NSW Police say they cannot find any evidence a forged document that Energy Minister Angus Taylor used to politically attack the Sydney Lord Mayor was downloaded from the City of Sydney website.
Mr Taylor used a falsified document that he claimed had been “drawn directly from the City of Sydney’s website” in September 2019 to attack Lord Mayor Clover Moore over climate change policies.
In a letter to Ms Moore, Mr Taylor attacked the council over the document that he claimed outlined $15.9 million in domestic and international travel expenses in a single year.
The letter was leaked to The Daily Telegraph.
However, the figures Mr Taylor relied on from the council’s annual report were wrong and were actually closer to $6000.
The Energy Minister told parliament in October the document had not been forged by himself or a member of his staff and “was drawn directly from the City of Sydney’s website. It was publicly available”.
But NSW police have confirmed metadata did not “provide any evidence of the document being downloaded by Mr Taylor’s office”, casting doubt on the origin of the document.
In NSW budget estimates, NSW Police Commissioner Mick Fuller was asked whether police had established when the Minister or his office downloaded the documents from the City of Sydney website.
In a recently published response, Mr Fuller said investigators could not confirm when or if Mr Taylor or his office downloaded the document.
“The metadata did not provide any evidence of the document being downloaded to Minister Taylor’s office,” Mr Fuller said.
Mr Taylor has previously claimed that neither he or his staff altered the document, and said there was evidence that multiple versions of the document existed on the City of Sydney’s website.
Shadow federal attorney-general Mark Dreyfus asked NSW Police to investigate the matter in October.
It was then referred to the Australian Federal Police for consideration but later dropped.
A spokesman for Mr Taylor said the Minister provided a statement to NSW Police and also responded to written questions.
“Minister Taylor did not refuse to be interviewed by the NSW Police as media reports suggest,” the spokesman said.
“The NSW Police have stated in their response to questions on notice that cooperation was provided throughout their enquiry.”