Famed Australian concert promoter Andrew McManus walked free from the Sydney District Court on Friday after telling a court he lied to police about $702,000 cash.

As the Sydney Morning Herald reports, police followed the money, found in a room at Sydney’s Hilton Hotel in 2011, back to an international drug syndicate. It is not alleged that Mr McManus was part of a drug syndicate. Its leader, American Owen ‘O-Dog’ Hanson, was sentenced to 20 years just three months ago.

McManus pleaded guilty last year to attempting to pervert the course of justice by lying to police when questioned in regards to the money in 2012. In an interview at the time he stated: “These are not the proceeds of crime, these are the proceeds of Andrew McManus. It’s my 700 large.”

In 2015, a group of men, including McManus and underworld figure Craig Haeusler, were arrested over efforts to obtain the return of the cash from the police. An alleged plan was made by Haeusler in which McManus would claim to be the source of the money to the police, receiving a loan of $200,000 from it in the process, a loan which McManus claimed would be used to fund a tour by Lenny Kravitz.

Police dropped the charges of criminal participation against McManus on Friday, after a judge found that McManus showed signs of rehabilitation, having claimed previously that at the time of his lie to police, he was suffering from depression, and affected heavily by alcohol and drugs.

While the Crown prosecutor asked for McManus to serve jail time, Judge Mark Williams sentenced him to a term of imprisonment of 20 months, with the Judge indicating that he proposes to order that the sentence of imprisonment be served by way of an ICO in the community.

 

Editor’s Note: On 1 April 2017 and 7 April 2017, The Industry Observer published two articles about Andrew McManus which contained factual errors.

For the avoidance of doubt we confirm that it has never been alleged that Mr McManus was part of a drug syndicate. Further, Mr McManus has never been charged with fraud and he has never claimed ownership of $700,000 cash.

The Industry Observer unreservedly apologises to Mr McManus for any offence and hurt caused by the publication of these factual errors.