Department of Justice – corruption allegations concerning courthouse refurbishment contracts (Operation Yancey)

Year: 2016 Status: Completed

The ICAC investigated corruption allegations concerning the abuse of procurement processes by Department of Justice Asset Management Branch assistant director capital works, Anthony Andjic, in the awarding of contracts to refurbish NSW courthouses in 2013 (Operation Yancey).

In its report on the investigation, made public on 22 November 2016, the Commission makes findings of serious corrupt conduct against Mr Andjic, Shadi Chacra, Fayrouz Hammoud and Fatima Hammoud.

The ICAC is of the opinion that the advice of the Director of Public Prosecutions should be obtained with respect to the prosecution of Mr Andjic, Mr Chacra, Fayrouz Hammoud, Fatima Hammoud and Hakime Hammoud for various offences.

The Commission has made six corruption prevention recommendations to the NSW Department of Justice to help it prevent the recurrence of the behaviour that was examined in this investigation.

Findings of corrupt conduct

The Commission found that, during 2013, Anthony Andjic and Shadi Chacra engaged in serious corrupt conduct by agreeing that Mr Andjic would improperly exercise his official functions to financially benefit Mr Chacra. This agreement involved Mr Andjic arranging for the awarding of departmental contracts to Triton for the project management of the Camden and Picton courthouses upgrade project, and the departmental construction contracts for the Cessnock, East Maitland and Tamworth courthouses upgrades, and the Spring Street, Sydney, office refurbishment, and the awarding of contracts to SAFF for the project management of the Cessnock, Cowra, East Maitland and Gunnedah courthouses upgrades and a consultancy services contract.

Mr Andjic and Fayrouz Hammoud engaged in serious corrupt conduct by agreeing that Mr Andjic would improperly exercise his official functions to financially benefit Mr Chacra and Fayrouz Hammoud. This agreement involved Mr Andjic arranging for the awarding of the departmental construction contract to Triton for the Cessnock courthouse upgrade and the awarding of the departmental contracts to SAFF for the project management of the Cessnock, Cowra, East Maitland and Gunnedah courthouses upgrades and a consultancy services contract.

Mr Andjic and Fatima Hammoud engaged in serious corrupt conduct by agreeing to financially benefit Fatima Hammoud through the preparation and submission to the Department of an application by Fatima Hammoud for employment as a project development officer, which they both knew contained false information, with the intention that the false information would assist her to obtain a higher paying position within the then Department of Attorney General and Justice, and whereby Mr Andjic would improperly favour Fatima Hammoud in the selection process by recommending she be appointed to the position.

Recommendations for prosecutions

The Commission must seek the advice of the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) on whether any prosecution should be commenced. The DPP determines whether any criminal charges can be laid, and conducts all prosecutions. The Commission provides information on this website in relation to the status of prosecution recommendations and outcomes as advised by the DPP. The progress of matters is generally within the hands of the DPP. Accordingly, the Commission does not directly notify persons affected of advice received from the DPP or the progress of their matters generally.

The Commission is of the opinion that consideration should be given to obtaining the advice of the Director of Public Prosecutions with respect to the prosecution of:

  • Anthony Andjic, Shadi Chacra and Fayrouz Hammoud for offences under section 192E(1) and section 192G of the Crimes Act 1900, and of Mr Chacra and Fayrouz Hammoud with offences under section 193B(2) of the Crimes Act, of knowingly dealing with the proceeds of crime in relation to their dealings with the money improperly obtained from the Department
     
  • Fatima Hammoud with an offence under section 193C(2) of the Crimes Act of dealing with property where there are reasonable grounds to suspect the property is proceeds of crime in relation to her dealing with part of the money improperly obtained from the Department
     
  • Mr Andjic and Fatima Hammoud for an offence of conspiracy to commit an offence under section 192G of the Crimes Act in relation to the publishing of a false application for the position of project development officer
     
  • Mr Andjic, Fatima Hammoud and her mother, Hakime Hammoud for offences under section 87 of the Independent Commission Against Corruption Act 1988.

Updates

A brief of evidence was provided to the DPP on 21 April 2017. The Commission is awaiting the DPP's decision on whether proceedings will be taken.

Recommendations for disciplinary action

Anthony Andjic and Fatima Hammoud are no longer employed by the NSW Department of Justice. It is therefore not necessary to consider any recommendation in relation to disciplinary or dismissal action.

Recommendations for corruption prevention

The Commission has made the following six corruption prevention recommendations to the NSW Department of Justice to help it prevent the recurrence of the behaviour that was examined in this investigation.

Recommendation 1

 

That the NSW Department of Justice ensures that the implementation of its upcoming program of capital works contains a mechanism to periodically review the program to ensure that its projects remain consistent with its business strategy and operating environment.
 

Recommendation 2

That the Department of Justice finalises its restructure of Asset Management Services as a priority and recruits staff to permanently fill the associated positions.
 

Recommendation 3

That the Department of Justice completes the implementation of its proposed electronic document and records management system.
 

Recommendation 4

That the Department of Justice develops a framework for governing its procurement activities that:

• assigns governance roles and responsibilities for different types of procurement, such as goods and services procurement and construction procurement

• has mechanisms to detect non-compliance with procedural controls, such as the mandated use of pre-qualified suppliers.
 

Recommendation 5

That, when developing its procurement governance framework, the Department of Justice reviews its resourcing of procurement governance to ensure that this resourcing is sufficient to successfully fulfil the associated procurement governance roles and responsibilities.
 

Recommendation 6

That, as part of the implementation of its new enterprise resource planning system, the Department of Justice reviews its procure-to-pay processes to ensure that:

• there is scrutiny around the creation of new vendors, especially if they are newly established companies

• system controls are designed to make certain an individual who certifies performance of service is familiar with the work in question.

Response to ICAC recommendations

The action plan posted below has been provided by the NSW Department of Justice in response to the ICAC's corruption prevention recommendations. Its publication here is to show the status of the response. It does not constitute approval or endorsement by the Commission.

Final progress report

Action plan - 12 month progress report

Action plan

 


Media Releases
Witness Transcripts

View all transcripts associated with this investigation. The Commission makes every effort to post the daily transcripts of its public inquiries on its website by 8:00 pm each day when possible. If the Commission sits later than 4:00 pm, the daily transcripts, particularly the afternoon session, may not be available until the next working day.

Filename Size KB Date pp. Time
22-06-2015_Operation_Yancey_transcript_pp00001-00053_from_10.12_am_to_13.04_pm.pdf 207 22/06/15 00001-00053 10.12_am_to_13.04_pm
22-06-2015__Operation_Yancey_transcript_pp_000054-00111_from_2.05pm_to_4.25pm.pdf 221 22/06/15 000054-00111 2.05pm_to_4.25pm
23-06-2015_Operation_Yancey_transcript_pp._00112-00165_from_10.09am_to_1.04pm.pdf 206 23/06/15 00112-00165 10.09am_to_1.04pm
23-06-2015_Operation_Yancey_transcript_pp._00166-00218_from_2.04pm_to_4.28pm.pdf 198 23/06/15 00166-00218 2.04pm_to_4.28pm
24-06-2015__Operation_Yancey_transcript_pp_00219_-_00293_from_1.34_pm_to_4.29_pm.pdf 283 24/06/15 00219_-_00293 1.34_pm_to_4.29_pm
25-06-2015_Operation_Yancey_transcript_pp00294-00370_from_10.06_am_to_1.30pm.pdf 291 25/06/15 00294-00370 10.06_am_to_1.30pm
25-06-2015__Operation_Yancey_transcript_pp_00371-00395_from_2.34pm_to_3.27pm.pdf 95 25/06/15 00371-00395 2.34pm_to_3.27pm
29-06-2015_Operation_Yancey_transcript_pp_00396-00465_from_10.08_am_to_1.02_pm.pdf 271 29/06/15 00396-00465 10.08_am_to_1.02_pm
29-06-2015_Operation_Yancey_transcript_pp_00466-00519_from_2.01_am_to_4.03_pm.pdf 212 29/06/15 00466-00519 2.01_am_to_4.03_pm
30-06-2015_Operation_Yancey_transcript_pp_00520-00589_from_10.01_am_to_12.46_pm.pdf 273 30/06/15 00520-00589 10.01_am_to_12.46_pm
30-06-2015__Operation_Yancey_transcript_p00590-00643__from_1.48_pm_to_3.59_pm.pdf 212 30/06/15 00590-00643 1.48_pm_to_3.59_pm
01-07-2015_Operation_Yancey_transcript_pp_00644-00720_from_10.03_am_to_1.04_pm.pdf 288 01/07/15 00644-00720 10.03_am_to_1.04_pm
02-07-2015_Operation_Yancey_transcript_pp_00720-00784_from_10.09_am_to_1.12_pm.pdf 242 02/07/15 00720-00784 10.09_am_to_1.12_pm
02-07-2015_Operation_Yancey_transcript_p_00785-00830_from_2.18_am_to_3.58_pm.pdf 183 02/07/15 00785-00830 2.18_am_to_3.58_pm
03-07-2015_Operation_Yancey_transcript_pp_00831-00904_from_10.06_am_to_1.16_pm.pdf 280 03/07/15 00831-00904 10.06_am_to_1.16_pm
03-07-2015_Operation_Yancey_transcript_pp_00905-00958_from_2.17_am_to_4.09_pm.pdf 202 03/07/15 00905-00958 2.17_am_to_4.09_pm
Exhibits

Yancey Exhibit List (PDF)

Download exhibits associated with this investigation below.

Public notices