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Opposition dismisses legal advice clearing Beattie

Extract from Australian Broadcasting Corporation - ABC Online, on 14 March 2005

The Queensland Opposition has dismissed legal advice that clears Premier Peter Beattie of personal wrongdoing in the alleged bribery matter at Palm Island.

The Crime and Misconduct Commission (CMC) is investigating whether Mr Beattie did anything wrong in offering the Palm Island council a package, including waiving an $800,000 debt, in return for attending the opening of a new community centre and other things.

The question hinges on whether the Premier got any personal gain.

He has released advice from the solicitor-general that says there was political benefit, but not personal.

"I'd always had a clear conscience on this," Mr Beattie said.

But Deputy Opposition Leader Jeff Seeney is not convinced by the solicitor-general's opinion.

"Crown Law are essentially the government solicitors," Mr Seeney said.

The CMC says the solicitor-general's advice makes no difference to its investigation.

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