Select Committee on Standards and Privileges Minutes of Evidence

Examination of Witness (Questions 520 - 533)



  520. Where Mr Zaiwalla and Mr Vaz were.
  (Mr Brown) They were still there, yes.

  521. I think you said this earlier. If this goes beyond what you meant to say, do say. You either gave the envelope with the money to Mr Zaiwalla, who gave it to Mr Vaz, or you gave it directly to Mr Vaz.
  (Mr Brown) I honestly cannot remember.


  522. I take it there was no receipt given.
  (Mr Brown) No.

Shona McIsaac

  523. Can I just check whether Mr Zaiwalla introduced Mr Vaz as a Member of Parliament to you?
  (Mr Brown) I cannot recall. He may well have done, but not necessarily.

  524. So nothing rang any alarm bells in your mind that this may be highly irregular?
  (Mr Brown) It was none of my business. Alarm bells did not ring in my mind at any time Mr Zaiwalla asked me to withdraw money from the bank. Most times I knew about it because he was going away the following day, or whatever. But if he had somebody in his room with him and he wanted to give them money or whatever, he would just ask me to write a cheque out and get the cash.

  525. You said it was on rare occasions that you were asked to draw money out for someone rather than for Mr Zaiwalla personally.
  (Mr Brown) Yes. Nine times out of ten I would know from events that were taking place what it was for. It was always going to be charged down to him, but there were occasions when he wanted money for other purposes that I had no knowledge of, but I was going to charge it down to him.

Mr Foster

  526. Was it on this occasion that you marked in the counterfoil who the money had gone to?
  (Mr Brown) I do not recall. The counterfoil would normally just have "drawings" written on it.

  527. You mentioned earlier or it was put to you that it was to do with setting up an office.
  (Mr Brown) Yes.

  528. Do you know where that office was to be?
  (Mr Brown) No.

  529. You do not know anything about that at all?
  (Mr Brown) No. The conversation was solely that it was for the purposes of setting up Mr Vaz's parliamentary office. Whether that was here or in his constituency, I have no idea.

Mr Campbell-Savours

  530. Can I just get it clearly on the record: you do not recall handing the money personally to Mr Vaz?
  (Mr Brown) No, I do not.

Mr Foster

  531. I think you said you may or may not have done. Is that the position?
  (Mr Brown) I do not recall giving it to him specifically, to one or the other.

  532. The final question I wanted to ask was this. The Sunday Telegraph, you say, promised you anonymity if you made comments to them. Has any member of the media, and if so, who, made any promise of incentive or benefit should you make a statement to them?
  (Mr Brown) No. The only newspaper I have come into contact with is the Sunday Telegraph.

  533. They have never offered you any benefit beyond that?
  (Mr Brown) Other than anonymity, no.

  Chairman: Thank you very much for coming along and answering our questions today.

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