Shadow attorney-general Mark Dreyfus has called on NSW Police to investigate an allegedly forged document that Emissions Reduction Minister Angus Taylor used in a political attack against Sydney Lord Mayor Clover Moore.
Labor had demanded Scott Morrison refer the matter to police and said it would if the Prime Minister did not.
The Prime Minister’s office told the ABC that Mr Morrison had no intention of referring the case to police, prompting Mr Dreyfus to write to NSW Police Commissioner Mick Fuller.
Mr Taylor faced sustained questioning in Parliament on Thursday over figures he used in a letter to Cr Moore, accusing City of Sydney councillors of racking up a $15 million travel bill at a time when the organisation was trying to spruik its green credentials.
He told the House of Representatives the document he relied on was the council’s 2017-18 annual report, which “was drawn directly from the City of Sydney’s website” and “was publicly available”.
The Liberal frontbencher used the $15 million figure in a letter to Cr Moore at the end of September, where he argued cutting down on “unnecessary air travel” would provide a “real opportunity for your council to make a meaningful contribution to reducing Australia’s emissions”.
Details of the letter were published in Sydney’s Daily Telegraph newspaper at the time.
The Lord Mayor took aim at Mr Taylor, accusing him of using a “fraudulent document” and stating the council’s annual report showed a travel bill in the range of $6000.
She told The Guardian Australia that the report had not been altered since it was uploaded to the council’s website in November 2018.
On Thursday, shadow energy minister Mark Butler and shadow attorney-general Mark Dreyfus demanded Mr Morrison refer the matter to NSW Police, asking for an investigation to be launched into the alleged forgery.
The pair threatened Labor would call on police to investigate if the PM did not make the request within 24 hours.
Mr Dreyfus’s letter to Commissioner Fuller calls on NSW Police to investigate whether there have been any breaches of the state Crimes Act, particularly whether the allegedly doctored document was used to influence Cr Moore in exercising her duties.
The shadow attorney-general said that if any offence was proven, the police should also look in to whether Mr Taylor or anyone in his office was aware of the situation.
Police do not have to agree to Mr Dreyfus’s request.