Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: The People's Choice

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  • Che Tibby,

    craig,

    the privy council indicate clearly that important evidence, like robin bain (allegedly) raping his daughter, shortly followed by an incestuous relationship wasn't introduced to the trial. the daughter had threatened to out the relationship shortly before the murders occurred.

    they seem to find it strange that robins mental state was not put before the jury, but david was repeatedly characterised as "weird".

    the back of an envelope • Since Nov 2006 • 2042 posts Report Reply

  • Jonty,

    Che:

    this case smacks of detectives taking a look, deciding who the murderer was, and then building a case to convict him.

    A la Scott Watson -- no alibi? Tough luck. Mind you, when the media and the public are baying for a suspect and the police are under pressure for a result then it can be anyone within arm's reach without an alibi who gets his collar felt. I'm sure there are others inside who are victims of the same flawed system.
    However, that doesn't excuse the disgraceful performance by members of the NZ judiciary. As Karam said to Geoff Robinson on Morning Reort this a.m: "How would you feel if it was your son in the hands of the two Appeal Court judges who turned down his last appeal" -- both of whom are now sitting pretty on the Supreme Court.
    It's worth remembering that the Privy Council, last year, overturned three decisions of the NZ Appeal Court -- and yet it's from this small gene pool that the Supreme Court judges are chosen.
    While I lament the fact that we no longer have recourse to the Privy Council for a final decision, the next best thing would surely be a Pacific Supreme Court encompassing the finest legal minds in our region. I wouldn't go so far as to say the necessary intellectual stamina is lacking in NZ, merely that we're too small a pool to have the necessary detachment.

    Katikati • Since Mar 2007 • 102 posts Report Reply

  • Morgan Nichol,

    Pfft. Best Blog? I mean, congratulations and all, you know I dig your site Russell, but Public Address still isn't a blog. Hard News is a blog.

    (And my hunch is that Hard News is what 90% of the folk that voted for "Public Address" were actually voting for.)

    Auckland CBD • Since Nov 2006 • 314 posts Report Reply

  • Emma Hart,

    Pfft. Best Blog? I mean, congratulations and all, you know I dig your site Russell, but Public Address still isn't a blog. Hard News is a blog.

    Best quasi-autonomous blog collective?

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 4651 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    Pfft. Best Blog? I mean, congratulations and all, you know I dig your site Russell, but Public Address still isn't a blog. Hard News is a blog.

    Correct. Not much I can do about it though. They could fix it by calling the category "Best Blog Site".

    I did however enter our individual blogs in the new Qantas Media Awards blog category ...

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22817 posts Report Reply

  • Mark Easterbrook,

    Congratulations to Russell, Damian, Jolisa, David, Fiona, Graham, Tze Ming, Keith, David, Che (if he still scraped in to the awards period ;), anyone who's contributed thru Speaker, those nice boys at Cactus Lab, and all of you who chip in on Public Address System.

    I spend far to much time on PA, when I should be working, because it's the place I get 90% of my brain-stimulation these days. Keep it up!

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 262 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    Best quasi-autonomous blog collective?

    Resistance is futile. You will be assimilated.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22817 posts Report Reply

  • merc,

    THEATRE!

    Since Dec 2006 • 2471 posts Report Reply

  • merc,

    Oh that was to (not for) Morgan.

    Since Dec 2006 • 2471 posts Report Reply

  • Emma Hart,

    Best quasi-autonomous blog collective?

    Resistance is futile. You will be assimilated.

    Checking my comment count, I'm pretty sure I already have been.

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 4651 posts Report Reply

  • hamishm,

    maybe Blair is going to try to do an Al Gore to reinvent himself as something else entirely

    Span, The Beeb said last week that he might be going to become a roving person for religious tolerance. Getting churches talking to each other and such. Some unkind people might make a reference to a staged performance, but not I.

    Since Nov 2006 • 357 posts Report Reply

  • hamishm,

    Also, well done PA. It is an essential read.

    Since Nov 2006 • 357 posts Report Reply

  • Gabor Toth,

    Though I don't have a legal background, I have always followed the law and legal processes with keen interest. I was really uncomfortable in the way this government made a major change to our legal system by abandoning the right of appeal to the Privy Council with the stroke of pen. Getting rid of it seems to have been tied up with a kind of nationalistic fervour and the belief that a bunch of Poms in London are not capable of fully comprehending NZ legal cases. While I would not belittle the upper echelons of the NZ justice system, not only are the Law Lords extraordinarily smart people, their isolation from NZ makes them far more "blind" to external influences and more independent than any NZ court could ever be.
    The NZ courts also seem to find it incredibly difficult to admit that they can make mistakes and I'll be interested to see how they react following the Privy Council's decision. One question is - would a Supreme Court of New Zealand have made the same judgement on the Bain appeal as the Privy Council? Somehow I think not.
    On similar lines, the Solicitor General is defying a select committee call for the Peter Ellis case to be fast-tracked to the Privy Council and I wonder if that case will ever get there. The conclusion is again - the Solicitor General is trying to protect the NZ legal system from having to admit that mistakes were made.
    I also note that National, Act and NZ First called for a two-thirds required referendum back in 2003 regarding the question of whether the right of appeal to the Privy Council should be abandoned. In light of the present situation, it will be interesting to see if the Nats pick this policy up again.

    Wellington • Since Dec 2006 • 137 posts Report Reply

  • Nobody Important,

    this case smacks of detectives taking a look, deciding who the murderer was, and then building a case to convict him.

    S.O.P.

    expat • Since Mar 2007 • 319 posts Report Reply

  • Don Christie,

    Morgan - maybe, but every "blogger" here is an excellent writer. I cannot think of one whose posts I don't look forward to reading.

    Big thing here in Wellington is GOVIS and I know Che and others presented there.

    Some videos posted at on the GOVIS site. See Tibby, Green and Lane in the flesh.

    We had the pleasure of entertaining one of the key note speakers, Dr. Quentin Stafford-Fraser of ndiyo.org fame yesterday evening whilst Russell was reveling. Ndiyo is essentially developing low cost/low computing options for most of the world.

    Quentin's interests and ideas are varied and novel. He has a blog too, which brings me nicely back OT.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 1645 posts Report Reply

  • Che Tibby,

    S.O.P.

    i'm sure on is needed, but it appears as if the police have ignored or discounted important evidence because it did not meet fit their picture. that tends to open them to accusations of "framing" bain, doesn't it?

    and don! if you were there you should have said hi!

    and merc! the cheque's in the mail. please have object dart commercially viable? wicked.

    the back of an envelope • Since Nov 2006 • 2042 posts Report Reply

  • merc,

    See it's working already! But can you stand the silliness?

    Since Dec 2006 • 2471 posts Report Reply

  • Che Tibby,

    i thought i'd have to pay extra for silliness!

    where do i sign?

    the back of an envelope • Since Nov 2006 • 2042 posts Report Reply

  • Span .,

    Please excuse my ignorance (which is not of course confined to the subject matter of my question) but what is Blog Boosters? *blush*

    Auckland, NZ • Since Nov 2006 • 112 posts Report Reply

  • Jonty,

    Nobody Important: S.O.P -- whassat?

    Katikati • Since Mar 2007 • 102 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    While I would not belittle the upper echelons of the NZ justice system, not only are the Law Lords extraordinarily smart people, their isolation from NZ makes them far more "blind" to external influences and more independent than any NZ court could ever be.

    OTOH, the Privy Council did us no favours at all in the Clear vs Telecom interconnection dispute. It overruled our Court of Appeal and gave Telecom what amounted to a monopolist's charter. That decision hurt New Zealand.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22817 posts Report Reply

  • Nobody Important,

    Nobody Important: S.O.P -- whassat?

    Standard Operating Procedure!

    this case smacks of detectives taking a look, deciding who the murderer was, and then building a case to convict him.

    (me) ~ S.O.P

    expat • Since Mar 2007 • 319 posts Report Reply

  • merc,

    Che, I'll need to talk to my people, but I see no problem with cultural synergies, but R. you know, he's twitchy, it's the Guinea Pig in him. Hamishm is up for anything, but you know we'll put together a prop and my PA will get back to you.
    SPAN, Riddley handles new business, he's, er, indisposed right now (in the straw more like), but our people will be in touch, are you familiar with the Gestetner?

    Since Dec 2006 • 2471 posts Report Reply

  • Che Tibby,

    SOP. or in this case, "sub-standard operating procedure".

    the back of an envelope • Since Nov 2006 • 2042 posts Report Reply

  • Kyle Matthews,

    Hey, my weird-o-meter started glowing when the Bain house was torched. I'm no legal eagle, but you do have to wonder whether any appeal is ever so slightly hampered when the crime scene is reduced to a pile of ash.

    Yeah, seeing it on the news last night reminded me that this happened only a couple of weeks after the murders. Obviously the police had finished with it then, but it's surprising that they would allow a crime scene of 5 murders to be destroyed before at least the main trial was done with.

    I'm astounded that the defence allowed it to happen, given the subsequent debates about footprints and glass lenses etc. Does anyone know/remember if David Bain chose for it to happen? I presume it was his house so he must have consented.

    A la Scott Watson -- no alibi? Tough luck. Mind you, when the media and the public are baying for a suspect and the police are under pressure for a result then it can be anyone within arm's reach without an alibi who gets his collar felt. I'm sure there are others inside who are victims of the same flawed system.

    I spoke to a police officer who was somewhat involved with this case while it was in process. He basically said "The guy is guilty, we know he's done this, he's just done a bunch of things to remove evidence (cleaning and painting the boat etc) so it's going to be hard to convict him."

    The way they had to get him was by eliminating everyone else that could have done it and then stacking up indirect evidence against Watson. The lengths they had to go to were fairly impressive - they built a database of every boat that was in that harbour over a 24 hour period using (among other things) photos collected from people on boats and walking around the tracks (this was how they proved that the water taxi driver was wrong about the type of boat that he took them out to). They contacted all the owners and eliminated all the other people that were there. Unlike CSI etc, sometimes convictions come from manpower and gruntwork.

    Did they get it right? Who can ever say that definitively? Sometimes they're wrong, but I suspect in murder cases, 90soemthing% of the time they get the right person.

    Since Nov 2006 • 6243 posts Report Reply

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