Melbourne: Tania Zaetta will fight charges levelled against her for not registering her charity, Peace for the Children.
This is not the first time that Zaetta, who has acted in films like Bunty aur Babli and Salaam Namaste in Bollywood, has found herself at the centre of a controversy regarding her charity work.
In 2008, when she had toured Australian Defence Force bases in Afghanistan and Iraq with other entertainers there were accusations in the media of her having sexual relations with someone from the Australian Special Air Service Regiment.
She had denied the claims and the matter was later settled out of court.
Now, the Office of Fair Trading in Australia has alleged that the fund-raising enterprise launched by Zaetta called for donations for war-affected children while not being registered as an official charity.
Her solicitor Jason Murakami told Southport Magistrates Court on November 21 that his client will contest the 15 counts of unlawfully applying for support for an unregistered charity.
“My client will not be pleading guilty,” the Courier Mail quoted Mr Murakami as saying.
“I am in the dark, Miss Zaetta is in the dark…. We require a brief to see whether or not the Crown even have a case,” he said.
The charity’s co-founder, company director Grant Hilton, told the court he will plead guilty to two charges, one as a director and one as an individual, in relation to the charity.