Palmer denies siphoning poll funds

Clive Palmer has denied that more than $2 million was siphoned from estranged business partner CITIC Pacific to pay for his big-spending election campaign blitz last year, labelling the claim "a complete untruth".

He claimed he was a victim of attacks by the "Murdoch press" intent on protecting Tony Abbott from scrutiny.

"Rupert Murdoch controls all of our media, that (the allegation) is just a complete untruth," Mr Palmer told Channel 7.

He also said the Chinese Government was attacking him because he was resisting its attempt to "bring workers over from China and have them paid Chinese wages".

As Mr Palmer's three senators officially began their six-year terms yesterday, the Prime Minister and Opposition Leader Bill Shorten refused to be drawn on whether the MP had questions to answer over the disputed funds.

"That is a matter between Mr Palmer and the people who are claiming that there is an issue," Mr Abbott said.

The Chinese state-owned miner has subpoenaed several companies as well as Mr Palmer personally as part of a hunt for more than $12.1 million it claims was withdrawn from an account set up to cover the administrative costs to Mr Palmer's company Mineralogy for managing the Cape Preston port in the Pilbara.

According to documents filed in the Queensland Supreme Court, CITIC is seeking invoices and contracts from Brisbane-based advertising agency Media Circus Network, which handled some of the Palmer United Party's advertising during last year's Federal election campaign.

The court documents show the agency cashed a $2.1 million cheque from a National Australia Bank account in Mineralogy's name on September 2, just five days before the election.

Another subpoena seeks details of a $10 million cheque paid to another Palmer company, Cosmo Developments a month earlier. Mr Palmer risks arrest if he fails to comply with the subpoenas.

The West Australian

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