Australian government officials fired an Parliament staff member Monday after photographs and videos appearing to show legislators performing sex acts inside Australia’s Parliament House in Canberra were leaked to Australian media outlets.
The photos and videos were allegedly taken in 2019 but recently leaked to the Australian newspaper and Australia’s Network 10 news which published the images on March 23.
“One of the images shows a man sitting at a desk and exposing himself, with a copy of the Parliament House rule book behind him,” News Corp Australia, which publishes the Australian, reported of the leaked photos. “Another showed a male pointing to the desk of a female Liberal MP [Member of Parliament], before performing a solo sex act on it.”
Other images were so lewd that Australian network television refused to air them in a TV broadcast of the report Monday evening.
The whistleblower, identified only as Tom, told Australia’s Network 10 news that other top government staffers allegedly brought male and female sex workers into the parliament building’s prayer room “for the pleasure of Coalition MPs.”
“Government staffers and even MPs would also often use a small room on the upper level of Parliament House — known as the prayer or meditation room — as a place to have ‘a lot’ of sex,” Tom said, according to News Corp Australia.
“I can probably say there is very little meditation or prayer going on in that room,” the whistleblower said, “confirming that he himself has used the room for that purpose.” He claimed that “a considerable amount of conservative staffers” were engaging in the sex acts.
Tom said that while he did not think the “disgusting, disgraceful, privileged” staffers had “broken any laws,” he considered them “morally bankrupt.” The whistleblower further alleged “a group of coalition staffers routinely swap explicit photos of themselves” via a private messaging group, claiming he has “received so many that I’ve just become immune to it.”
“The reports aired tonight are disgusting and sickening,” Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison said in a statement Monday. “My government has identified the staff member at the center of these allegations and has terminated his employment immediately.”
“The people who come to work in this building are better than this,” Morrison further said. “The actions of these individuals show a staggering disrespect for the people who work in Parliament, and for the ideals Parliament is supposed to represent.”