Victoria’s opposition leader, Matthew Guy, and his former chief of staff have been referred to the state’s corruption watchdog over allegations of trying to circumvent political donation laws.

The Victorian Electoral Commission on Wednesday referred its Matthew Guy and Mitch Catlin investigation to the Independent Broad-based Anti-corruption Commission (Ibac) for further investigation, it revealed on Thursday.

The electoral commissioner, Warwick Gately, said his organisation had exhausted its attempts to fully investigate what may constitute a breach of Victoria’s funding and disclosure laws under the Electoral Act.

“It’s my responsibility to ensure compliance with all electoral laws and ensure all participants are held to the same standard,” he said in a statement.

Catlin resigned in August after it was exposed he allegedly asked a billionaire Liberal donor to make more than $100,000 in payments to his private marketing company.

A contract for the proposed arrangement was sent to Guy’s personal email address, but he has categorically denied it was signed or agreed.

Guy has repeatedly said he and the Liberal party have fully cooperated with the electoral commission and denied exploiting a legal loophole to stymie the probe.

In its statement on Thursday, the electoral commission said: “Despite public statements to the contrary, the VEC has not received full cooperation from those connected to its investigation.

“While the VEC is not in a position to allege wrongdoing based on the allegations it has sought to investigate, the possibility of offences … have also not been able to be discounted.”

Speaking to reporters on Thursday, Guy said he was not sure the VEC’s statement about non-cooperation referred to him.

I’ve done nothing wrong … I’ve provided everything that was asked to me. I’ve done that once. I’ll do that again,” Guy said.

“I provided everything … weeks ago. You can’t provide things that don’t exist.”

The revelation comes as the Liberals refer the issue of group ticket voting and deals done by so-called “preference whisperer” Glenn Druery to the integrity watchdog.

A covert video exposing the backroom preference dealings was leaked to the Herald Sun by the Angry Victorians party.



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