Former Queensland senator Fraser Anning’s travel records are being subpoenaed from the Department of Home Affairs, as bankers attempt to locate him overseas to serve him with bankruptcy papers.
Bendigo Bank subsidiary ABL Nominees is seeking to bankrupt the former Queensland senator over an unpaid debt of $185,000, understood to be related to a failed agribusiness scheme.
Under Australia’s bankruptcy rules, a creditor must serve a person who is the subject of the proceedings with a petition outlining the grounds for the bankruptcy action.
In a hearing in the Federal Circuit Court in Adelaide, the bank’s lawyer, Samuel Black, said Mr Anning was believed to be in the US, but remained an Australian citizen.
“We just simply do not know where Mr Anning is in the United States [and] when he is returning,” Mr Black said.
The court was told ABL Nominees had this week applied for bankruptcy proceedings against Mr Anning’s wife, Fiona, who is believed to be with her husband in the US.
Like her husband, Mrs Anning is yet to be served with the petition.
Coinciding with the legal action, Mr Anning lodged a separate complaint with the Australian Financial Complaints Authority, which Mr Black said was resolved this week.
It is unknown what the complaint was about.
Mr Anning’s case to return to court
It is understood two of Mr Anning’s children live in the US, with one daughter, Raia, living in South Lake Tahoe, in California.
Another daughter, Titian, recently moved to Scottsdale in Arizona to open Barista Brothers, a coffee and gelato shop.
Australian Electoral Commission records show Mr Anning’s Conservative National Party is registered to a home address in Gladstone, Queensland.
Property records show the house is owned by Raia and her husband.
Mr Anning, who lost his seat at the 2019 federal election, had no legal representation in Thursday’s hearing.
The case will return to court next month.
Second time bankruptcy orders sought
This is the second time Bendigo Bank has sought a bankruptcy order against Mr Anning.
Mr Anning reportedly settled the first case in October 2017, a month before he entered Parliament to replace disqualified One Nation senator Malcolm Roberts.
Mr Anning’s controversial views were often in the limelight during his time in parliament, including linking the Christchurch massacre to Muslim immigration and courting the support of far-right groups.
He made headlines after being struck by an egg by a teenager while speaking to the media.