AN Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC) inquiry into several deals for Awabakal land has been delayed until further notice after a key player applied for a discontinuation citing "a denial of procedural fairness".
ICAC's Operation Skyline had been scheduled for hearings for the remainder of this week and next week, but Commissioner Peter Hall QC on Wednesday morning directed those dates be vacated.
Disgraced former tax commissioner Nick Petroulias was the only witness listed to appear this week.
Commissioner Hall told the hearing that Mr Petroulias had made an application for the proceedings to be discontinued last Thursday.
"Mr Petroulias' written application to discontinue runs to some 22 pages," Commissioner Hall said.
"It raises matters alleging a denial of procedural fairness. it will require time for my consideration."
The commissioner noted that no mention was made on February 8, when the proceedings were re-listed for directions, that a discontinuance application was coming.
Commissioner Hall said he had decided the inquiry had to be adjourned despite the disruption to others appearing "in order to enable me to fully and properly consider the application that has been made".
Operation Skyline is an inquiry into four deals - one attempted - involving Awabakal land. It began in March 2018, a year after a special investigation by the Newcastle Herald.
The inquiry was designed to examine whether any Awabakal board director acted dishonestly or breached their duties in relation to the series of proposals.
The hearing has previously heard that the deals were brokered between 2014 and 2016, with the most lucrative worth $30 million.
Mr Petroulias is accused of playing a "central role" in the deals ICAC is investigating to determine whether they were a sham to benefit Mr Petroulias, his lawyer partner Despina Bakis, and Awabakal board members Richard Green and Debbie Dates.
A date for Mr Hall to deliver his decision on Mr Petroulias' application and his reasoning will be advised.
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