New South Wales Deputy Premier John Barilaro will reportedly lose his driving licence after a string of infringements in the lead-up to his decision to take mental health leave last month.
The Sydney Morning Herald and Daily Telegraph revealed on Friday the Nationals leader will lose his licence over recent offences, including speeding in a ministerial car.
His office subsequently confirmed he was caught speeding and using his mobile phone while driving a ministerial car.
A spokeswoman for Mr Barilaro said he had only just received the fines and would pay them immediately.
“As is absolutely appropriate the Deputy Premier will pay any fines and cop all penalties associated with the driving infringements,” a spokeswoman said.
The infringements were passed to Mr Barilaro by the Department of Premier and Cabinet, which controls ministerial cars.
It is understood Mr Barilaro’s office has questioned how details of the fines were leaked to the media and is concerned a data breach has occurred within a government agency.
His office is considering requesting a police investigation into how the information became public.
The offences round out a turbulent time for Mr Barilaro who threatened to end the Coalition in September over a controversial koala protection policy.
After Premier Gladys Berejiklian issued him and his Nationals colleagues an ultimatum, he withdrew his threat to move to the crossbench but announced he would be taking a month of mental health leave.
His spokeswoman said the traffic infringements had nothing to do with his decision to take time off.
“The driving offences in question did not contribute to his decision to take leave,” she said.
“The Deputy Premier will return from leave in the coming weeks.”