Brash welcomes review

May 22nd, 2009 at 8:03 am by David Farrar

The Herald reports:

Former National Party leader has welcomed a high-level review of the investigation into how his private emails ended up in a book. …

Commissioner Broad said continued questioning of the police role could undermine public trust and confidence in the force.

He ordered a full review of the case, including the recent release of the highly edited file, to be conducted by Assistant Commissioner Steve Shortland of Auckland, with an independent adviser working alongside him. …

Dr Brash said he was happy with the steps being taken.

“I am very pleased at the police commissioner’s reaction,” he said.

“One of my major concerns was that the way the investigation was initially conducted suggested either incompetence or political bias and I think that’s dangerous for the police and not good for the country.”

Dr Brash said the senior appointment backed by the independent adviser to review the case went a “very long way towards satisfying my concerns”.

He was prepared to stop pressing for a commission – for now. He said the independent observer needed to be politically neutral and independent.

It will be interesting to see who is appointed.

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50 Responses to “Brash welcomes review”

  1. george (388 comments) says:

    The think the key words are these: “He was prepared to stop pressing for a commission – for now.”

    It looks like John Key is on notice – this had better be sorted or Brash will be back in the media.

    In the meantime, Key’s refusal to have a proper inquiry looks suspicious, especially with Phil Goff so relaxed about a proper inquiry going ahead, according to the Dom-Post.

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  2. petal (706 comments) says:

    It smells David. Better to clean it out, wherever this leads. If it does lead to National Party people, the Government will survive it. But let this fester close to the next election and the cancer may take the patient with it. This doesn’t look good. Even died in the wool National supporters are looking for total disclosure.

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  3. Redbaiter (13,197 comments) says:

    “Commissioner Broad said continued questioning of the police role could undermine public trust and confidence in the force.”

    Said by a politically partisan incompetent who has done more towards undermining public trust and confidence in the force than anyone.

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  4. Fletch (6,407 comments) says:

    It will be interesting to see who is appointed.

    If Helen were still in charge it would be one of her buddies, or else someone whose hands were so tied they wouldn’t have the power to actually do anything.

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  5. F E Smith (3,305 comments) says:

    Hmm, let me see now: A policeman is to investigate whether the Police investigated an issue correctly? Well, we know what the answer will be already, so why go ahead with it? We may as well save the money.

    Come on, the IPCA is already there to brown-nose the cops, so why give them more chances? A full, independent commission of inquiry is needed here if you ever want to get anything other than “they could have done it better but they meant well”.

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  6. david (2,557 comments) says:

    Does there exist a police officer who would bowl up to Howard and Lyn and ask them to open their files of comms with the Beehive?

    And what sort of response will Inspector Plod get when he knocks on the door of the SIS and asks if they had any involvement in the case?

    Too little —- too late

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  7. goodgod (1,348 comments) says:

    I’m not impressed by Key’s facetious attitude in this matter. You cannot go from being intelligent realist to acting like an ignorant dreamer and still have people believe you are otherwise genuine. Brash has been viewed as the gentleman of NZ politics and in his public image he lives up to that label. I hope though that he does not back off. Unlike the current National Caucus, I certainly believe that justice and investigations into political corruption are never “too expensive”.

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  8. ross (1,437 comments) says:

    I would suggest to Mr Broad that public trust and confidence in the “force” has never been so low. Mr Broad is partly responsible for that. His own actions leave a lot to be desired, as the following press release shows. I note that he has never publicly apologised for his conduct.

    Wednesday, 5 April 2006, 12:30 pm
    Press Release: Lynley Hood

    On Thurs 1 October 1992, Detective Inspector Howard Broad of Christchurch announced to a packed press conference that four women child care workers had been arrested in the Christchurch Civic Creche case [Press, 2 Oct 92]. He named the women and described the shocking charges they faced jointly with the already-demonised Peter Ellis (who had been arrested 6 months earlier):

    “They [three of the women] are accused of sexually violating a boy by having unlawful sexual connection with him; indecent assault on the same boy, who was then aged three and four; Indecent assault on another boy, then aged three and four; and indecent assault on a girl, then aged three and four.

    “The fourth woman … is charged that jointly with Ellis she wilfully did an indecent act in the toilets at the creche some time between April 1, 1989, and October 31, 1991.”

    The charges against the women were dismissed pre-trial. My research [A City Possessed, 2001] established that the allegations were the product of the ritual abuse hysteria sweeping Christchurch at the time. Police officers in the grip of this hysteria made the grossly unprofessional mistake of treating rumour and innuendo as established fact.

    Howard Broad’s press conference in October 1992 destroyed the careers and previously unblemished reputations of four well-qualified, experienced and dedicated child care workers.

    Since then, calls for a commission of inquiry into the creche case have been rejected by government. Consequently, none of the officials involved have learnt anything from the mistakes made. Indeed, because they have never had to admit to making any mistakes, many of them have repeated he same mistakes, over and over again. With Howard Broad’s appointment as the country’s top police officer, there is a real risk that ongoing damage caused to the fabric of New Zealand society by sex abuse hysteria and false allegations will continue unabated.

    ENDS

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  9. tvb (4,430 comments) says:

    It should be a QC of some standing, maybe a retired High Court Judge. I will be dismayed if it is a Police Officer. We can ignore it if that is what Broad does.

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  10. andrei (2,664 comments) says:

    What?

    No pontification from DPF on this? Just a subdued It will be interesting to see who is appointed.

    Hmmmm – this gets stranger and stranger

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  11. burt (8,275 comments) says:

    Commissioner Broad said continued questioning of the police role could undermine public trust and confidence in the force.

    Ahhh no Mr Broad. Continued questioning of the role of certain officers will undermine public trust in those officers which will be resolved by sacking them. At the end of this public confidence in the police will be increased.

    What is with this dick head – has surely knows that Police work for “the crown” and are separate from “the legislature”….

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  12. dime (9,977 comments) says:

    F E Smith – you dont trust cops investigating cops? you should! the PC cop brigade is brutal. Cops have zero rights when being investigated.

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  13. dimmocrazy (286 comments) says:

    Hahahaha, this whole thing is just too good to be true, literally. In the morning Barsh calls for a formal commission of inquiry, a few hours later Broad anounces that inspector Clouseau will go and have another look, and not an hour later we have Brash on the radio saying that this goes a long way to satisfy his request.
    Boys and girls, we are all being led astray here, and there is some huge collusion going on that goes a lot deeper than the police.

    Once again I call for not a commission of inquiry in the formal sense or a police whitewash, but for a full investigation by clued-on members of the public. Not “truly independent”, but simply hell-bent on getting to the truth, and all of it. I don’t even think extraordinary powers are necessary, all that is required is plenty of sunlight and public attention, together with a clear government direction that the OIA is to be complied with strictly by each and every individual and organization that is to be investigated. Al;l necessary powers and sanctions would arise under current law and regulation, what is needed is the resources to apply and pursue it dilligently. A small enthusiastic group of skeptics and cynics would do, I volunteer.

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  14. F E Smith (3,305 comments) says:

    dime: nor should they. But I have read IPCA files and then seen the accompanying reports and I can tell you that the word ‘whitewash’ should be part of that organisations name. For most of the smaller files, there is pretty much zero chance of an outcome favourable to your client, unless the police think they are going to be sued. Then they stump up pretty quick and try to put a confidentiality clause on it.

    If you don’t have a case that you can sue over then the police know that you can’t take it further so they ‘investigate’, write a report and then sit back while the complainant fumes over being told they are a liar and the upright cops they complained about are the true victims.

    Even when there are flagrant breaches of the law, of the Police Code of Conduct (or whatever it is called) or even actual criminal actions by police, the investigations use terms like ‘good faith’ or ‘error of judgment’ or similar to excuse the behaviour. I know that it is different when you are talking about internal disciplinary procedures (which is why cops subject to those procedures get lawyers along to help them. Funny that.) but those are truly ‘internal’ and are not made public.

    When the report is to be released to the public then there is only one result that is acceptable to the cops and that is one that supports the Police. This will be a whitewash and the inquiry should be by a truly independent commission. That is the only way to see why the Police are so reluctant to release the file and whether they could have investigated the complaint better.

    EDIT: and to support my view can I refer to Redbaiter’s comment at 8.30am. That sums it up beautifully.

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  15. burt (8,275 comments) says:

    Let me see if I really understand how this works. I’ll use a hypothetical because that allows some latitude in my example.

    Let’s assume I break into somebody’s private house and steal some information they have. I give that information to somebody else who uses it to destroy (rightly or wrongly) the career of the person I stole it from. The chap I stole the stuff from ponders what to do for a while then lays a complaint. The police using their extraordinary powers of investigation quickly work out it was me and call me in for an interview.

    I explain to the plod’s that if they charge me I will loose my job and it will cause me stress and difficulty in my life. I also explain that it might cost my company because it would need to appoint a new director. After hearing this the plod’s decide that it’s not in my best interest to prosecute me. They agree we should all move on.

    Do I understand this correctly or have I missed something? Is there a difference between the influence I would have over the police if being prosecuted negatively impacts me compared to the influence an MP has where a prosecution would negatively impact them?

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  16. side show bob (3,660 comments) says:

    Water board that Hager mongrel, he’ll sing like a canary.

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  17. dime (9,977 comments) says:

    FE Smith – yea i only know cops involved in the internal investigations.. they are subject to over the top PC wankers.

    side show bob – i thought the very same thing this morning when i heard Hager on the news hehe arrogant prick that he is

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  18. John Ansell (874 comments) says:

    Hager says a Commission of Inquiry would be pointless as he wouldn’t reveal his sources. Shouldn’t a non-corrupt legal system provide him with an incentive to do so – like a jail term?

    And I nominate the Auditor-General to be the sole investigator. He may be the only one with any spine in the whole of the public service.

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  19. dime (9,977 comments) says:

    Hager the Martyr? no thanks

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  20. Glutaemus Maximus (2,207 comments) says:

    The Political Damage done by a full investigation, will always be mitigated by a cover up by all the Parliamentarians.

    The Diana inquest saw off how many Coroners, 5?

    As soon as they got near to the truth, it all got too heavy.

    Do I believe her death was part of a random accident? Not a chance. The truth was all to difficult for those affected.

    The French were totally involved. We know how naughty they can be, don’t we?

    Brash is seeking to get some headroom and closure. He will get a big green tick, and everyone else will manage the collateral damage potential.

    It’s all about Kings, Knights, and Knaves. Always has been, always will be.

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  21. John Ansell (874 comments) says:

    Hager’s house should have been turned upside down by now as a receiver of stolen goods. Surely that’s what non-corrupt police forces do in these circumstances?

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  22. Banana Llama (1,043 comments) says:

    Well if we are going to use our imaginations here in regards to hager i would prefer a corrupt police force investigating him, they can put his hand on the table and ask him who provided the information.

    No answer?

    Down to nine digits, maybe then his next book will be an audio one.

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  23. freethinker (691 comments) says:

    If Broadarse can reveal the Veitch file in full then he can do the same with the Brash file – John call the Kommissar and tell him you will have no confidence in him if he doesn’t release an uncensored file – NOW!!

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  24. Jeff83 (745 comments) says:

    “Hager says a Commission of Inquiry would be pointless as he wouldn’t reveal his sources. Shouldn’t a non-corrupt legal system provide him with an incentive to do so – like a jail term?”

    Can one point me in the right direction, I thought it was Brash who was the one who in effect was accused, and proved through his own writings to be corrupt. Or does it only apply to journalists who point it out?

    I am curious.

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  25. Jeff83 (745 comments) says:

    “Hager’s house should have been turned upside down by now as a receiver of stolen goods. Surely that’s what non-corrupt police forces do in these circumstances?”

    Yes that is generally what I want to happen to journalists who report on the politicians who proport to run this country. Have them accused of burglary. Definitely the recipee for a healthy democracy.

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  26. John Ansell (874 comments) says:

    Let’s suppose, for the sake of your argument, that Don Brash was a bad, bad man (which, to those of us who know him, is absurd). Anyway, he got punished, didn’t he? He lost the election and his job.

    Yet the woman whose presided over the theft of taxpayers’ money that cost him that election (aided and abetted by the police) got promoted.

    And the man who received, and profited from, his stolen property, has been laughing all the way to the bank (aided and abetted by the police).

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  27. burt (8,275 comments) says:

    John Ansell

    That will teach him for attempting to get in the way of her plans.

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  28. backster (2,174 comments) says:

    Don BRASH should be invited to appoint the independent adviser. Surely it may save time and money if BRASH is permitted to read the full unpurgated version of the file before any enquiry is launched.

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  29. John Ansell (874 comments) says:

    This is not about restoring Don Brash to his throne. Who owned the stolen property is irrelevant here. This is about finding and punishing the person or persons who stole it, and possibly about uncovering a cover-up.

    Some will say “We’re tired of Brash and his emails. We’ve got bigger things to worry about.”

    We might also say we’re tired of seeing the tragedy of the Bain family played out on our screens night after night. Justice can be tiring, but it comes with the territory we call a free country.

    And come to think of it, how many bigger things are there to worry about in a democracy than corruption in one’s police force and political parties?

    So quickly did all parties seem to tire of this theft – truly New Zealand’s Watergate – that the word conspiracy hovers uneasily in the air, and will remain there until the police bosses have been proven competent in this matter, or sacked.

    All we want to know is the truth. Is that so much to ask, Mr Plod?

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  30. AG (1,827 comments) says:

    John Ansell,

    “Hager’s house should have been turned upside down by now as a receiver of stolen goods. Surely that’s what non-corrupt police forces do in these circumstances?”

    You mean like this sterling example of “what non-corrupt police forces do in these circumstances”?
    http://www.upi.com/Top_News/2008/12/04/House-of-Commons-enraged-by-police-raid/UPI-85831228408041/

    Leading me to wonder why the offices of Farmers’ Weekly haven’t been raided because of this story:
    http://www.nzfarmersweekly.co.nz/article/3387.html

    Or why John Key sleeps soundly in his bed, given his possession of unlawfully obtained material:
    http://www.johnkey.co.nz/index.php?/archives/246-Key-Notes-No.-19.html

    Or whether John Ansell just blows a lot of hot air?

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  31. david (2,557 comments) says:

    AG stop straying off-song. Just keep repeating Black is White – someone might one day take you seriously but at least you will be following the line.

    Frankly your attempts at rational discourse by drawing irrelevant comparisons not only defy credibility, they stretch it beyond breaking point.

    To suggest in your wildest dreams that discovery of instructions issued to a Government Department by a Minister’s office could remotely be compared to the wholesale theft of hundreds of pieces of personal correspondence between private persons is disingenuous and suggests that you are spinning for money.

    How about declaring your position in the scheme of things.

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  32. AG (1,827 comments) says:

    No, david.

    I’m afraid you are spinning by painting this as an issue of “the wholesale theft of hundreds of pieces of personal correspondence between private persons ” … that’s a conclusion, not a premise. Which then requires evidence that this was “theft”, as opposed to someone with a legal right of access to the correspondence giving it over to a journalist. And as MY position is that there is no reason to believe it was the former over the latter, nor the latter over the former, I withold judgment. That’s what happens when you don’t just wish facts into being.

    The purpose of my post was simply to point out how silly John Ansell’s original post was. If every allegation that information has been “stolen” were to result in the police “turning houses upside down”, then when would the police ever find time to bring down the crime rate (a la National’s election promises)?

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  33. Jack5 (5,137 comments) says:

    David: no use trying to argue rationally with AG. No use offering reason against his broken record technique: he parrots off part of a statute on copyright repeatedly as though this were all there was to intellectual property law. (See yesterday’s thread.)

    Every allegation of theft to AG is a “conclusion, not a premise”. If he was conscious of his technique he’d score A plus in Sophistry 101.

    The more these leftists squeal and butt their heads against the gates of reason, David, the more they must fear official discovery of Hager the Horrid’s sources.

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  34. bharmer (687 comments) says:

    If the finding of this inquiry is that someone broke in and stole the emails I will acknowledge humbly that I WAS WRONG. Are you prepared to make a similar undertaking if it is proved not to be the case, J5 or david, or will you continue to propagate conspiracy theories as if they were immutable fact?

    I have no idea which way this will go, but nor, I suggest, do you.

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  35. AG (1,827 comments) says:

    Jack5,
    “[AG} parrots off part of a statute on copyright repeatedly as though this were all there was to intellectual property law.”

    (1) I cited it once, in response to your request to have information regarding the law on copyright and criminal law. Sorry for, you know, providing what you asked for. Silly of me, really.

    (2) If you have more information regarding intellectual property law, lets have it. Otherwise I’m calling you a fraud who is simply pontificating to cover over ignorance, Your move.

    (3) If you simply are “alleging theft”, LETS HAVE YOUR EVIDENCE. Is that too, too much to ask for?

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  36. Jack5 (5,137 comments) says:

    AG at 6.01 labels me a fraud because I have no Ph.D. in intellectual property law. Nor even if I did have such a Ph. D., would I have the ability to condense such knowledge into a one sentence summary that AG could understand and use to balance his small snatch from the statute book. At least I understand the scope of intellectual property law, which AG doesn’t seem to.

    AG, you can be as objectionably ad hominem as you wish, and rant on repeatedly about “proof of theft” (whatever you mean by that). You will not make one iota of difference to the drive for justice for Don Brash over this matter.

    Hager the Horrid of course denies any Brash emails he received were passed on to him in breach of copyright or worse. He would, as he’s pledged not to reveal his sources (if there any). You, AG, merely parrot and reparrot Hager’s position to the point of trolling.

    Hager’s sources, if any, will get what’s coming to them. You’ll make no difference to this.

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  37. AG (1,827 comments) says:

    I don’t demand a PhD, Jack5. Anything more than a lame and frankly empty claim that “there’s lots of law on intellectual property, so Hager MUST have committed a criminal offence” would do. So let ME spell matters out in one sentence for you.

    Unless the emails were stolen from Don Brash under Part 10 of the Crimes Act 1961, there is not any criminal offence at issue because s.131 of the Copyright Act 1994 has not been breached.

    End of debate.

    Now, when you (or the police) come up with evidence that there actually has been a breach of a specific section in Part 10 of the Crimes Act 1961, get back to me. And yes, the onus is on you (as Don Brash’s champion in this “drive for justice”) to provide actual, concrete evidence a crime has occured. That’s the way the criminal justice system works.

    Until then, what can be said at all can be said clearly, and what we cannot talk about we must pass over in silence.

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  38. reid (16,491 comments) says:

    Yes, the interesting thing little touched on in this thread is the current govt’s reticence in correcting this manner in a transparent, seen-to-be-done indisputably thorough above-board manner.

    Does the appointment of an independent individual who oversees the investigation cover this?

    Really comes down to Brash doesn’t it. If he’s satisfied, then are we?

    Personally, I’m not. This is a blatant matter that prima facie abuses our core democratic freedoms of which we have previously been proud: no police corruption. If the police can be “got-at” by politicians for pure political purposes that to me is far far far more structurally serious than fitting someone up which is the next most-serious event on the scale.

    To me it really does merit a Commission of Enquiry and IMO the reason Key isn’t giving it is because he’s new and has been advised that retaining public confidence in the Police is far more important than the potential findings of this incident, which would be only damaging.

    If that’s the case, Mr Key, then permit me to disagree. Sometimes you need to stand for something. This is one of those times.

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  39. Jack5 (5,137 comments) says:

    AG, trolling from the left at 8.24, pompously declares an end of debate unless there is concrete evidence of crime. Or perhaps unless Hager the Horrid or his chorus of trolls provide concrete, verifiable proof the emails etc were not stolen or misappropriated or hacked.

    There are at least two questions. One — how confidential emails got into Hager the Horrid’s hands (that is if the emails all existed), and second whether the police honestly tried to track down how they did, and who stole and passed on any such emails or hacked into a computer system to get them.

    AG, unless you are an omniscient troll who sees and knows all, or unless you are a shadow of Hager the Horrid, you cannot know for sure their path to him (if there was one). If you are really an omniscient troll, please share the information.

    Also, I reject your assertion of authority to say what “we” must pass over in silence.

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  40. jarbury (464 comments) says:

    So what happens if English and/or Key did have a big role in this as they wanted to topple Brash?

    Whaleoil is highly suspicious about Bill English in particular.

    Do you guys really want THAT to come out?

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  41. toad (3,674 comments) says:

    Now, here’s something worth speculating on:

    Who was the National Party campaign manager in 2005 and would have had access to everything?

    Who received the almost unprecedented elevation to a senior post in John Key’s Cabinet from not having even been in Parliament before the 2008 election?

    A reward for a job well done, perhaps? (And I don’t mean the 2005 campaign).

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  42. jarbury (464 comments) says:

    Not Mr Eight-four percent?

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  43. goodgod (1,348 comments) says:

    Why do you criminally insane lefties think that anyone who voted against you is equally criminal and cares that a personality would fall? No no, you just don’t get it, do you? If there is corruption, it must to cut out of the party. The party is not god. We’re in this for all the people of NZ, real democracy, not just the people of the party. Silly communists, you just can’t see it. If English broke the law he must go, if Key broke the law he must go. Scarey thought for Clarkist supporters, huh?

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  44. toad (3,674 comments) says:

    And the chocolate fish goes to jarbury.

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  45. AG (1,827 comments) says:

    Jack5,

    You either do not understand the relevant definition of “a troll”, or are deliberately misusing it. See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Internet_troll

    All I am doing is pointing out what should be obvious to anyone who is not engaged in simple wish-fulfillment. NO EVIDENCE OF A CRIME HAS BEEN UNCOVERED HERE. Don Brash SAYING there was a crime provided a reason to investigate the matter. The police response to that reason to investigate may or may not have been sufficient (which is what this inquiry will determine … let’s wait and see what it says). But the result of that investigation is that NO EVIDENCE OF A CRIME HAS BEEN UNCOVERED.

    So when you say “unless you are an omniscient troll who sees and knows all, or unless you are a shadow of Hager the Horrid, you cannot know for sure their path to him (if there was one)”, I say yes, and so what? I do not have to demonstrate that no crime took place. There must instead be evidence that a crime took place. And so far there ISN’T ANY EVIDENCE THAT A CRIME HAS BEEN COMMITTED.

    Can you understand that simple point, and its relevance? For example, if I were to go to the police and say “Jack5 stole $100,000 from me”, is it for you to prove you didn’t steal actually steal that amount of money from me? You get it now? Good.

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  46. Sonny Blount (1,783 comments) says:

    AG,

    Then why did the police need to heavily edit their oia release about the case? IF they had released the whole file the issue would go away.

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  47. Jack5 (5,137 comments) says:

    Re troll AG’s 8.26am post.

    Yep, AG you fit the definition of troll nicely. Problem is your head is so swollen you can’t recognise yourself in the mirror.

    As for your comment about the $100,000.

    If I’m boasting that I have seen the money and made use of it, I think, old troll, it would be up to me to prove I hadn’t stolen and explain who did steal it.

    How did you become so Left wing, old troll. Were you indoctrinated as a child.

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  48. AG (1,827 comments) says:

    Sonny,
    “Then why did the police need to heavily edit their oia release about the case? IF they had released the whole file the issue would go away.”

    No idea. Honestly. And you may be right about releasing the file. But that’s an issue relating to the police investigation, not the question of evidence of a crime. So let’s wait and see whether the police investigation was fully satisfactory. But note, the decision to redact parts of the file doesn’t change the basic conclusion … the police couldn’t find any evidence of a criminal offence. And until there is evidence of such, then there is nothing for them to do.

    Jack5.
    “If I’m boasting that I have seen the money and made use of it, I think, old troll, it would be up to me to prove I hadn’t stolen and explain who did steal it.”

    Once again, you are assuming the ONLY possible explanation for Hager having the emails is that there has been a theft (i.e. a criminal action). This is not the case. He has provided an alternative explanation (“I was leaked them by someone with lawful access to them”). The police must them look for evidence that this explanation is not true (ie that he did come into possession of them in breach of the law). There is no evidence of this. Hence, no evidence of a crime. Hence, no further reason for action.

    Now, having tried on multiple occasions to explain this to you without success, I conclude you have trouble understanding basic principles of our criminal law. So I’m going to stop now, because arguing with an idiot just makes me look like one.

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  49. Jack5 (5,137 comments) says:

    AG at 11.14am: “…so, I’m going to stop now.”

    Bye troll.

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  50. ross (1,437 comments) says:

    > He has provided an alternative explanation (”I was leaked them by someone with lawful access to them”).

    Right, and you naturally believe Hager. Indeed, if Hager was given stolen material, do you really expect he would go to the police and turn in the thief?

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