Bottle of Penfolds brings down Aussie politician
16th April, 2014 by Rupert Millar
The premier of New South Wales in Australia has resigned after “forgetting” to declare he had received a bottle of 1959 Penfolds Grange as a gift from a suspect in a corruption case.
According to the BBC, Barry O’Farrell received the rare wine from a businessman called Nick Di Girolamo, whose company, Australia Water Holdings, is under investigation.
O’Farrell told a corruption inquiry he had never received the wine from Girolamo in 2011 shortly after becoming premier of the Australian state as was alleged but then was forced to admit he had when the investigators revealed they had a note from O’Farrell to Girolamo thanking him for the AU$3,000(£1,680) bottle of wine.
O’Farrell admitted he’d had a “massive memory fail” and announced his resignation from the Liberal Party in Sydney today (Wednesday 16 April).
He told a press conference: “I do accept there is a thank you note signed by me and as someone who believes in accountability, I accept the consequences of my action.
“I still cannot explain either the arrival of a gift that I have no recollection of, or its absence which I certainly still cannot fathom. But I accept the consequences in an orderly way.”