Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: Doing over the witness

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  • izogi, in reply to Sacha,

    I'll never look at Hell Pizzas the same way again.

    Wellington • Since Jan 2007 • 1141 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel,

    I never liked Hell Pizza's marketing approach
    - but that's no reason to take someone's life apart, just because you can.
    I really hope Slater ends up doing time inside, he's made 'outside' pretty unsavoury to suit himself... or someone.

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 7950 posts Report Reply

  • Euan Mason,

    According to The Herald, Slater appears to have tried to arrange a prison hit.

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11339962

    Is there enough evidence for a prosecution? What are the legal implications of this type of info?

    Canterbury • Since Jul 2008 • 259 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel,

    Interesting legal judgement re data 'theft' here:

    ...was found guilty earlier this year of accessing a computer for dishonest purposes after downloading Tag Oil (NZ) Ltd's geotechnical data from the company's computer.
    ...
    But in quashing those convictions the Court of Appeal found that data obtained from the computer was not "property".

    (My emphasis)

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 7950 posts Report Reply

  • Joe Wylie, in reply to izogi,

    That’s the way I grew up in NZ, with Constable Keith and Sniff on What Now, making sure I knew I could always trust the community police officer.

    And there was Crimewatch, aka Maoriwatch. Once NZers had got over the embarassment of their own accents on TV, poor old Ian Johnstone's premium BBC-ish tones were reduced to keeping the natives in their place.

    flat earth • Since Jan 2007 • 4593 posts Report Reply

  • Grant McDougall, in reply to Ian Dalziel,

    I never liked Hell Pizza’s marketing approach – but that’s no reason to take someone’s life apart, just because you can.

    Agreed. But while Slater is odious, Hell Pizza aren’t exactly, er, saints, either. A couple of years’ ago on Campbell Live (iirc) there was a story on a couple that’d bought into the franchise and somehow ended up in dispute with it.

    The franchise responded with some pretty heavy legal threats, etc. It was real "using a sledge-hammer to kill an ant" stuff. Hell Pizza came across as rude, inconsiderate bullies. The couple were very, very pressured and stressed to a completely unnecessary extent.

    Dunedin • Since Dec 2006 • 760 posts Report Reply

  • Alfie, in reply to izogi,

    That’s the way I grew up in NZ, with Constable Keith and Sniff on What Now, making sure I knew I could always trust the community police officer.

    I grew up in fifties Dunedin at a time when we all trusted the local cops. They walked the beat past our house most days and they were always friendly and stopped for a chat. They were good people.

    Several years later when I started working in television, NZBC (or BCNZ or whichever iteration was in fashion at the time) produced a documentary series on women using an all-female crew including the venerable Margaret Moth on camera. The series interviewed a number of abused women including the ex-wife of a senior officer in the local drug squad. That didn't go down well in certain circles and soon after, Margaret's flat was busted by the drug squad. Her neighbours described a group of men wearing shorts and walk socks laughing their heads off as they turned the place over.

    And they made a right mess of the place. Drawers were turned upside down, her reserve parachute was popped up the hallway and walked over, windows were propped open, the front door was left ajar. They didn't find any drugs. Oddly, they missed some empty buddah sticks which were sitting in the fireplace, but nobody said they were good at their jobs.

    Each local station produced a 15 minute cop show back then and John Keir presented the Dunedin version. He took a crew to Margaret's flat, filmed the mess and intended to run a story that week. Until he received a call from the Police saying they'd found "a bag with white powder" in the flat and if the story ran, it might just turn out to be heroin. The story was canned.

    Some people are lucky enough to live their whole lives without coming up against the dirty side of law enforcement. But once you have personal experience of Police corruption, your perception of the law changes forever.

    Dunedin • Since May 2014 • 1437 posts Report Reply

  • izogi, in reply to Ian Dalziel,

    Interesting legal judgement re data ‘theft’ here:

    Wow. An initial 30 months imprisonment for downloading data from an employer seems like a lot, but that’s also without knowing context. From this earlier report, it sounds like some of the context was that he (allegedly) downloaded a massive amount of data from his employer immediately before going to work for a competitor. Plus we’re talking about oil companies, supposedly with hundreds of millions of dollars at stake and likely endless cash to throw at lawyers, so maybe there was more going on.

    It’d be interesting to know the legal opinion on what happened. Browsing s249 of the Crimes Act I see it refers to obtaining “property” by accessing a computer, even though the Act’s own definition of property doesn’t clearly seem to include anything intellectual. If that’s what he was initially prosecuted for obtaining ‘property’ then maybe that’s how it doesn’t fit, and also perhaps the fact that he was an employee at the time he supposedly took the data also complicates things. S249 also seems to include a list of other stuff you could dishonestly obtain with a computer besides ‘property’. That’s all just my own layman’s interpretation, though.

    Wellington • Since Jan 2007 • 1141 posts Report Reply

  • izogi, in reply to izogi,

    It’d be interesting to know the legal opinion on what happened.

    Here's some more info. This might be more like an employment dispute than a direct relationship to the Slater stuff.

    Wellington • Since Jan 2007 • 1141 posts Report Reply

  • Marc C, in reply to Chris Waugh,

    While I take your point and accept that my earlier comment was in part over the top, I think we have reason to be very concerned about the system we still have in New Zealand. Indeed questions are justified, re how much of a democracy we still are, given that much we witness make it appear to be more and more of a plutocracy, with a dose of meritocracy.

    That is also the very reason that so many do not bother to vote anymore, and local elections prove this more than general elections, but the trend is highly concerning. I witness it first hand at present, seeing how the process of an appointed "independent hearing panel" going through the submissions on the Proposed Auckland Unitary Plan (PAUP) is playing out.

    Unless submitters have a competent legal representative, a consultant, an expert witness or lawyer acting for them, going through the complex, highly bureaucratic, legalistic bits of the PAUP and proposed changes, they are basically "stuffed".

    That means the remaining submitters, that can argue their cases, and that survive a "clearing out" of less "valid" or well argued submissions, are mostly such as large organisations, businesses, Auckland Council itself, and developers and the likes. They will decide how the PAUP will look like in the end, and what the city will look like in years to come.

    Also having had experience with submissions before Parliament's select committees, we have a similar trend there. Individuals have little clout, and the mere casting of a vote means damned little, as parties there are, are generally working "within the system", that means they adapt to the bureaucracy and expert arguing and submitting, so they become part of an elitist kind of system that runs New Zealand and most states now.

    And I read today in Auckland's Central Leader (08 Oct.), about Sky City having changed a plan for a convention centre, agreed on with the last government, by adding a large hotel to it, which nobody had previously agreed on. Yet Steven Joyce and the government seem keen to let them get away with it. In his opinion piece even Pat Booth asks at the end: "Do we in fact live in a democracy?"

    Given all that, and such actions against Nicky Hager, I think we are indeed in for worse things to come, unless people take a stand against all this. Sadly most choose to shrug things off and focus on "number one issues and interests".

    Perhaps it is time to have something of an "outer parliamentary opposition" movement of size, to put the pressure on, to mobilise people in large numbers, who have become disillusioned with what goes on. That is also a reason why such fringe politicians like Colin Craig and his referendum ideas seem to get more support now, so many have lost faith in the system, which is run by the top percentage of vested interest people, and is also supported by middle class property owners, who distance themselves from the lesser folk of about half the population, not able to afford their own home.

    That is basically the kind of angle I come from, when making comments questioning the "democracy" in NZ, which to some has become a "demockeracy".

    Auckland • Since Oct 2012 • 437 posts Report Reply

  • nzlemming, in reply to Marc C,

    Unless submitters have a competent legal representative, a consultant, an expert witness or lawyer acting for them, going through the complex, highly bureaucratic, legalistic bits of the PAUP and proposed changes, they are basically “stuffed”.

    It's the same with the RMA "Boards of Inquiry", especially around the Roads of Notional Importance (Basin flyover being the notable exception). No lawyer means they pretty much ignore you except to tick the box that say "this many members of the public presented submissions so hurrah! consultation".

    Waikanae • Since Nov 2006 • 2935 posts Report Reply

  • DexterX, in reply to Alfie,

    But once you have personal experience of Police corruption, your perception of the law changes forever.

    You're not wrong - leads me to bit of a rant.

    I witnessed in the mid to late 60s my parents treatment by police after they phoned in a break in at the local bowling club - an alarm had gone off - Dad was home on a break from night shift - the Police asked Dad to go and have a look to see if the burglars were still there - he did, they weren't, and he then went back to work.

    Later well after midnight - the police kicked our front door in and interrogated my mother, who was heavily pregnant at the time, in our lounge as to where my father was - they wanted to arrest him for the break in. I can remember seeing Mum shaking with fear - BTW - Dad was a schoolteacher who did part-time work on weekends - it wasn't him.

    I watched in the late 70s the result of a car "stop and search" - the Police beat up a mate who got lippy and wanted to know what the basis for the stop and search - the car we were in matched the description of another car that had been involved in an incident - the Police were largely angry that they had got the wrong car - this incident had involved several Police cars and including some D's.

    I used to be very guarded in dealing with the police - now I just don't give a shit within reason - the law, the courts, the local authorities, and the police are in essence a law unto themselves - a lumbering colossus and you don’t matter.

    I helped someone as a "Mackenzie Friend" who was wrongly accused - the Judge dismissed the case and the Police reported me to the Law Society who sent me a letter asking me to explain myself. I admitted that I did more than just help I did all the typing - he couldn't type did not own a PC - and researched the law for this bloke - he presented his own case - however - to do what I did, assist someone, is against the law/illegal - if you for another person type or create a document that can be produced by a lawyer and it is presented in court you are breaking the law - I was given a warning and have been told not to do this again.

    The bloke was lucky the Judge could see that the police were wrong - it was dismissed, not on the basis of the argument presented but on the basis the Police had taken too long to bring the prosecution.

    The less one is involved with "the man" the better - you are little and expendable and they are mighty - you only have one voice every three years and that is your vote - best use it.

    People like Nicky Hager are incredibly brave – good on them - we needed him to publish Dirty Politics - lets see which way the colossus is moved, if at all.

    I still respect the Police and Public Officials - a part of respecting all people.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1224 posts Report Reply

  • tussock,

    If word gets around this thread could get really long.

    So I always like to drop into these conversations that if some thug beats the snot out of you or breaks all your stuff out of spite, it's bloody nice to have a police force that will take offence on your behalf and go sort them out, and then later also take them to court for you.

    Assuming someone can point them in the right direction and they happen to like the look of you more than said thug.

    The thing is the police really need to be quite gentle about even that, on account of how they've so often got the wrong end of the stick along the way. Not to mention all the victimless crimes that so easily fill in their charge sheets for them. Otherwise we end up with a lot more victims of the police and the law than of any actual thugs.

    Which is where you get the "jokes" about resisting arrest and assaulting an officer by bruising his knuckles with your face. Or bleeding on his uniform as a bit of a shocker from the US recently.

    Since Nov 2006 • 610 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to Grant McDougall,

    Agreed. But while Slater is odious, Hell Pizza aren’t exactly, er, saints, either. A couple of years’ ago on Campbell Live (iirc) there was a story on a couple that’d bought into the franchise and somehow ended up in dispute with it.

    The franchise responded with some pretty heavy legal threats, etc. It was real “using a sledge-hammer to kill an ant” stuff. Hell Pizza came across as rude, inconsiderate bullies. The couple were very, very pressured and stressed to a completely unnecessary extent.

    Bear in mind that Slater’s vendetta on Blomfield was apparently at the behest of Blomfield’s former Hell Pizza partners, who were still running the business. It’s a very tainted brand, in my opinion. But taking it out on the poor bloody local franchise-holder seems harsh too. I just don’t like the product.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22848 posts Report Reply

  • Jack Harrison, in reply to Russell Brown,

    This would be massive headline fodder if you or another blogger did it.

    It’s severe full on intimidation. An attempt to basically stress a citizen out until they are so mentally strained and their life is so tarnished publically that they , excuse the pun, live in hell.

    N.Z is small. Matt has already suffered enough. Empathy for him, and I like(d) the pizzas. The private sector needs dignity too. This is too far.

    wellington • Since Aug 2014 • 296 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Russell Brown,

    Slater’s vendetta on Blomfield was apparently at the behest of Blomfield’s former Hell Pizza partners

    One of whom is apparently friends with.. Carrick Graham.
    #dirtybusiness

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19740 posts Report Reply

  • Jack Harrison, in reply to Sacha,

    #dirtybusiness#weaklaw#KarlRovehero#defamatationfree# #onlinebullying#beenprettyobviousforalongtime#money-ego#nationalprty

    wellington • Since Aug 2014 • 296 posts Report Reply

  • Sofie Bribiesca, in reply to Jack Harrison,

    Can I get a hashtag? No, cos I don't do that but I know a couple of things for sure. Slater is slime. The people he sets out to hurt don't deserve it. Slater can not be trusted. Money is the root of all evil. Follow that and you will find answers everytime.
    The NZ Police would be better placed to get over the wish to join the FBI and as in the KDC case, don't try jump the gate when it's already open. Doh!

    here and there. • Since Nov 2007 • 6796 posts Report Reply

  • Jack Harrison, in reply to Sofie Bribiesca,

    On a sober citizen platform. What has happened is so fucking unproductive to good policy making and civil discourse that the N.Z blogosphere is tainted.

    It will have to be herded into the public legal eye for clarification of how this mess happened.

    wellington • Since Aug 2014 • 296 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel,

    Who do these people think they are?
    More reasons to suspect the honesty of police - just great!

    Waikato police covered up the existence of a corrupt cop who stole drugs from a police station evidence safe.
    The theft is believed to be the reason a Black Power gang member changed his guilty plea in a drugs case in 2011.
    But it was only after the Waikato Times approached police following a three-month investigation that Waikato police district commander superintendent Bruce Bird last week admitted the incident occurred.
    The theft involved up to $5000 of methamphetamine (P) which went missing from a police evidence safe at Huntly Police Station between June 2010 and January 2011.

    How can they then demand or expect 'Honesty' or openness from Joe Public when their own example is set so far below what is expected, and contrary to what they charged with doing on behalf of said Public...?

    One bad cop = they are all bad, until proven otherwise - this scenario can't end well!

    Looks like the new boss is going to be spending even more time apologising to people - perhaps, one day they might start looking at the reasons and causes rather than the symptoms...

    This is all on National's watch too, I might add...

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 7950 posts Report Reply

  • Kumara Republic,

    On the one hand, this Granny editorial is wary of the police raid on Hager…

    Editorial: Hager raid an intimidatory over-reaction

    BUT… John Roughan fiddles while Rome burns. And he’s still on the Press Council?

    John Roughan: Press can be too precious about its rights

    Which leads me to believe the editorial was a Tim Murphy piece.

    And I've come to realise that all those who keep insisting Hager is a recipient of stolen property, are the same people who seem to think that it's not illegal when Tricky Dick is doing it.

    The southernmost capital … • Since Nov 2006 • 5441 posts Report Reply

  • Kumara Republic,

    The southernmost capital … • Since Nov 2006 • 5441 posts Report Reply

  • nzlemming, in reply to Kumara Republic,

    Wake up or cover up?

    Waikanae • Since Nov 2006 • 2935 posts Report Reply

  • nzlemming,

    The irony of O'Sullivan citing Odgers to declare her innocence seems to have escaped her.

    Waikanae • Since Nov 2006 • 2935 posts Report Reply

  • nzlemming,

    As my wife said, it's a bit like Roderigo calling Iago as a character witness.

    Waikanae • Since Nov 2006 • 2935 posts Report Reply

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