'News offered me a bribe'
FEDERAL police are investigating allegations that News Ltd offered a then-serving federal senator a ''special relationship'' involving favourable coverage if he crossed the floor on a vote of financial interest to the company.
The investigation was sparked by a statement given to them by the former Nationals senator, Bill O'Chee, who alleges a News Ltd executive said he would be ''taken care of'' if he crossed the floor.
The Herald has seen the nine-page statement, written by Mr O'Chee last month, after he was approached by a federal police agent inquiring into the matter.
The inquiry has been secret until today due to sensitivities around those involved.
Mr O'Chee, a Queensland senator between 1990 and 1999, has had a long and difficult relationship with the Murdoch press, which spent years reporting on his large parliamentary superannuation payout and an acrimonious split with his first wife.