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Banks case to Police lawyers

Written By: - Date published: 10:07 pm, July 5th, 2012 - 36 comments
Categories: accountability, act, election funding, john banks, law - Tags:

The Police have concluded their investigation into John Banks’ declaration that he did not know that Kim Dotcom and Sky City had made significant donations to his 2010 mayoral campaign, so recorded them as anonymous. If he can be shown beyond reasonable doubt to have known about either, he is guilty of filing a false  return and the penalties are severe. The Police investigators  have passed the file to their legal section to decide whether or not to prosecute.

Everybody now knows that Kim Dotcom and Sky City did make the donations to Banks’ candidacy campaign. Banks defence is that he did not know at the time that any specific donation came from them, and that he complied with the letter of the law, which defines an anonymous donation as one “where the donation is made in such a way that the candidate did not know the person who made the donation.”

There are two tests the Police legal team will have to apply. They are outlined in the prosecution guidelines;

Prosecutions ought to be initiated or continued only where the prosecutor is satisfied that the Test for Prosecution is met. The Test for Prosecution is met if the evidence which can be adduced in Court is sufficient to provide a reasonable prospect of conviction – the Evidential Test; and Prosecution is required in the public interest – the Public Interest Test.

Each aspect of the test must be separately considered and satisfied before a decision to prosecute can be taken. The Evidential Test must be satisfied before the Public Interest Test is considered. The prosecutor must analyse and evaluate all of the evidence and information in a thorough and critical manner.

As the guidelines indicate, the evidential test is the critical one. There is no question that if the evidence is sufficient, prosecution in this case is in the public interest.

What we know from what has been disclosed publicly is that according to Kim Dotcom he offered Banks a donation of $50,000 which Banks accepted gratefully but asked that it be split into two donations of $25,000 each. A Dotcom employee who lodged the cheques in Queenstown said that he knew they had been received because he had a call from Dotcom’s bodyguard, Wayne Tempero,  to say that Banks had called Tempero to say thank you for the donations.

Banks says he cannot remember saying this. It comes down to a question of credibility – is John Banks to be believed, or are Kim Dotcom and Wayne Tempero telling the truth. Both can’t be right. The prosecution guidelines say that when there is an issue of credibility, prosecutors must look closely at the evidence when deciding whether there is a reasonable prospect of conviction.

But there is no doubt that the donations were made, and in the form Banks asked for. Banks’ story kept changing, and there is certainly other circumstantial evidence that Banks knew Dotcom was a donor – he later asked him for a donation to ACT’s 2011 election campaign  but was turned down. There is also the question of the Sky City donation – it arrived with Len Brown’s campaign team by named cheque.

There would appear to be plenty of evidence available. In my opinion the issue of credibility should be decided by a judge.

36 comments on “Banks case to Police lawyers”

  1. Jackal 1

    Usually a file is not passed to the legal section without good reason and I wouldn’t be surprised at a speedy resignation. Pity (if forthcoming) it wasn’t prior to the asset sales legislation passing its final reading.

  2. xtasy 2


    so is he a hero of the working class or average kiwi at all, I doubt it. Wake up dumbos!

    [lprent: shouting? Let’s reduce the volume to ummm 40%… ]

  3. xtasy 3

    If the above link may fail, have a look at the following, how this man loves indulgence and selfishness, base on pure capitalist ideas:

  4. xtasy 4

    I am sorry, but many people fall easily again and again for superficial perception. Censorship is immediately applied when a person raises something critical, even if it is TRUE.

    So I suggest, examine the background, evidence and so forth, and THEN decide about whether to make comments on a post. Thank you lprent.

    [lprent: I’m unconcerned about what you wrote. I am concerned that you shouted in capitals in excess of what we tolerate. It is an antisocial trait that we discourage. Convince with what you say rather than trying to attact attention with a dumbarse advertising trick from the 1930’s.

    You appear to have missed the point of my warning. Should I emphasize it further to make sure it penetrates the skull? ]

  5. xtasy 5

    Very simple conclusion:

    John Banks (especially as former mayor) is happy to kiss bums and associate with any perceived big shots and numbers, some of whom may be willing to donate and work with him.

    Also, a Kim Dotcom is a kind of migrant favoured by the wealthy migrant or “business” or “entrepreneur” category, given allowances galore, same as some refugees also get at times for family reuinion.

    So the conclusion is: NZ remains to be a largely compromising and even corrupt society, although the government and false statistics are supposed to tell us and others the opposite.

    This country is a rotten system and place, and the sooner the corrupt elite get dealt to the better.

  6. Jenny 6

    Will the police act against Banks on this evidence?

    Or will they use their discretion?

    Since the international war on terror our police force has become increasingly conservatively partisan and politicised. So much so that they don’t act purely on the facts of a case.

    It is very clear that they won’t act.

    The Terror Raids and detention of Tuhoe and other activists and the armed raids on Dotcom prove that the police don’t consider just the evidence available to them, but weigh up political considerations as well.

    On the say so of the Americans and without any evidence produced to them at all by the FBI, the police stormed Mr Dotcom’s house in an armed raid, illegally confiscated all his property, used their discretionary powers to oppose bail citing a flight risk. Following the publiclyn expressed wishes of the Americans, the police also continued to vigorously oppose bail and defend the confiscations when their decisions ha to come before the courts.

    Just as well we still have a court system to check the police. If not, chillingly Dotcom would have been delivered up to their foreign power de jour by our politicised police.

    Similiarly to a political script made in the US, our police force mounted major armed raids making dozens of arrests and terrorising a whole Maori community,when they could have just arrested their four suspects with out hardly any effort. In the following court case, politically motivated, the police tried to use illegally gathered evidence and anonymous police spies and undercover agents to make a case for a huge terrorist conspiracy. And failed miserably.

    Our police are conservatively politicised and will not act against a conservative bastion of the status quo. However be a Maori activist, or a trade union picketer, or a Occupy Aotearoa activist, or anti racist protester and expect the full use of police discretionary powers to arrest or detain. Often followed by mischievious and frivolous police prosecutions that most likely will fail but still cost you time and money.

  7. Lanthanide 7

    “As the guidelines indicate, the evidential test is the critical one. There is no question that if the evidence is sufficient, prosecution in this case is in the public interest.”

    Erm, why are you so certain that prosecution is in the public interest? If Banks is prosecuted and found guilty of an offense with 2 years jail term, he’d be out of parliament. That in turn would lead to dead-lock in the house and a by-election in Epsom, which could potentially bring down the government (well, it shouldn’t, since the MP will vote on anything except for asset sales).

    So, actually, I think the police will conveniently find that it is not in the public interest, regardless of the evidence.

    • Pascal's bookie 7.1

      I dunno.

      Wouldn’t that be saying that the slim majority gives govt mps license to commit crimes?

      We’ll know in a few weeks, and they probably won’t detail their reasoning, but another thing to consider is that having confidence in the police is also a matter of public interest. There’s been plenty of talk about how these things never get chraged, so they might decide that it’s time to show some backbone.

    • Uturn 7.2

      Yep, it’s possible. It could also be argued that ever since the Winston “impeachment” Show, there isn’t anything in politics that isn’t in the public interest. Just going by similar cases where MPs have been pushed while they jumped, it is very quiet. Normally these things are preceeded by the sound of an approaching media stampede.

    • jaymam 7.3

      If Banks simply resigns, can’t another person on the ACT list take over?


      • lprent 7.3.1

        Nope. He won an electorate seat – not a list seat. It goes to a by-election and the effect on the list is ignored.

  8. Treetop 8

    I actually think that there is going to be a stoush between Key and Marshall and that Banks is going to be the catalyst. I also think that Banks was tipped off to avoid Dotcom before the 20 January 2012 raid and the source would have been from within the government.

    Good to see Bloody Sunday in Northern Ireland is to be reinvestigated and I expect the truth will finally come out.

    • yeshe 8.1

      Marshall ??

      • Treetop 8.1.1

        Marshall (Commissioner of Police).

        I’ d love to see Key’s face were Banks charged. Marshall knows he cannot afford to be dragged into the political quagmire re Dotcom as he already has been by Crown Law.

        I want to know why the police went ahead with the search warrants assisting the FBI when they knew that they were not specific enough and that NZ law had to be adhered to?

  9. Adrian 9

    I think Key has been tipped off by the cops that Banks is dog tucker and that is why the Asset Sales legislation was hurried through, it is one of the few reasons why National would be prepared to risk the criticism for the haste. The other one is the petition but that is still months away, Banks could be gone by lunchtime.

  10. ad 10

    God I am so looking forward to John Banks going down. Not that a byelection in Epsom would change anything.

    But Banks and Dunne are moving down the Circles of Hell to the point where they will soon meet that late Elamein Koopu for that special layer of purgatory for the undecided category “New Zealand’s worst ever MP within living memory”.

  11. FYI – Cheers!


    Should ‘dodgy’ John Banks even be in Parliament?

    So far he has been politically protected by Prime Minister John Key – whose following of ‘due process’ over the Sky City Convention Centre deal is currently being investigated by the OAG.

    New Zealand ‘perceived’ to be the ‘least corrupt country in the world’ (Transparency International 2011 ‘Corruption Perception Index’).



    “Police investigation into Banks’ mayoral campaign completed
    By Claire Trevett
    7:21 PM Thursday Jul 5, 2012

    A police investigation into John Banks’ 2010 mayoral campaign donations disclosure is completed and a decision on whether the Act leader faces prosecution is expected within weeks.

    Auckland Detective Inspector Mark Benefield told complainants yesterday that the investigation was over and the case had been sent to Police Legal Services to review. He said that process could take two to three weeks.

    Auckland Council’s electoral officer referred Mr Banks to the police to investigate whether he filed a false return after his tilt for the city’s mayoralty in 2010.

    The donations at the centre of the inquiry include $50,000 from Kim Dotcom and $15,000 from Sky City which were not disclosed, or were disclosed as anonymous donations, in his return.

    Mr Banks has consistently maintained his return was correct, based on his knowledge at the time.

    Complaints were laid by Labour MP Trevor Mallard and others, including Auckland based activists Lisa Pragar and Penny Bright.”

    Penny Bright
    ‘Anti-corruption campaigner’


    • mike e 11.1

      Our govt bearaucracy has a very high ranking penny but our business sector has a very poor record as you have pointed out ie huljich SCF petrecivic etc.

  12. Fortran 12

    Even if the police proceed against Banks, when he was seeeking the Auckland Mayoralty, and on the basis of probability he is found guilty, the fine is minimal.
    It will not affect his political role, similarly to Trevor’s punch up.
    Nothing here to get excited over.

    • Te Reo Putake 12.1

      Not so. As I recall, any MP convicted of an offence that has two year’s jail as a possible outcome is turfed out of Parliament. Note that he doesn’t have to be sentenced to 2 years, it’s the conviction for an offence for which 2 years jail could be an outcome that counts.

  13. Jenny 13

    Nothing to see here folks. Move along people.

    In another case of the police exercising their discretion not to bring charges against an establishment figure. The husband of a judge who ran down and killed a pedestrian and then fled the scene, has been told he will not be facing any charges. The police have also told a key witness to the events, the first person who turned up at the scene, that his testimony will not be required.

    The judge was in the car with her husband when he fled the scene of the accident.


    Had the judge and her husband come from a social event?

    Was there alcohol involved?

    Had the driver been drinking?

    Did the judge remonstrate with her husband to stop and give assistance?

    We will never know.



    If the occupants of the car involved in this hit and run, had been Maori, or otherwise not part of the establishment, would there be a hearing?

    Would the police use their discretion not to bring charges?

    Would the runaway driver have to appear in court?

    Would the witness be allowed to speak?

    Would the passenger also be called as a witness?

    Would the passenger face charges of being an accomplice after the fact?

    Would the grieving father be allowed to deliver a victim impact report to the court?

    Unlike the first questions, we can be pretty certain of the answers to the second.

    Waikato Hit-And-Run: Charges Dropped – national | Stuff.co.nz

  14. Treetop 14

    What a weak cop Win van der Velde is, “lacked evidential sufficency to successfully prosecute” him. This is not good enough for a case to be withdrawn when a person was left dead or dying.

    By fleeing an accident it cannot be determined if the man could have been saved and the driver’s lawyer says “couldn’t have stopped the car” the way I read it is that the driver KNEW he had hit something which may have been a person. To not have stopped and to have known the law this is dispicably.

    This is a disturbing case which in some countries would be manslaughter.

    There are so many unanswered questions and you raise them as well?

    What panel damage/DNA was on the driver’s car?
    Were drugs in the driver’s system?
    Did those in the car have a cell phone with them?

  15. Jenny 15

    Just the facts of the matter are not all the police consider when laying charges, your class position in society is also a factor.

    In another scandalous case our conservatively partisan police again expose their political bias in exercising their discretion not to charge someone with family connections.

    Now we know why the prisons are stuffed full of Maori or those without expensive lawyers or not from “good families”.

    Or why wealthy conservative politicians like John Banks will never face charges.


    • Treetop 15.1

      Re 14.1 I would like to know who had the final say as I to would call them weak.

      Re the article of the woman who was detained against her will, what a dangerous precedent this is sending. The person/s who did not charge the offender are also weak.

      Do the crime do the time, regardless of how connected you are.

    • joe90 15.2

      The offender had his chances of a titular title spoiled when he was named in the DomPost dead tree version.

      And people may like to cast their minds back a few years to when a senior member of the same family, a Christchurch motor sporting dynasty, think boats, was convicted for his historical, prolonged and particularly egregious, sexual offending against a female under twelve.

  16. Treetop 16

    Are the police not prosecuting to save money?

    • joe90 16.1

      Privilege Treetop.

      There’s no doubt that if a brown boy, with or without the same familial history, had done the same it would’ve been a car-jacking with a malicious sexual overtone.

      btw, his site is unavailable,

      • Treetop 16.1.1

        I looked up the link I wonder when the site was taken down?

        Re police serve and protect who?

        What a shambles and is not prosecuting (those from a privelleged home) going to be the norm to save money.

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