The Solictor-General has decided not to authorise any charges under the Terrorism Suppression Act for the Urewera 17.
This is a huge blow to Police credibility. It is rare for the Solicitor-General to decline any request made by the Police. Add to it, the use of the Act to justify the nature of the Police raids, and Commissioner Broad is in a very vulnerable position.
This doesn’t mean those charged have not broken the law and done some stupid or bad things. The evidence on that awaits a trial. It also doesn’t mean the Police were wrong to arrest them.
But it does most seriously call into question the need for 300 armed Police doing simultaneous raids around the country.
There will be questions in Parliament next week, no doubt, on whether the Police Commissioner still has the confidence of the Minister.