Explosive allegations levelled at Whitsunday MP
ACCUSATIONS about five complaints by women against Member for Whitsunday Jason Costigan were aired in Queensland Parliament this afternoon.
Member for Kawana Jarrod Bleijie used his chance to speak in Matters of Interest time in Parliament to outline five allegations levelled against Mr Costigan, including the initial one which saw him expelled from the Liberal National Party on February 1.
Mr Bleijie told Parliament of the initial complaint where Mr Costigan went to stay at a remote farm house in country Victoria, arriving at 1.30am.
The occupants of the house left early the next morning and only Mr Costigan was home when their granddaughter arrived to collect some of her belongings.
The 18-year-old, who was not long out of high school, did not know who Mr Costigan was.
Mr Bleijie said Mr Costigan, who was "half naked having just had a shower” met her in the living room before following her into a bedroom.
"He closed the door behind her when they entered the room. He touched her on the back and stroked her hair,” Mr Bleijie said.
"He told her she was pretty. He told her he liked young girls.”
Mr Bleijie said Mr Costigan also told the girl she should come to the Whitsundays to visit him and he would pay for her flights and pressured her into taking selfies with him.
"It was an intimidating and frightening experience for her,” Mr Bleijie said.
Parliament heard how the girl frantically gathered her belongings, dropping a pair of her underwear in the process.
"He picked up the fallen underwear. He turned it over in his hands and told her he liked it,” Mr Bleijie said.
"His presence, demeanour and conduct were very scary.
"Initial complaint from the mother said she feared she would be raped on the remote property by the Member for Whitsunday.”
Mr Bleijie said since Mr Costigan was expelled from the party earlier this month, numerous complaints had come to light.
He told how another young woman made a formal complaint of "harassment of a sexual nature and stalking” to the LNP about the member.
He also spoke how another woman said she witnessed the member assault her friend at a music festival.
"He approached her from behind and rubbed himself against her,” he said.
Mr Bleijie said yet another woman said she has screenshots of messages Mr Costigan sent to a then 16-year-old girl "which contained sexually explicit material and sexually suggestive lines about how she made him feel”.
Another told of his leering and staring at a 17-year-old waitress to the point that she hid every time he entered the café, Mr Bleijie said.
Mr Bleijie said the young woman in the first complaint was so scared by the conduct of the Member for Whitsundays that she has made a complaint to the police.
In a united front against Mr Costigan, Member for Chatsworth Steven Minnikin also used his time in the Parliament Matters of Interest to speak about how Mr Costigan was expelled from the LNP for conduct which did not meet the standards set by the party leader.
He also described Mr Costigan's actions in releasing a photo to the media of himself and the initial complainant as "contemptible” and applauded Opposition Leader Deb Frecklington's handling of the matter.