CANBERRA -- The infamous and long-running scandal surrounding former Speaker Peter Slipper has surfaced again.
Federal police in Queensland have conducted a search of Sunshine Coast hinterland properties associated with former political staffer James Ashby as part of its ongoing investigation into the Slipper scandal.
It is understood the AFP officers have searched Ashby’s home and at least one other property for material relating to the Liberal National Party and Government figures including Industry Minister Christopher Pyne and senior Minster Mal Brough, now Special Minister of State.
Officers were seen photographing documents in one of properties.
The AFP has released a statement on the search.
“The AFP can confirm search warrants were executed at residences on the Sunshine Coast today (Tuesday 17 November 2015),” the statement read.
“As these warrants relate to an ongoing investigation, it is not appropriate to comment further.”
Ashby has addressed waiting media, saying "I have nothing to hide."
In 2012, Ashby accused his then boss of sexual harassment.
In an interview with 60 Minutes last year, Brough admitted to using Ashby and another staffer in 2012 to illegally obtain copies of the disgraced former Speaker’s diary.
The diaries were subsequently leaked to the media.
Brough easily succeeded Slipper in the Federal seat of Fisher at the general election in September 2013 after Slipper stepped down from the role of Speaker in disgrace.
Labor’s Graham Perrett, who has been pursuing Opposition concerns with the Slipper scandal, wants any LNP involvement explained.
“There are some very serious questions to be answered here,” Perrett said.
“It’s time they each came clean once and for all about what their roles were.”
Mr Slipper is no longer under any investigation, but he was accused by Ashby of sexual harassment and was widely mocked for lurid text messages which ended up being published.
Ashby is now assisting serial political candidate Pauline Hanson in her latest bid to return to federal politics.