Australian Federal Police Raid Offices of Seven


SYDNEY: Seven West Media CEO Tim Worner has condemned an Australian Federal Police raid on the company's offices as "overkill," saying that he finds it "disturbing" that they were using search warrants to access news and corporate records.

The AFP brought in around 30 police and eight squad cars to Seven's offices at Pyrmont and at Pacific Magazines and at lawyers' offices in relation to possible proceeds of crime investigation into dealings with Schapelle Corby. The investigation stems from a rumored tell-all deal with Corby, who has been paroled for drug trafficking. Seven Network denies that it agreed to pay Corby for an interview about her time in jail.

"These raids came as some surprise to us, given we fully cooperated with requests made of us by the AFP last week including ongoing correspondence between the AFP and our lawyers, all of which were responded to," said Worner.

"The AFP has previously asked for information on Schapelle Corby and any contract we may have entered into, and we provided all the information requested from us and instructed our lawyers to provide any additional information they might have. The AFP did not seem to accept that we have not reached an agreement or understanding with Schapelle Corby.

"We want to emphasize that at all times we have fully co-operated with the AFP in this matter. A raid on our offices at Pyrmont and at Pacific Magazines and at our lawyers’ offices involving around 30 police and eight squad cars to find information we have already provided seems like overkill to say the least. But what is most disturbing is to also seek to use search warrants to access all of our news and corporate records. This is without justification and quite possibly unprecedented for a media organization.

"We see any interference in fair reporting and newsgathering as regrettable. Seven has responded fully and comprehensively to all requests for information. We have a history of that type of co-operation. We also have a history of providing and breaking news stories and reporting matters of public interest. And Seven remains committed to that."