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 Union Official in Black Lives Matter Scam
 Posted: Apr 10 2018, 06:58 PM

Dentus Chookus

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National Union of Workers official linked to fake Black Lives Matter Facebook page suspended

By Kristian Silva, Benjamin Sveen and staff

user posted image

Photo: Ian Mackay is one of two NUW officials suspended pending the outcome of the investigation. (Facebook: National Union of Workers)

A high-ranking Australian union official has been stood down amid claims he was involved in a fake Black Lives Matter Facebook page that collected hundreds of thousands of dollars in donations.

The Black Lives Matter page had almost 700,000 followers — dwarfing the movement's official page — before it was suspended by Facebook.

It allegedly collected money through online fundraisers and solicited more than $US100,000 ($129,000) in donations, according to an investigation by US media outlet CNN.

CNN reported some of the bank accounts where the money was transferred were in Australia and it was unclear how much was provided to genuine causes.

Two officials suspended

National Union of Workers (NUW) general branch vice-president Ian Mackay was linked to the fake Facebook page in the CNN report and is one of two NUW officials to have been suspended.

"The NUW has launched an investigation into claims made by a CNN report and has suspended the relevant officials pending the outcome of an investigation," NUW national secretary Tim Kennedy said.

"The NUW is not involved in and has not authorised any activities with reference to claims made in CNN's story."

The ABC has contacted Mr Mackay for comment.

It is understood he worked in Brisbane and now works in the union's Perth office.

The NUW's Facebook page said Mr Mackay was appointed to the honorary position of vice-president in November 2015.

It said Mr Mackay started "on the shop floor" as a rank and file member, and he would "fight for a fairer Australia with jobs all workers can count on".

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull said on Tuesday afternoon he was aware some "serious allegations" had been made.

"I haven't seen the details of that report, but any sort of dishonesty or fraud of the kind that's alleged is wrong — it would be illegal," he said.

user posted image

Photo: Mr Mackay worked in the NUW Brisbane office before he moved to Perth. (ABC News: Mark Slade)

Movement began after Trayvon Martin death

The Black Lives Matter activist movement originated in the United States, and campaigns against violence and racism towards black people.

It began as a social media campaign after the man who shot and killed 17-year-old Trayvon Martin was acquitted in 2013, and gained further prominence after the deaths of two other young black men in 2014.

The official Facebook page of the movement has about 320,000 followers — less than half of the former page allegedly run by Mr Mackay.

Photo: The Black Lives Matter protest movement has garnered a huge level of support in the US. (AP: Rich Pedroncelli)

On Twitter, a co-founder of the Black Lives Matter movement, Patrice Cullors, said she had complained to Facebook and Twitter about numerous fake accounts.

"These fake BLM [Black Lives Matter] accounts and fake BLM people literally stealing money off of Black Death is so stomach churning I can't even begin to explain," she wrote.

"We told [Facebook] over and over again to shut that shit down. And it wouldn't. Glad it's down now.

"It's so unfortunate folks were scammed by fake BLM accounts and people."
Facebook conducting its own investigation

Both pages had the title of "Black Lives Matter" — however the official page is distinguished by a "verified" tick on Facebook.

A Facebook spokeswoman said the social media site was also carrying out an investigation and would take "necessary action".

"We investigated this situation as soon as it was brought to our attention, and disabled the page admin for maintaining multiple profiles on the platform," the spokeswoman said.

CNN reported PayPal, Patreon, Donorbox and Classy had all removed fundraisers linked to the allegedly fraudulent account.

The Donorbox campaign page, which promoted the now-suspended Facebook page, remains online but donations have been disabled.

"Our mission is to raise awareness about racism, bigotry, police brutality and hate crimes by exposing, through social media locally and internationally, stories that mainstream media don't," the page said.

Its pitch to prospective donors also said money collected would go toward boosting coverage of stories "the mainstream media try to suppress through paid ads", and to providing support for victims of hate crimes.

In its investigation, CNN said Mr Mackay's name, email and phone number was registered to numerous websites tied to black rights.

The Facebook page he was accused of having ties to drove traffic to those websites, CNN said.

Local investigation requires a complaint, police say

Meanwhile, a senior Queensland police source told the ABC that any local investigation of possible fraud would require a complaint.

This could come from either people who donated money, or from a leader of the Black Lives Matter movement in the US.

However an alternative for local police would be to investigate possible money laundering under state or Commonwealth laws, which would not require a complaint.

There are dishonest, greedy people in all walks of life, but dishonesty and greed seems to be especially prevalent among union officials. Perhaps that's why so many end up as politicians!

“If life were predictable it would cease to be life, and be without flavor.” - Eleanor Roosevelt

“All of life is peaks and valleys. Don’t let the peaks get too high and the valleys too low.” - John Wooden
 Posted: Apr 10 2018, 10:13 PM

Supremo Poster

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a black mark against him
 Posted: Apr 11 2018, 07:24 AM

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There are dishonest, greedy people in all walks of life, but dishonesty and greed seems to be especially prevalent among union officials. Perhaps that's why so many end up as politicians!

Charles had said it all, no other comment necessary.

Living In An Elected Dictatorship
Flin's opinions and comments reflect his perception of the facts and not necessarily reality
 Posted: Apr 11 2018, 02:54 PM


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The National Union of Workers should not be confused with 'progressive lefties'.

The Union was formed by an amalgamation of a number of right wing unions aligned to the 'old guard' DLP supporters in the late 80s when the DLP was virtually non existent politically and their supporters started infiltrating Labor, National and Liberal Party branches.

To some extent the Labor Party has been able to minimize their influence, but the Nationals and the Liberals went like lambs to the slaughter.

Think Tony Abbott, Kevin Andrews, Joe Hockey, Barry O'Sullivan and Barnaby Joyce - all products of the NCC (National Civic Council) branch stackers.

Even my local member for Groom, John McVeigh is being threatened with losing pre-selection because he voted for SSM in Parliament despite the 'survey' indicating a 50/50 split in the electorate.

As a general rule - Lefties Good - Righties Bad - as in all aspects of political endeavour.

It's a tough gig being the only duck in the shooting gallery
 Posted: Apr 11 2018, 05:29 PM

Supremo Poster

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As a general rule - Lefties Good - Righties Bad - as in all aspects of political endeavour.

You are so funny Bill.

You should have been a comedian.

Everybody is Willing:
Some are willing to work, the rest are willing to let them!

The older I get, the better I was.
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