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Former South Gippsland councillor pleads guilty

Former South Gippsland Shire councillor Andrew McEwen faced Wonthaggi Magistrates’ Court today (20 September 2019) to answer one charge of misuse of position.

The matter was proven but the court did not apply a conviction. Mr McEwen was placed on a 12 month good behaviour bond and ordered to pay a $1500 contribution to a community organisation and $15,000 towards prosecution legal costs.

The Inspectorate alleged that, in January 2018, Mr McEwen provided a Tarwin Lower resident with information. At the time, the resident was involved in a proceeding against South Gippsland Shire Council in the Supreme Court. The Inspectorate argued that the defendant acquired the information by virtue of his former position as a councillor.

Mr McEwen was elected as a councillor for Strzelecki Ward in October 2012 and dismissed with South Gippsland councillors following a bill by the Local Government Minister in June 2019.