Langbroek to repay cash spent on hotels 20mins from home

Acting Opposition Leader John-Paul Langbroek speaking against the Palaszczuk government's plans for the VLAD Laws. Photo Daniel Harkin / Daily Mercury
Acting Opposition Leader John-Paul Langbroek speaking against the Palaszczuk government's plans for the VLAD Laws. Photo Daniel Harkin / Daily Mercury Daniel Harkin

GOLD Coast MP John-Paul Langbroek has agreed to pay back all expenses he claimed in his own electorate. 

The news comes after News Regional Media revealed Mr Langbroek slugged the taxpayer for more than $800 worth of hotel bills - to stay less than 20 minutes drive from his home. 

"In the interests of being accountable and transparent, I have written to the Clerk of the Parliament to inform him I will be reimbursing the accommodation claims made within my own electorate.

"All claims were made within parliamentary guidelines and assessed by parliamentary officers."

The news comes after Langbroek appeared on his sister's radio show to apologise for making the claims last night. 

Appearing on Kiis FM's Hughesy and Kate show - which his sister co-hosts with comedian Dave Hughes - the Surfers Paradise MP said apologised for claiming hotel expenses while staying 20 minutes from home but did not indicate he'd pay the money back.

On Monday News Regional Media revealed Mr Langbroek claimed $270 worth of travel expenses to stay at Main Beach on September 5, 2015 - about a 20-minute drive from his house.

Then again on February 13, 2016 he claimed another $270, to stay in Broadbeach which is a 10-minute drive from his residence.

Finally on June 18, 2016 Mr Langbroek claimed $270 worth of travel - again to stay in Broadbeach.

This evening Mr Langbroek laughed frequently during an interview where he blamed changes in the rules saying this led him to make the questionable claim.

"Look I do understand that people have said well that just doesn't…You can't do that, you can't have a house nearby and then stay at a hotel, so, I won't be doing it again," Mr Langbroek said.

"And I'm really sorry to people who (inaudible) the wrong thing, even though according to our rules it was okay."

Earlier he and his sister hit out at social media comments which had insinuated the reason the claims were made was because Mr Langbroek was unfaithful to his wife.

One of the comments in question was read out by Mr Hughes during the interview: "I don't care if @JPLangbroek is a swinging, open marriage fornication machine but do it on his own dollar not taxpayer's."

To which Mr Langbroek responded: "Well like where does that come from?"

Mr Hughes responded:"I can tell you where it comes from, it comes from you being at hotels when your family home is just down the road!"

"That's where it comes from people think well he's not going to be at that hotel with his wife 'cause she's at home, you know, looking after the home fires. That's where that comes from."

Mr Langbroek later affirmed his wife would sign a statement saying she was with him on the nights in question.

His sister then reflected on a family birthday party at her home yesterday: "We were having a birthday party at my house for one of his daughter's and my son Arty."

"And when we called John-Paul we thought it was all going to be good times and he was very despondent. But he was with Stacey and at the time it did not even occur to me that it was hookers."

To which Mr Lanbroek responded: "It's not hookers! No hookers!"

Towards the end of the interview Mr Hughes asked Mr Langbroek:"Now if we dig deeper - I'm not going to dig deeper but other people love digging - is there anything else in the closet? Right now you can tell us what else have you done?"

To which Mr Langbroek responded: "No, I haven't done anything, I'm a good guy."

IN CASE YOU MISSED IT: MP claimed for travel, while minutes from home

Gold Coast MP John-Paul Langbroek poses for a selfie at a Rotary charity ball. Source: Gold Coast Rotary website
Gold Coast MP John-Paul Langbroek poses for a selfie at a Rotary charity ball. Source: Gold Coast Rotary website

READ A FULL TRANSCRIPT OF THE INTERVIEW BELOW

 

Kate Langbroek: I have to say though I was relieved when I heard hundreds.

David Hughes: Now Katie that's when the internet goes nuts…

KL: I have to say though I was relieved when I heard hundreds.

DH: Hundreds of dollars?

KL: Yeah hundreds.

DH: Yes, there's no doubt in the scheme of things it's a very minor…

KL: Well, not with politicians. As we know often it can be thousands. It can be thousands of dollars for a helicopter ride, or a chartered flight or a lala.

DH: But it's not just that though, it's the other things, like Tweets like this one…

KL: Can we say hello to John-Paul (Langbroek) first so he knows…

John-Paul Langbroek: Yeah, hi guys. Who have we got there? Jack is it?

JH: Yes.

JPL: Hello Jack.

KL: Don't try to charm

JPL: Please don't think ill of me, don't think ill of me.

JH: Not at all.

KL: I'm gonna say this, I've known you my whole life and I have only ever known you to be at times irritatingly honest, I've never known you to be anything…

JH: Now before we respond to that claim can I just read out one of these Tweets from Col Smith, he says: "I don't care if @JPLangbroek is a swinging, open marriage fornication machine but do it on his own dollar not taxpayer's."

JPL: Well like where does that come from?

KL: I don't know.

JH: I can tell you where it comes from, it comes from you being at hotels when your family home is just down the road. That's where it comes from people think well he's not going to be at that hotel with his wife 'cause she's at home, you know, looking after the home fires. That's where that comes from.

JPL: We were at three charity events together and stayed at this hotel.

JH: And so you, she will back you up on that? She will sign a statement that she was also with you at the hotel

JPL: (laughs) Yes, if you need her to.

KL: So last night when - because it was John-Paul's birthday yesterday and also we were having a birthday party at my house for one of his daughter's and my son Arty. And when we called John-Paul we thought it was all going to be good times and he was very despondent. But he was with Stacey and at the time it did not even occur to me that it was hookers.

JH: It's not though.

JPL: It's not hookers! No hookers!

KL: Right and no freebies either.

JH: So it was three nights at $280 a pop at a hotel when you had just done a charity event so that's the actual answer, isn't it?

JPL: Yeah, well that's right. But look I do understand that people have said well that just doesn't…You can't do that, you can't have a house nearby and then stay at a hotel, so, I won't be doing it again. And I'm really sorry to people who (inaudible) the wrong thing, even though according to our rules it was okay.

KL: That doesn't sound like you're sorry that actually sounds like a justification.

JPL: I won't be doing it again.

KL: Don't use that tone, don't use that tone. Try again.

JPL: I'm sorry and I won't do it again.

KL: It's terrible, it must have felt weird when you were doing it. And the rules say you can.

JPL: And the rules changed. The rules said…for the first ten years I was in they said you couldn't do it. And then they said, you can.

KL: Why would they change that? For people who have huge electorates? Or for you? And your $810.

JPL: Well they changed it for everyone but it's weird. Like when you have car allowances they give you a different level depending on the size of the electorate but they don't for hotel stays.

JH: Yep, I get it, absolutely. Now if we dig deeper - I'm not going to dig deeper but other people love digging - is there anything else in the closet? Right now you can tell us what else have you done?

JPL: No, I haven't done anything, I'm a good guy.

JH: You haven't bought cars or anything, you don't own properties that the taxpayer has paid for? - I spose through your pay you have.

KL: (Laughing) I think that's permitted. To buy things through your own pay.

JH: So there is taxpayers money you've used for food isn't there?

JPL: What was that taxpayer's money I've used for food?

JH: Yeah like when you've been paid by the taxpayer…

Laughter

JPL: Yeah there's money I use for my mortgage and electricity bills - yeah well I do that.

Laughter

KL: Yes well you sound unhappy about that as if that should be an entitlement.

JH: I think you've done the right thing here and I think people are…I believe they are - we're not going to the phones because they're in meltdown.

KL: Anyway John-Paul you just keep your nose clean because you know nobody likes a snout in a trough.

JPL: (Laughs) No I know.

KL: No one likes it.

JPL: No I agree.

KL: I know you do. That's why you won't do it again.



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