One Nation donations went to Pauline Hanson’s bank account: reports

One Nation leader Pauline Hanson is under pressure to reveal how party donations were spent.

One Nation leader Pauline Hanson is under pressure to reveal how party donations were spent. Photo: AAP

One Nation leader Pauline Hanson is facing further questions over the party’s affairs after it was revealed thousands of dollars of donations were directed into her own personal bank account.

Senator Hanson’s bank account was listed on the party website for three years before it was removed three months ago, the Daily Telegraph reported.

The Queenslander’s Senate campaign received $2558 from 14 donors, according to her 2016 election returns form filed with the Australian Electoral Commission.

The One Nation website says donations will be spent on office administration expenses, election registration fees and campaign material.

Pauline Hanson

Pauline Hanson and James Ashby have both been criticised over One Nation’s operations. Photo: AAP

Senator Hanson’s 2016 returns form does not disclose any spending on advertising or campaign material during the election campaign.

The party’s former treasurer Ian Nelson told the Telegraph there was a lack of oversight over the account and that there was “no way” officials could have monitored its activities.

Before it was taken down, the account was listed under the heading ‘Pauline Hanson Senate Donations’ and appeared alongside a separate account for party donations.

The personal account is registered to a bank branch in East Maitland, New South Wales, while the account for party donations belongs to a branch in Queensland, where One Nation is registered.

In a statement, Senator Hanson’s chief of staff James Ashby said: “All money donated to Pauline Hanson’s One Nation has been recorded and reported in accordance with the AEC and (Electoral Commission Queensland) guidelines.

“Since the appointment of (party treasurer) Greg Smith in August of 2016, a number of former One Nation accounts have been shut down, with records provided to relevant electoral bodies.”

One Nation did not respond to questions from The New Daily about how the money was spent or whether the bank account was subject to any oversight.

The revelation is the latest controversy to hit One Nation as it faces an Australian Electoral Commission investigation over the use of light plane during the 2016 campaign.

Earlier in the week, Senator Hanson was forced to respond to a leaked recording that cast doubt on the party’s claims around the source of the plane.

The conversation between Senator Hanson and Mr Nelson appears to confirm the plane came from Victorian developer Bill McNee, rather than Mr Ashby, as One Nation claims.

The AEC is investigating whether the party broke electoral laws by not disclosing the plane as a donation.

Mr McNee has denied he funded the plane.

Last week, a separate tape was leaked in which Mr Ashby appeared to suggest the party fleece its own candidates and the Queensland taxpayer by inflating the cost of election materials.

Mr Ashby has complained to the police about the leaks, while One Nation’s Queensland candidates previously told the The New Daily they were not concerned that party officials had considered ripping them off.

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