The refugees left, but the millions kept coming for Nauru contractor

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EXCLUSIVE: Documents reveal how Australian business Canstruct made $442m servicing refugees on Nauru and when boats stopped, the money didn’t.

Australia News, Australia Headlines

Australian company Canstruct was paid more than $300 million by the federal government to care for refugees and asylum seekers on Nauru last financial year, even as the number of people on the island dwindled to a few dozen and a diminishing number of services were being delivered to them.

Company chief executive Rory Murphy co-owns the company with his brothers Adrian and Daniel, and their father Robin. Retired Victorian Court of Appeal judge and integrity expert Stephen Charles said the almost two billion-dollar Nauru contract raised serious concerns, particularly “the extent to which very substantial donations from a particular tenderer led to that tenderer being granted an enormously valuable contract”.

Former home affairs minister Peter Dutton declined to comment, but has acknowledged previously meeting senior executives of Canstruct, including Rory Murphy, three times between 2017 and 2019 at Liberal National Party functions. Over the same period, the number of services Canstruct offered to the refugees and asylum seekers steadily fell.

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