ICAC court case: Jonovski, Esen not guilty

Sacked Wollongong councillors Kiril Jonovski and Zeki Esen have been found not guilty of misleading a corruption investigation about a meeting they had with developer Frank Vellar.After a two-day hearing in Downing Centre Local Court, Magistrate Carolyn Barkell this afternoon found Mr Jonovski, 66, not guilty of providing false or misleading evidence to an Independent Commission Against Corruption inquiry in February 2008. At the inquiry, Mr Jonovski had denied meeting Mr Vellar at the Flame Tree Cafe on October 18, 2006, despite giving evidence that he met Mr Vellar twice at the cafe. He initially told the ICAC he met Mr Vellar in December 2006 and February 2007, but later corrected his evidence to say the meetings were in October and November 2007.Ms Barkell earlier dismissed a second charge against Mr Jonovski that he had provided false or misleading information in a statement to ICAC, after she ruled that the prosecution had not established its case against Mr Jonovski.Mr Esen, 44, was found not guilty of the same two charges relating to the Flame Tree Cafe meeting.In October 2008, ICAC Commissioner Jerrold Cripps found both men had engaged in corrupt conduct and he recommended criminal charges against them and nine other individuals.Mr Esen is facing one further charge of providing false or misleading evidence to the inquiry, along with another councillor Frank Gigliotti, 50. A hearing into that charge is expected to begin in Sydney tomorrow. Other charges against Mr Gigliotti will be heard on a date to be set. FULL STORY IN FRIDAY’S MERCURY
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