A man accused of bribing a City of Stirling employee with a bobcat to use on his hobby farm has been found guilty by a Perth jury.
Kim Lawrence Walter, 56, was fighting one charge of bribery in the District Court. The charge stemmed from a 2010 Corruption and Crime Commission investigation into a multi-million-dollar procurement scandal at the City of Stirling.
At the centre of the allegations against Walter was a friend and former City of Stirling buildings coordinator whose name has been suppressed.
The man’s name was suppressed following his suicide a day before he was to appear in a public CCC hearing into up to $5 million worth of misappropriated contracts.
His death sparked criticism at the time of the way the CCC handled its investigations.
Walter had given the man, who had also been his friend for about 22 years, a bobcat purchased by his business MMS.
During the trial, Walter told the court he bought the $43,000 bobcat in early 2005 for jobs he was doing for the Department of Defence.
He said the loader then went to his friend’s farm near York in mid-2005 because he had no where to store it and while it was there, his friend could use it if he wished.
The machine as serviced twice on the farm, once in late 2005 and then again in 2008. Both services were paid for by MMS.
The prosecution argued that Walter had actually given the loader to his friend to “curry favour” and ensure MMS continued to get contracts with the City of Stirling.
The jury was told between 2005 and 2008, MMS had 16 work orders with the City. The jurors were also shown photos of the bobcat being used on the farm in June and July 2005 and May 2006.
It took the jury four hours of deliberation to convict Walter.
He will be sentenced in February and remanded on bail until then, with supervisory and surety conditions. He also had to hand over his passport.
This article originally appeared on heraldsun