Bevan Chuang says Len Brown paid for hotel rooms himself,
or they were offered for free. Photo / Greg Bowker
Bevan Chuang is confident Len Brown will be cleared by a
spending inquiry in the wake of their extra-marital affair,
saying he paid for everything out of his own pocket.
However, she believed that some of the rooms he booked for
the pair were offered free of charge by hotel managers.
Auckland Council chief executive Doug McKay yesterday
announced an inquiry into Mr Brown's spending in the wake of
the sex scandal.
Ms Chuang said she met Mr Brown three times at the Langham,
SkyCity Grand and Hilton hotels for sex after collecting the
keys to the rooms from reception at the Town Hall.
A spokeswoman for the Hilton said the hotel would not give
complimentary rooms to Mr Brown, while a spokeswoman for
SkyCity Grand would not comment on guests for privacy
reasons. A spokesman for the Langham did not return a phone
A mayoral spokesman said any expenses Mr Brown incurred
relating to the relationship were paid out of his own pocket,
including private accommodation.
The 32-year-old former mistress said: "He sometimes takes
some time off and goes to hotel rooms, and quite a few times
managers would tell him 'it's fine, it's on us. We can
organise somewhere private for you'.
"He often feels uncomfortable and wanted to go down and pay
but usually the manager would [insist] 'no no, it's on us'."
The rooms also came with antipasto food platters and nuts,
Ms Chuang believed the rooms were offered free to Mr Brown so
that he could "talk about" and "recommend it" for council
Mr Brown would check-in at the hotel himself and then arrange
for a spare room key to be delivered back to the council in
an envelope addressed to Ms Chuang.
Ms Chuang, who also speaks Cantonese and Mandarin, claimed Mr
Brown used the mayoral car and driver to pick up and drop her
off on two occasions when he took her to council dinners as
During their two-year-affair, Mr Brown had bought her several
gifts including a bottle of Chloe perfume, a black bra and
g-string and a bottle of sunblock.
He also bought her mother a Rugby World Cup All Blacks DVD.
Ms Chuang, who has said that she regretted going public about
the affair, is backing Mr Brown in the inquiry and believed
everything he spent on her was "from his pocket" and "above
The mayoral spokesman said Mr Brown was not commenting on
individual allegations relating to the relationship, but
stressed "any expenses he incurred, he paid for out of his
own pocket. That includes private accommodation".
"The mayor's car is for both private and public use, just
like most company car arrangements. He often gives lifts to
colleagues, friends and associates to and from meetings,
functions and engagements in a reasonable way."
In other developments yesterday, it emerged that Ms Chuang
has a criminal conviction for logging into the email of the
former head of the Auckland Museum.
She was charged with unlawfully accessing a computer system,
pleaded guilty and fined $1000.
Mr Brown also confirmed he provided a reference for Ms Chuang
to help her get a job at the council-run art gallery in July
2011 - two months after Ms Chuang says the affair began.
The mayor's office said the office was contacted by email by
the Auckland Art Gallery on July 4, 2011 and asked to provide
a reference in relation to the application.
"On July 5, at the mayor's request, the mayor's diary manager
responded by email to say that the mayor highly recommended
"The diary manager also asked in the email that the person
call her to discuss. As the staff member left some time ago
we're not sure whether the call was returned and whether she
discussed the reference further," the office said.
A document carried by a Government minister yesterday
appeared to anticipate the resignation of Auckland Mayor Len
Local Government Minister Chris Tremain was spotted holding a
page with the headline "Lines for Mayors resignation" in
A spokeswoman said that the document was prepared for the
minister in case he was asked questions about the mayor
during Question Time.
Mr Tremain said that Mr Brown's future was not his
responsibility and he was only concerned about legislation
which related to local government.
The document listed the situations in which a mayor could be
removed from office: "For example if they are absent from
four consecutive council meetings without leave, are
convicted of a serious offence, are ruled incapable of
holding office by a judge, or are disqualified from being an
elector under the Electoral Act.".
It also listed the process if a mayor was to stand down,
saying that a byelection was required to fill a vacancy.
Yesterday, the mayor's office said Mr Brown intended to
continue in the job.