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Top Oz cop's taxpayer-funded business trip to India with ex-cheerleader raises eyebrows

June 11, 2011 - Canberra

Australian Federal Police commisioner Tony Negus took his ex-cheerleader secretary on a taxpayer-funded business-class trip to India and Singapore last year on police business.

Tamerra Mackell, 31, traveled with Negus, 47, to attend an Asia Pacific Group meeting on money laundering. The pair then went to India for the opening of the AFP's New Delhi office, the Herald Sun reports.

The pair also traveled on an official visit to Indonesia, Thailand and Cambodia in February.

The revelation has raised eyebrows, as it is unusual for secretaries such as Mackell to travel overseas for work.

The AFP said in a statement that, up until January this year, the commissioner did not have an executive officer or staff officer and Negus had taken his executive assistant to Singapore and India to provide "an administrative support role".

Mackell joined the AFP in January 2008 as executive assistant to the manager of specialist groups and was promoted to work as the commissioner's secretary when he began in the role in September 2009.

As executive assistant to the commissioner, Mackell manages the office environment and administration and liaises with other senior police, the AFP said.

Mackell was promoted in January to the newly created and more senior position of "executive officer", delivering "high-level executive support".


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