while he was on the floor, police will allege. It is alleged the assault at the Red Brick Hotel, Woolloongabba, in May last year erupted following simmering tensions between union and protest groups at an earlier rally in South Brisbane.
Unionist Joseph John Myles, who is from Victoria, appeared before the Brisbane Magistrates Court this morning to face charges including serious assault and affray. The court heard Myles had recently been picked up on an arrest warrant at Sydney Airport after returning from an overseas trip.
On May 2, 2014, members of the Australia First Party were protesting at the imprisonment of the Greek Golden Dawn Members of Parliament in a rally at South Brisbane when unionists took offence to the group’s use of an Eureka flag, it is alleged.
The union members allegedly confiscated the flag twice before the police retrieved it. Hours later, tensions between the sides escalated at the hotel. Myles is alleged to have punched a 66-year-old man to the ground and continued attacking him while he was on the floor.
The union official was previously released on bail in NSW, subject to the conditions that he was to surrender his passport and stump up a $10,000 cash surety. In the Brisbane Magistrates Court today, lawyers for Myles said he had had stable employment for the past eight years.
Brisbane Magistrate Judith Daley today ordered that Myles be allowed to remain on bail, subject to a $10,000 surety and a residential condition.
The matter will return to court on July 15.
Other News Reported on Luke Collier
‘CFMEU official Luke Collier facing Barangaroo site ban over criminal past’
(October 08, 2014)
“ONE of the union officials named and shamed in the Royal Commission for intimidating Fair Work inspectors and calling them “f … ing grubs” could be banned from the Barangaroo construction site because he failed to disclose his criminal past.
An application has been lodged with the Fair Work Commission to revoke the right of entry permit of Construction Forestry Mining and Energy Union organiser Luke Collier.
Fair Work Building and Construction director Nigel Hadgkiss yesterday said Mr Collier had applied for the permit to enter building sites without revealing convictions for causing injury and reckless damage and theft. “In my view a right of entry permit is a privilege which should not be abused or obtained through deceit,” he said.
Mr Collier was one of a group of union organisers the Royal Commission into Trade Union Governance and Corruption heard had subjected building inspectors at the Barangaroo casino hotel site to repeated intimidation and abuse. Officials were branded a “f … king dog”, a “f … king grub” and “lower than a paedophile”.
A female inspector was called a “f … ing slut” as 40 building workers surrounded her and a male colleague.
Mr Collier was named as one of the union organisers at the site together with CFMEU enforcer Darren Greenfield, who the commission heard had made a death threat to a whistle blower.
Also present as the intimidation took place was CFMEU NSW branch secretary Brian Parker, who allegedly had sex in a building site shed with prostitutes supplied by notorious underworld figure George Alex.
Mr Collier applied for an entry permit to building sites as a union organiser in 2013.
“Through the course of FWBC investigations, the agency became aware of allegations that Mr Collier had a criminal history,” Mr Hadgkiss said.
It then applied for his permit to be revoked because he did not reveal his criminal history when he applied for it.
The FWBC said that in 2003 Mr Collier was convicted of recklessly causing injury and criminal damage, which resulted in Victorian magistrates imposing a community based order on him. In 2005 he was found to have failed to comply with that order.
In 2007, the FWBC said Mr Collier was convicted in the Heidelberg Magistrate’s Court in Victoria of theft and going equipped to steal.
“Right of entry permit holders hold a great responsibility,” Mr Hadgkiss said.
“FWBC contends a person who omits or fails to disclose details of their criminal past on their application is not a fit and proper person under the Fair Work Act.
“FWBC has resorted to taking this action as it is of great concern to me that someone in a position of authority made a false declaration regarding their criminal background, especially considering the nature of Mr Collier’s convictions.”
A spokeswoman for the CFMEU said: “It is a matter before the tribunal and therefore it is inappropriate that we make any comment.”
‘CFMEU official allegedly directed work to stop on $163m Barangaroo site’
(21 January 2015)
“CFMEU official Luke Collier is facing court after he allegedly directed work to stop at a $163 million Barangaroo project.
FWBC also claims Mr Collier refused to obey occupational health and safety laws on site while conducting a right of entry visit. Mr Collier visited the Lend Lease Barangaroo Headland Park Project on 5 March 2014. The project includes construction of a cultural facility, a 300 space car park and the building of a new harbour cove.
Mr Collier allegedly directed workers to stop work and attend a meeting in relation to alleged safety concerns. Under the law, Mr Collier was not authorised to direct workers to stop work. As a result of his alleged unlawful direction, about 30 workers either stopped work or were confused and stood around waiting for instructions. Five of the site management team were also interrupted who had to stop their work to deal with the interruption.
FWBC claims that Mr Collier signed the sign-on book upon entry, acknowledging that he had read and would comply with safety requirements on site. This included being accompanied at all times by a Lend Lease project representative who had completed a full site induction.
Mr Collier allegedly continued to walk around the site unaccompanied even after a Lend Lease representative asked him not to. FWBC Director Nigel Hadgkiss said this was the third court case his agency had started against the CFMEU within a month regarding CFMEU officials not complying with safety rules on site.
“All this agency asks is that union officials obey the law when they are conducting site visits,” Mr Hadgkiss said.
FWBC is alleging Mr Collier, the CFMEU and the CFMEU NSW branch breached the Fair Work Act three times each. The maximum penalties available to the court in this case are $10,200 for an individual and $51,000 for a corporation, including a union. A directions hearing is scheduled in the Federal Circuit Court in Sydney for 4 February, 2015.”
‘Labor’s shameful silence on the intimidation of women’
(May 25, 2015)
“At the Downing Centre Local Court on April 20, few people paid attention to a domestic violence matter, yet it linked to a trail of hypocrisy that goes all the way to the power elite in Canberra.
At the hearing, Luke Collier, who has a history of intimidating behaviour, pleaded guilty to a charge of assaulting his former partner, Nicole.
More particularly, female staff members are rung at home at night and abused … One of our female staff received a phone call [and] he said ‘Me and my seven mates are going to come and f*** you tonight’.
Fair Work Building Commission head Nigel Hadgkiss
He does have plenty of form, including intimidating women. Collier is currently banned from going on to worksites as an organiser for the Construction, Forestry, Mining and Energy Union.
The royal commission into union corruption has published evidence of Collier’s intimidation of women on worksites. Last year, at the Barangaroo site in Sydney, he called a female inspector from Fair Work “a f…… slut” and “f…… dog”.
On July 24 last year, he harassed another female Fair Work inspector, and played the song Who let The Dogs Out on a loud hailer when she entered a worksite.
In February this year, the Fair Work Commission suspended Collier’s right of entry after finding he had falsely claimed he had never been convicted of a crime.
In 2007, Collier was convicted of theft and going equipped to steal. In 2003, he was convicted of recklessly causing injury and criminal damage. In 2004, he failed to comply with a community based order.
His conduct fits a pattern of harassment of women by CFMEU members. Among more recent incidents examined by the royal commission, a female Fair Work inspector was spat on by a CFMEU member on a construction site at Wooli Creek last year.
In testimony before the royal commission, the head of the Fair Work Building Commission, Nigel Hadgkiss, said: “We have 25 documented cases of what are known as serious security matters involving my staff in recent years … where their personal details, home address and telephone numbers are put up…
“More particularly, female staff members are rung at home at night and abused … One of our female staff received a phone call [and] he said ‘Me and my seven mates are going to come and f*** you tonight’.
“Some of the female staff come out of these experiences pretty badly and do not continue in those duties.”
Hadgkiss gave evidence that a CFMEU official, Shaun Reardon, had made late-night threatening phone calls to a female Fair Work inspector
At the time, Reardon was a White Ribbon anti-domestic violence ambassador. This fits with a grotesque double standard by the CFMEU on the issue of intimidation of women.
In October 2013, Dave Noonan, the national secretary of the union’s construction division, issued a press release titled “Real men don’t abuse women”.
But in 2014, after media reports about Collier’s abuse of a female Fair Work inspector, Noonan issued a press release which stated “Swearing on building sites is nothing new”.
The pattern of intimidation goes back a long way. In March, Justice Tracey of the Federal Court found that several CFMEU officials, including John Setka, Shaun Reardon and Craig Johnston, had engaged in acts of intimidation in 2012 during a dispute in the Melbourne central business district with construction company Grocon.
The judge found that workers were met by protesters, led by Setka, Reardon and Johnston, hurling abuse and threats including “scabs”, “dogs”, “rats”, “you will die”, and “I am going to kill your family”.
Previously, when Johnston was Victorian Secretary of the AMWU, he led an infamous “run-through” with 30 balaclava-wearing thugs who broke into a Melbourne office, hurled chairs through windows, upended filing cabinets, flung computers to the floor and threatened staff, including a woman who was five months’ pregnant.
Another female employee testified she could not sleep properly for months after the attack.
In 2004, Johnston was convicted of riot, affray, criminal damage and aggravated burglary. He served nine months in prison.
Far from being condemned, a Craig Johnston Trade Union Support Committee was set up and issued a statement that “we will be waiting there at the gates when he comes out”. When he was released from prison, Dave Noonan was waiting to admit him to the CFMEU.
Last year, after two CFMEU officials went to the media to detail links between the union and organised crime, they were thrown out of the union by Noonan, and Michael O’Connor, the national secretary of the CFMEU.
On Thursday, Queensland police attached to the Royal Commission into Trade Union Governance and Corruption arrested a 42-year-old man on common assault charges, after a 58-year-old female construction site owner was allegedly assaulted in Brisbane on May 14.
O’Connor is the CFMEU’s chief lobbyist in Canberra where the union enjoys the support of both the Labor Party and the Greens.
Labor’s Senator Doug Cameron is the undisputed champion for the CFMEU. He has asked hundreds and hundreds of questions about CFMEU matters during senate estimates hearing, always seeking to defend or rationalise the union’s conduct.
Union Pathway to Parliament
Labor’s leader in the Senate, Penny (Ying-Yen) Wong, is a former industrial officer and adviser to the CFMEU.
The leader of the Labor Party, Bill Shorten, (former AWU National Secretary) has been outspoken about violence against women.
Yet on the subject of the CFMEU’s inglorious record of intimidating women, Shorten, Wong and Cameron have had little, if anything, to say.”