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It’s not stolen – I just borrowed it without asking

Written By: - Date published: 3:23 pm, February 23rd, 2014 - 51 comments
Categories: blogs, crime, law, police - Tags: ,

Much discussion has taken place around the legalities of bloggers accessing data and then publishing it on the web. We’ve heard plenty about the complexity of this issue from the bloggers’ perspective. But little about the complexities facing bloggers’ targets or police investigators.

For this post I will use the Blomfield v Slater example as a case study.

A compliant was made to the police about the illegality of Mr Slater possessing and publishing copies of Mr Blomfield’s property. They declined to lay charges because of no clearly defined reasons in the law. I think that they were mistaken in their understanding of the Crimes Act.

I have had access to the court documents that Mr Blomfield has filed in his defamation proceedings against Mr Slater. I am a supporter of Mr Blomfield’s. I have assisted him with his case and the issues relating to Mr Slater. But this is my opinion of the law as I see it, backed up by some very intensive research.

Judge Blackie asked a very pointed question of Counsel for Slater last year during the defamation case: “So did Mr Slater steal the hard drive?” Mr Williams (lawyer acting for Slater) responded: “No he did not.” Judge Blackie rephrased the question: “So you’re telling me that Mr Blomfield gave it to you or said you can have it? I will ask you again, did Mr Slater steal the hard drive?”. Mr Williams did not respond.

After reading this exchange, I asked Blomfield: “How did Slater get the hard drive?” His response: “I don’t really know. One of Mr Slater’s sources, Mr Warren Powell, had it then it ended up with Slater”. I have read Mr Blomfield’s initial witness statement to the NZ Police and this is what he told them then. As always, Slater has different and varied twists in his explanations. None appear to have any legal validity.

Background

Mr Blomfield is upset and concerned about Slater’s possession and use of material relating to Blomfield, and this is at the kernel of the case.

The material comprises all Blomfield’s physical files that were stored in two filing cabinets in an office he shared with Warren Powell of Hell Pizza. It relates to his private businesses, including confidential client, financials, and commercial data, as well as computer equipment containing electronic material such as his emails, personal files and data, including numerous photographs and videos.

The material essentially comprises almost every record (hard copy or electronic, business or personal) of Mr Blomfield’s life for the previous 10 years or so. In this digital age it is not unusual for the content of people’s computer hard-drives and data storage facilities to contain their most personal and private details.

It is difficult not to feel considerable sympathy for someone in a situation where another person(s) sees fit to gain access to and copy such material without any permission or authority from the owner of the material to do so. Equally, it would be surprising if such action did not constitute a criminal offence.

Mr Slater’s actions

There does not appear to be any dispute that Cameron Slater has made for himself an electronic copy of all of the material belonging to Matthew Blomfield.

Slater’s blog-site posts headed “Blomfield files: free to a good home” (dated 14/5/12 but now removed) stated, inter alia, “I have now copied all of the Blomfield files onto a portable drive. It is just over 1Tb of juicy dirt.” Other material posted or referred to by Slater on his blog-site can only have originated from Blomfield’s personal material (both hard-copy and electronic).

In the submission for Mr Blomfield a strong argument has been made that, in copying Mr Blomfield’s private and personal data (i.e. physical and electronic data which comprises tangible and intangible “property” as defined in section 2 of the Crimes Act 1961), Slater has committed at least three Crimes Act offences:

Property provided to Slater copied was “stolen”

To prove that Slater committed the offence of receiving under s246 of the Crimes Act, it is first necessary to prove that the property he received was stolen or obtained by other criminal means, and that Slater knew, or was reckless, about the manner in which it came into his possession.

The evidence I have reviewed does not positively establish the identity of the person who took Blomfield’s property and made it available to Slater to copy, or the circumstances in which he took possession thereof (although the evidence obtained by Mr Blomfield gives a strong indication of this person’s identity). Accordingly unlawful “taking” cannot be established.

Having possession or control over the physical property and in some way making the property available to Slater to copy would seem to satisfy the ordinary usage of the broad terms “using or dealing” in s219(1)(b) of the Crimes Act. The decision in Davies (Daniel) v Police [2008] 1 NZLR 638 confirms that there can be a “use or dealing” with intangible property (see also Adams on Criminal Law at CA2.29.01).

However, dishonesty must also be proved, on the part of the provider and the receiver of material obtained without its owners’ consent. It would be difficult for the person who made the material available to Slater to argue any belief that its owner Blomfield consented to it being uplifted and provided to Slater.

Intent to deprive the owner permanently of the property or any interest in the property must also be established (see Adams at CA219.05). That the person made the property available to Slater to copy, together with the fact that the person never returned or made any effort to return the physical property to Blomfield would prima facie be sufficient evidence to satisfy the “intent to permanently deprive” requirement.

There is also a strong argument in terms of s219 (2) (a) that there was an intent to deal with the property in such a manner that it could not be returned in the same condition (i.e. uncopied); and that in terms of s219 (2) (b) there was an intention that the owner be deprived of a property interest in the property (i.e. the right to exclusive possession of the electronic material contained therein).

Property provided to Slater was unlawfully received

To prove that Slater unlawfully received the property (or part thereof) as well as proving that the property had been stolen, it would also need to be proved that, at the time of receiving, Mr Slater had knowledge thereof or was reckless as to the manner it was obtained and provided to him. .

Given the nature of the material, and the fact that it was not provided to him by Blomfield (or anyone authorised by him), it would be difficult to argue that Slater was not at the very least reckless as to whether the material was stolen when he received and copied it.

Slater may argue that he never “received” the property. Receiving requires possession and control over the property. On the evidence it is difficult not to conclude that Slater did not come into physical possession of the property, at least temporarily, for the purposes of copying it. On his own website, Slater indicates that he has copied both electronic and hard copy material owned by Blomfield. It would require at least temporary physical possession of the original hard copy material to make copies.

In terms of electronic files, Slater has made the admission: “I have now copied all of the Blomfield files onto a portable drive.” Even if this was done from a supplied electronic copy of the original Blomfield files, a strong argument can be made that Slater’s “copying” of a copy can properly be found to be an act of dishonesty. This argument is set out in detail below in addressing whether a charge of theft can be proved against Mr Slater.

Does Slater’s act in copying material obtained dishonestly constitute theft?

The offence of theft as amended in 2003 now also includes unlawfully dealing with property that was previously considered to be conversion. The actus reus element in s219(1)(b) of “using or dealing” with the property is broad enough in its plain language to cover copying, and as already set out case law confirms that there can be a “use or dealing” with intangible property. Adams notes (at CA2.29.01) that criminal dealings with intangible property can now be the subject of charges of theft, obtaining by deception and the like.”

The first mens rea element for theft is dishonesty, which is focused on the absence of belief in consent to carry out the use or dealing with the property from a person entitled to give such consent. The only person entitled to give such consent here is Blomfield and, accordingly, there is no basis for Mr Slater to argue any such belief in consent.

The second mens rea element is that the actions are done without claim of right or belief that the acts were lawful. While Slater may seek to adduce evidence of a claim of right there is no obvious claim of right on the face of the facts here for copying the personal and private material belonging to Blomfield, or for viewing it, or for posting blogs about it.

The third mens rea element is intent to deprive the owner permanently of the property, or any interest in the property. While it may be submitted that that there was no intention to permanently deprive because the original was not taken or deleted but merely copied, there is a strong argument that copying the property does (and should) amount to depriving the owner permanently of an “interest in the property”. This interest is the owner’s right to have exclusive possession and control of the property and data that has been provided to a third party without the owner’s consent. The argument would be along the following lines:

A major protection of property interests is the criminal offence of theft and its derivative offences. This protection has a long history of responding to new forms of property mirroring change in societal relations and technological developments.

The 2003 changes to New Zealand’s “Crimes against Rights of Property” in the Crimes Act were a direct response to uncertainties in the application of property offences, in light of rapidly developing computer and networked technologies.

The focus of theft law has been moving from the protection of possession towards the protection of the right of property. The property right is not a single right but a bundle of rights drawn from private law and economic practicalities, which can accommodate differing conceptions of ownership and intangible property. (see Wayne Rumbles, “Theft in the digital: can you steal virtual property?”).

One right comprising part of the bundle of rights in relation to material held on electronic media, is the right to exclusive possession and use of the material. If another person is able to copy the material for themselves they gain the same property interest as the true owner, whose property rights are thereby permanently reduced.

Today, there is no practical distinction between an electronic “original” and an electronic “copy”. Ordinary persons would consider the actions of a person who copies the private electronic data of another for themselves without permission to be “Data theft”. The term commonly used to encompass such behaviour.

I would suggest that taking a copy of private electronic data amounts to depriving the owner permanently of an “interest in the property” for a dishonest purposes is theft under the Crimes Act.

Has Slater accessed a computer system for dishonest purposes?

Section 249 of the Crimes Act makes it an offence to directly or indirectly access a computer system to dishonestly obtain any property, privilege, service, pecuniary advantage, benefit or valuable consideration, or cause loss to any other person. (italics added)

Section 248 defines “computer system” as including, inter alia, a computer, 2 or more interconnected computers, and includes all related input, output, processing, storage, software, or communication facilities and stored data.

To “access” includes to receive data from, or otherwise make use of, any of the resources of the computer system. This broad definition of “access” would appear to cover copying material on a computer system; and the words “directly or indirectly” would make any defence that Mr Slater may have never been in physical possession of the property, untenable.

The physical items on which the electronic data was stored here (computer, hard drive, etc.) are part of Blomfield’s computer system: his historic electronic data is stored on them; and the broad definition of “computer system” in the act includes “stored data”.

Section 249 requires obtaining (or attempting to obtain) property, privilege, service, pecuniary advantage, benefit, or valuable consideration; or causing loss to any person. While it might again be argued that no “property” has been obtained – merely copies made – the wide definition of “property” in section 2 of the Crimes Act would appear to cover copies.

Accessing a computer system without authorisation by Mr Slater

Section 252 of the Crimes Act makes it an offence to intentionally directly or indirectly access a computer system knowing that there was no authorisation to do so or being reckless as to the same.

For the reasons above, there is a strong argument that Slater has directly or indirectly accessed Blomfield’s computer system. Unlike s249, with s252 dishonesty does not need to be proved. It just requires proof of intentional accessing and proof that the person knew they were not authorised to access the system (or were reckless). There appears to be no basis for Slater to argue that he was authorised to access the computer system where clearly no authorisation was given by Blomfield. At the very least that his actions were reckless.

Summing up.

The New Zealand Police have been asked to review the decision not to issue criminal proceedings in relation to the taking / copying and using of Blomfield’s personal and private data.

I personally think that what Mr Slater has done is unconscionable and the thought of an individual having access to every aspect of someone’s entire adult life is appalling. In this fast changing world the NZ Police – and the law itself – are understandably struggling with the complexity of the new electronic age.

The Slater v Blomfield battle continues but its progress to date indicates that – at the end of the day – some landmark decisions may be made on the complex nature of intangible property, of theft, of receiving, and of dishonest use of data obtained without its owner’s consent that will establish new rules of engagement in the era of digital media.

We can but hope. Because what Mr Slater has done here is morally, ethically and, I contend here, legally wrong.

Guy Fox

lprent: This post is subject continuing legal processes. So it will be fully moderated.

51 comments on “It’s not stolen – I just borrowed it without asking”

  1. RedLogix 1

    And the Prime Minister has “weekly chats” with this man.

    And is happily photographed with him.

    And our media glorify him.

    Sick.

    (I don’t give a rat’s patui about Slater – it’s that a large swath of our political and media establishment are protecting him because his toxic, malign bullying makes him a useful proxy.)

    • Colonial Viper 1.1

      The MSM sets the acceptable boundaries and slant on the entire political discourse for the country. Unless the Left is able to bypass the MSM and break out of the right leaning media strait jacket that it has been set up in, it will continue to struggle to present any real alternative vision for the future.

  2. Tracey 2

    kevin spacey could play key in a movie but who plays slater.

    thanks for this post, will be interesting to see how this unfolds.

    • felix 2.1

      Paul Giamatti or Luis Guzman.

      Either of them would have to put on a LOT of weight of course.

    • rhinocrates 2.2

      Terry Jones – have you seen Mr Creosote in Monty Python’s The Meaning of Life?

      (I don’t mean because he’s fat, but because of everything else – the greed, the offensiveness, the vomiting, the explosion.)

    • Sosoo 2.3

      Nah. You’d need CGI to replicate Cam.

  3. irascible 3

    And Judith Collins has to phone him to find out if it permissible for her to give an interview to The Herald about said Slater???
    One does have to question the judgement and ype of political bed fellows the National-Act govt keep company with.

  4. tricledrown 4

    If Camoron Slater is found guilty
    Of being in posession of stolen goods and accessing someones personal files it could mean Gaol for the twice convicted criminal.

  5. Barnsley Bill 5

    No mention or denial of the revelations published about Blomfields methods or activities arising from disclosure of the information. Why is that?

    • lprent 5.1

      Why is that?

      Assuming that they aren’t just arising from Cameron Slaters characteristic style of lying, bombastic over stretching of any facts, or simply because he is usually too stupid to understand what he is looking at (all are far more likely than him being accurate). Then it still doesn’t excuse the offenses of theft, receiving, and illegally accessing data.

      Do you have a point or is this you snorting on your keyboard again? You appear to be valiantly trying to excuse a simple theft for gain.

    • Judge Holden 5.2

      I bet a trawl through your private files would reveal some pretty juicy revelations about your past too eh, Barnsley? Would it be fair game if they were nicked and given to a psychopathic wanker do you think?

  6. tamati 6

    Warren Powell is a cunt. When I was an employee at a Hell Pizza franchise he used to send racist emails to the franchise owner complaining there weren’t enough white staff. (We had mostly Asian staff)

    Any staff member could see these emails as they were available on our front counter computer. I know that some of the employees were extremely upset when they read them.

    I wish I had forwarded the emails so I could have leaked them to the media.

  7. Barnsley Bill 7

    As you well know I have spent some time in close proximity to one of the protagonists in this case and it is my opinion based on observation as this has unfolded that the other protagonist is no saint. Not a fellow traveler of yours or any who write here.
    while I usually disagree vehemently with almost everything posted on this site I am not normally left confused as to why you would publish something in defense of somebody who would normally viewed as a class enemy by you and yours. And indeed would probably be your poster boy for all that is wrong with a free market, light handed regulation economy.

    • lprent 7.1

      …the other protagonist is no saint. Not a fellow traveler of yours or any who write here.

      So? Going back to my original question – how does this excuse Cameron indulging in criminal activities? Then trying to throw the mantle of being a “journalist” over it. Or for that matter trying to hide his crimes as a blogger?

      And indeed would probably be your poster boy for all that is wrong with a free market, light handed regulation economy.

      Again – what does that have to do with blubberboy indulging in criminal activities? I guess that you’re just too terrified of looking at the idea of a legally ordered society?

      In case you hadn’t noticed this site has always behind the rule of real law rather than the mythology of lynch law that you appear to profess. We write large posts or reprint them from other sites about the legal issues. In these digital days that includes the questions of digital property.

      That means amongst other things that even Cameron Slater should face up to the consequences of his criminal activities. Quite simply no-one is above the law.

      Now presumably if there was any actual criminal activity on Mr Blomfield’s part, then presumably complaints have been made to the police? If those weren’t correctly handled then let me know with documented details. I’d be particularly fascinated at the supporting documentation.

      • Ross 7.1.1

        He is a journalist. Not necessarily a good one but one nonetheless.

        • lprent 7.1.1.1

          Mickysavage tends to agree with you (especially about the “not … a good one”).

          I do not.

          Quite simply I think that he is trying to cover himself with the few protections granted to journalists without taking any of the responsibilities that are meant to prevent them from using that protection with a reckless disregard for others. In particular I find that his taking money from enemies to attack others is unconscionable.

          If that is the degenerate standard that journalism and journalists currently profess to, then I think that they need to have their protection on sources stripped out of the legal system.

          But it is a pretty simple choice for journalists to make.

          The reality is that if he and his “publisher” don’t act to the responsibilities of journalism then he is not one. I’d point out that on this site we don’t profess to be journalists (or actually want to be in most cases). But most of the time we do tend to act to similar levels of responsibility. It is simply good practice to do so if we want to survive over the longer term. That is why you also don’t find us in court on a regular basis defending our actions and getting convicted of being a sociopathic dickhead.

          • Ross 7.1.1.1.1

            I tend to agree. However, journalists are not necessarily always responsible and trustworthy. Slater doesn’t have a monopoly on bad journalism, though he’s arguably the worst offender.

            Steven Price, a media lawyer, seems to suggest that Slater is a journalist. Even if the Court rules that he can call himself a journalist, it may not be that helpful to his case.

            http://www.medialawjournal.co.nz/?p=622

          • Anne 7.1.1.1.2

            I think he is trying to cover himself with the few protections granted to journalists without taking any of the responsibilities that are meant to prevent them from using that protection with a reckless disregard for others. … I find that his taking money from enemies to attack others is unconscionable.

            Nothing new in that lprent.

            Back in the 1970s and 80s a woman infiltrated the Mt.Albert Labour Party and for up to 10 years she spied on numerous Labour activists and politicians. Helen Clark was one of them. She covered her ‘ass’ by getting herself Justice of the Peace status. I mean, who would think that such fine, upstanding members of the judicial system could be involved in unlawful behaviour.

            She was working undercover for the NZ Police. (your niece knows a bit about that sort of thing). She and her undercover mates (one in particular I know of who also infiltrated the Party) were responsible for all manner of dubious and, in some cases, very serious misconduct – conduct that would have seen them spend a bit of time in gaol had they been caught. But of course they were never caught…

            No surprises that John Key’s mentor, Muldoon was in office most of the time, and no surprises the same kind of thing is happening under John Key.

        • don 7.1.1.2

          A journalist does not take money to push certain points of view. Cameron does.

          http://www.thepaepae.com/as-playful-as-he-is-psychotic/26510/

          Listen to the audio. The video is no longer available. Cameron admits demanding money from PR companies to push their points of view. We’ve already had – um – media personalities say it is okay to push paid opinions because they are not journalist, but entertainers.

          Can’t have it both ways/

        • Don 7.1.1.3

          He’s not a journalist. Journalists do not demand money from PR companies to push certain points of view. Cameron does.

          http://www.thepaepae.com/as-playful-as-he-is-psychotic/26510/

          Listen to the audio – the video is no longer available. Cameron states he has demanded money to push opinions. He then tried to defend himself by claiming he didn’t actually get any. Maybe the IRD was interested?

          We’ve had Hoskings and others claim it was okay to take money from Sky City because they were not journalists – but entertainers.

          You can’t have it both ways.

          Odd, though. Hoskings takes money and entertainment from Sky City, and is back on TV1. Shane Taurima borrows a meeting room and is gone. If only he’d taken free hospitality and held his meetings at Sky City ….

    • Tracey 7.2

      My understanding is someone has posted a legal analysis of certain aspects of the crimes act and how this case might fit their criteria. I didn’t read into that any personal comment on the character f Mr Blomfield by the author.

      ” normally viewed as a class enemy by you and yours. And indeed would probably be your poster boy for all that is wrong with a free market, light handed regulation economy.”

      Perhaps because the legal parameters of this particular case extend beyond some ideological politic ax grinding and could impact on many more people and organisations than Mr Blomfield?

      Could you ever find yourself disagreeing with Slater or Farrar over anything at all?

  8. Matthew Blomfield 8

    “No mention or denial of the revelations published about Blomfields”

    The Ministry responded to an OIA request I made saying they spent 114k with Meredith Connell (Crown Lawyers). I was investigated by every government department sometime more than once as a result of Slater and his cohorts laying complaints. Those investigations are now complete. I have filed documents at Court showing that nobody will be taking any further action. What Slater said about me was made up and that is why I’m doing this, to prove that.

  9. Bazar 9

    Property provided to Slater copied was “stolen”:

    The law clearly defines theft according to the crimes act section 219 as taking control of.
    If you had an apple, and i took that apple from you. Thats theif because you no longer have the apple.

    In slaters case he made a copy. Thats not theif. The definition is quite clear on this point, as Blomfield still has his data.

    Property provided to Slater was unlawfully received:

    Same reasoning behind the law applies. The law is defined by the goods being transferred.
    The data wasn’t transferred, it was copied.
    Thus this section isn’t applicable either for the data.

    The obvious flaws:
    To work around this obvious requirements, you’ve substituted the data with the physical container the hard-drive.
    If you want to pursue Slater over the theft of a hard-drive, sure maybe this has grounds to proceed.
    Otherwise you’re trying to convict him of a crime that isn’t applicable.

    Stealing isn’t the same thing as copyright infringement. That should be painfully clear to anyone in the legal industry.

    Accessing computer system for dishonest purpose

    This might have some grounds, but without knowing how he came into possession of the data, i feel you have questionable grounds to proceed.
    Its also based on if slater acted on “dishonesty”, as otherwise the law doesn’t apply. And such an assumption is also questionable, as he may have felt he was entitled to the data.

    Being a media reporter, if he was given the data, its not unreasonable to expect there was no “dishonesty” on his part.

    But this is subjective, and i expect no lawyer would be certain on this without it going to court.
    But i’d say its in Slaters favour

    Accessing computer system without authorisation

    This is the only law that i feel has a reasonable chance of actually being unlawful. But again it depends in large on how slater came into possession of the hard-drive.

    • lprent 9.1

      In slaters case he made a copy. Thats not theif. The definition is quite clear on this point, as Blomfield still has his data.

      I think you mean theft. However your interpretation that taking a copy of data is not theft would come as a shock to many people who thought that they owned intellectual property. Specifically creators and publishers of books, music, video, blog posts, and even emails.

      I believe that Mr Blomfield doesn’t have his own data. I can’t recall any mention of the documents and disks being returned to him. This is part of the reason that the only parts of the discovery motion in the defamation that Slater was so desperate to fight were all to do with who supplied him access to them.

      Being a media reporter, if he was given the data, its not unreasonable to expect there was no “dishonesty” on his part.

      I think that I described my view of him being a journalist with qualified privilege under the evidence act (what you are groping for with your brand new definition of a “media reporter”) as something like “he isn’t a journalists arsehole”. That is because he appears to be incapable of carrying the responsibilities that come with that role.

      However under the 2003 changes to the Crimes Act (as the post points out) merely holding copies of that information without authority is both illegal and doesn’t appear to have any protection for journalists.

      I think your opinion about the law hasn’t caught up with the changes made to protect data.

      • Bazar 9.1.1

        “your interpretation that taking a copy of data is not theft would come as a shock to many people who thought that they owned intellectual property. Specifically creators and publishers of books, music, video, blog posts, and even emails.”

        You’re right, it probably would come as a shock.
        But the list of professions listed didn’t include lawyers because lawyers (should) understand the law.

        As i explained before, theft isn’t copyright, and lawyers should know so.
        Calling copyright infringement as theft shows you don’t understand the difference, which is night and day.

        Theft requires property to be lost or transferred from one party to another. That is basically the legal definition of theft.
        When someone makes a copy, the original party doesn’t lose anything. If nothing is lost, how can there be theft?

        We do have protections on what can be copied. We call that copy right, copyright, and its legal right granted to all authors of creative works.
        Copyright infringement is the violation of that right in an act or use of material you weren’t authorized to publish/copy.

        If you still can’t understand the difference, Google it.

        “I think that I described my view of him being a journalist [as he isn't, so gets no such perks]”

        The only way he can be guilty of violating section 249 is if he acted BOTH dishonestly AND without claim of right.

        This is very subjective, and has very deep meanings that i’m not well versed enough to resolve. Let alone any precedents i’m unaware of.

        But i’ll put it this way, it worked for the vandals of the waihopai spy base. They thought they had claim of right, as they went on a rampage, and the courts agreed.

        And even if Slater is deemed not to have claim of right, we go back to “dishonesty”.
        Does his belief that hes sees himself a media reporter and its his duty mean he acted honestly?

        These are all questions i don’t have the answer to, and my opinion is that anyone who thinks they do and isn’t the presiding judge is probably full of themselves.

        “However under the 2003 changes to the Crimes Act (as the post points out) merely holding copies of that information without authority is both illegal and doesn’t appear to have any protection for journalists.”

        And if you read what i said, you’d see i said this was the only point that was likely to stick.

        “I think your opinion about the law hasn’t caught up with the changes made to protect data.”

        Coming from someone who doesn’t know the difference between theft and copyright infringement, that’s a bold statement to make.

        • lprent 9.1.1.1

          It is pretty clear especially when you read Hansard that the Crimes act was extended to cover digital property including the right to hold exclusive control over who could access it.

          The only reason I brought up copyright was because you clearly we’re raising it as a false path. However there are rights of township of intellectual property on physical property as well in the Crimes Act.

          “The only way he can be guilty of violating section 249 is if he acted BOTH dishonestly AND without claim of right”

          Reread the post carefully. Use the links. There is a reason that the author said that they thought Slater was chargeable under at least three of four sections of the crimes act.

    • spector 9.2

      The arguments to justify why Cameron isn’t a criminal seem to be the same ones Cameron is currently using to say Kim Dotcom is. Maybe John Key can explain the difference :)

    • Matthew Blomfield 9.3

      Some points to note:

      (1) The original hard drive was given to the SFO.
      (2) Slater posted on his facebook that he was at the SFO on or about the time they got it.
      (3) I described the hard drive to the Police as a Western Digital with fading on one side as I had it sitting next to a window.
      (4) I then obtained a court order for its return directly to a data lab.
      (5) The drive was as described to the police.

      It is very easy to make some assumptions and decide that Slater had the original however, I will not be doing that until I have evidence as to that fact. The Police have the means to check these facts.

      Above also applies to the physical files.

      Lastly what Iprent said re changes to the Crimes Act

      Another point of note is that I obtained a hard drive which contained copies of some of my files and on it was video’s of Warren Powell and his kid dated after my last contact with him and before the stories ran on Whaleoil.

    • tamati 9.4

      I doubt that Slater could be done for copyright infringement. Copyright is protect artistic works and emails certainly aren’t artistic.

      • lprent 9.4.1

        Copyright is protect artistic works and emails certainly aren’t artistic.

        Incorrect. Copyright with some variations for particular media automatically covers every written and most other media work from schoolkids essays to blogs except where the copyright is waived in some way. E-mails are also covered.

        • tamati 9.4.1.1

          If that’s true, could Don Brash sue Nicky Hager for copyright infringement?

          • lprent 9.4.1.1.1

            You’ll note that this post doesn’t mention copyright at all?

            There are various rules under copyright about how much you may quote or play from someone elses work (commonly known as “fair use”) with attribution. For instance this is what allows us to quote sections of material published in newspapers.

            I know that Nicky Hager is pretty careful about what he publishes to make sure that it conforms to the legal position.

            I haven’t looked, but I’d also bet that there are public interest provisions as well.

            Don Brash could have (and did) lay a complaint with the police. The problem with emails is that there is at least one recipient and frequently many. My understanding of it is that those recipients have been effectively been given rights to that emails content as well by the sender unless it is explicitly removed by legal waffle in the email (and even that is somewhat legally dubious as there is no agreement by the recipient).

            As I understand it, the actual source of the emails where the emails were taken and/or given from was never tied down. So there was no valid complainant. One or more of the valid recipients may have given emails to Nicky Hager and they’d have had a legal right to do so. Which incidentally is what I believe Nicky Hager claims.

            That uncertainty about source doesn’t apply in Mr Blomfield’s case as it is clear and admitted by Mr Slater that the material he worked off comes from a copies of material that Mr Blomfield had not given authority to access or copy. It means at the very least at some point that a simple theft of property happened under the 2003 amendments to the Crimes Act.

            Mr Slater is at least guilty of receiving stolen goods and probably quite a lot more – as the post says.

      • Tracey 9.4.2

        Wrong. copyright applies to anything created, not creative.

    • Tracey 9.5

      “Same reasoning behind the law applies. The law is defined by the goods being transferred.
      The data wasn’t transferred, it was copied.
      Thus this section isn’t applicable either for the data.”

      Could you provide your case law in support of this proposition?

  10. marty 10

    I for one am uncomfortable with The Standard being used as a vehicle to litigate a case that’s in the courts.Complainants don’t go to blogs to have their court case discussed while they are still trying to get the case processed through legal means.

    No matter how much you may dislike Slater personally, it does this blog no credit by trying to influence the courts.

    Everything is stated as fact, whereas none of us have any basis for knowing what is true and what isn’t. Worse, there is no process for having an error, lie or lie by omission corrected.

    I love coming here, but I really hope this is the last time you let this happen. I like to think we’re better than that piece of shit over at the Whale boil.

    This stinks :(

    • lprent 10.1

      Complainants don’t go to blogs to have their court case discussed while they are still trying to get the case processed through legal means.

      …by trying to influence the courts.

      From a blog? You do have a low opinion of high court judges which is where the civil defamation case is currently on appeal.

      However if you have a closer look at this post than the very brief glance you gave it, you’ll find that this was all about a criminal case that the author felt should have been pursued by the police. It is a civil case between Slater and Blomfield. So are you saying that the performance of the police shouldn’t scrutinised because of a civil case?

      After all the civil case isn’t likely to be over for several years. If I understand your odd position, you’re saying that the police position on a complaint should not scrutinized until then? Seems foolish to me. Not to mention that if they don’t take action on this then it is pretty clear that what the MPs intended back in 2003 (read the Hansard record) is not how the police are interpreting it (except of course when John Key is accidentally taped).

      Everything is stated as fact, whereas none of us have any basis for knowing what is true and what isn’t. Worse, there is no process for having an error, lie or lie by omission corrected.

      Read the links (took me a while to add them to the submitted unlinked post). All of the material in this post is in the links to the submitted public court documents except for the information about the police response to the complaint against Cameron Slater.

      The reason that this is being raised here is because it concerns bloggers, electronic data, police, and the legal position of them all. Are you saying that because this civil case involves all of them that we can’t comment on any of them?

      It seems to me that these are exactly the types of issues that should be discussed on a political blog. They all cut to the legal heart of the medium we’re working on. It is a hell of a lot easier to discuss them on a real case rather than a hypothetical. Which is of course why law schools discuss both real cases and current cases. For that matter why politicians do as well. They (like us) are just cautious on what gets discussed.

    • Tracey 10.2

      Unlike our PM I would be surprised to learn that our judges read political online blogs such as WO, TS or kiwiblog.

      To my knowledge no one has been prevented from posting the legal argument opposing that proffered in the Opening post? Bazar tried to masquerade as a legal opinion but fell short in a number of quarters BUT was nonetheless a useful piece for discussion of different aspects of copyright and IP.

      John Banks’ case has also been widely scrutinised on here, as has the DotCom stuff, do you find those posts offensive too?

  11. nadis 11

    I think it’s OK to discuss the case here on the grounds lprent points out, but not sure it’s wise for involved parties to air opinions and views. Every time I have been involved in litigation (as a witness or expert witness) I’ve been under strict instructions to stfu. No good can from it. No chance of managing a judges opinion, no possible upside, but you can certainly piss them off.

    • lprent 11.1

      No chance of managing a judges opinion, no possible upside, but you can certainly piss them off.

      That is indeed the downside. You’ll notice that Mr Blomfield has only offered clarifications to queries or what can readily be perceived as queries. Most of this is material that has been offered up in court in public view of the media. For instance as in this article in the mornings herald on sunday – http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11208097

      It is also why I’ve never met or talked to Mr Blomfield or Mr Slater about this case. I’m not that interested in spending time in court testifying.

      Everything with Mr Blomfield has been over email and generally sticks to the topic of making the posts readable or clarifying some points.

      I have offered my personal opinions on Cameron Slater and his work as a blogger. However that is hardly public news – you only have to read my posts and comments on him to find that out. Anyone who wants to put that into evidence is welcome to do so.

    • Tracey 11.2

      Ah the stfu approach to getting to the truth of the matter.

      Mr Blomfield is a big boy, I am sure he has weighed up the pros and cons of posting anything. If he hasn’t then he will suffer the consequences, no one else.

      • Matthew Blomfield 11.2.1

        If the Police decided to charge Slater it would be their Court case not mine. I have limited my disclosure of details relating to the defamation case and will continue to do so. This is a opinion that was given to me from an individual who was surprised that the Police never charged Slater. I myself am pretty light when it comes to criminal law.

  12. tricledrown 4
    23 February 2014 at 5:54 pm

    If Camoron Slater is found guilty
    Of being in posession of stolen goods and accessing someones personal files it could mean Gaol for the twice convicted criminal.

    So… that’ll mean Three Strikes?

    Hmmmm…

    Not quite what the Right had in mind when they passed that piece of legislation, I’m sure.

  13. One Anonymous Bloke 13

    The trend in recent times when personal information was accidentally disclosed had been for people to “get on to their newspaper”, he said. “I’d like people to be thinking about data they come across accidentally in the same way they might treat a wallet they find in the street. You . . . take steps to ensure it gets back to the rightful owner.”

    DomPost quoting John Edwards.

    John Key’s mate isn’t a journalist. He has this material illegally. I can’t see any benign reason for him to make a copy. In fact he freely admits his malice.

    I think John Key should phone him up and get him to do the right thing.

  14. captain hook 14

    Hybris is wating for slater and I reckon it cant be that far away.
    he plays fast and loose with all the laws of this country and soon enough he will trip up.
    although its hard to trip up a slug being as they are so low to the ground.
    maybe just a good spray of raid.

  15. SHG (not Colonial Viper) 15

    The author of this post is giving legal advice. What are his qualifications for doing so?

    [lprent: I can see where you're heading.

    It is someone that knows how to read legislation. That could be anyone from a law student to me to a QC. It is completely irrelevant because there is no client relationship between the readers of this site and whoever it is. Basically you're as usual simply full of stupid unthinking and pig-ignorant insinuation without bothering to explicitly describe what you are trying to say. It irritates me.

    Furthermore Mr Blomfield has no-one acting for him as legal representation. He is representing himself. You could have just read the post.

    I am a supporter of Mr Blomfield’s. I have assisted him with his case and the issues relating to Mr Slater. But this is my opinion of the law as I see it, backed up by some very intensive research.

    and

    I personally think that what Mr Slater has done is unconscionable and the thought of an individual having access to every aspect of someone’s entire adult life is appalling.

    Which is approximately the reason I've been assisting by bringing the questions incurred by Mr Slater's arsehole behaviour as a blogger to more public attention.

    There are different rules when I'm moderating and forced to answer questions directed into the ether and therefore aimed at the site and myself. Banned for 4 weeks for being too coy to say directly what you mean, 4 weeks for asking a question that was clearly in the post, and 4 weeks for wasting my time answering your silly question. Lets call it the 19th of May ]

  16. Tracey 16

    who is he giving advice to?

    reads like an analysis to me.

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    The Māori Party has to fess up over its voting record on the Employment Relations Amendment Bill, says Labour’s Māori Caucus.  “It’s simply not good enough to oppose the bill at the same time  as they helped speed up its progress through...
    Labour | 29-10
  • Equal pay and the aged care sector
    Today the High Court upheld the historic ruling by the Employment Court that our Equal Pay Act could be used to consider work of equal value cases; the government has been telling the UN and ILO that it could for...
    Greens | 29-10
  • Court case perfect opportunity for Government to improve gender pay gap
    If the Government wants to halt New Zealand’s slump in international rankings on the gender pay gap it should act on the court finding that women deserve equal wages, Labour’s Women’s Affairs spokesperson Sue Moroney says. “The World Economic Forum’s...
    Labour | 28-10
  • All Auckland transport options should be considered
    All options for meeting Auckland's transport needs should be considered, including reprioritising the transport budget away from wasteful spending on motorways, the Green Party said today.Auckland mayor Len Brown is today releasing a transport report by the Independent Advisory Board,...
    Greens | 28-10
  • Another report highlights Govt failure on child poverty
    An international report measuring the impact of the Global Financial Crisis (GFC) on child poverty rates, showing children in New Zealand have done worse than children in other countries, is further proof the Government needs to urgently take additional steps...
    Greens | 28-10
  • Address and Reply Debate Part 55: Inequality and Disability
    I rise on behalf of the Green Party to talk about inequality and disability.The recent census showed that nearly one in four New Zealanders lives with a disability—up from one in five in the previous census. These figures include some...
    Greens | 28-10
  • Address and Reply Debate Part 55: Inequality and Disability
    I rise on behalf of the Green Party to talk about inequality and disability.The recent census showed that nearly one in four New Zealanders lives with a disability—up from one in five in the previous census. These figures include some...
    Greens | 28-10
  • Child poverty: No more wake-up calls
    A new report which shows the National Government has made no inroads whatsoever into child poverty should do more than just set alarm bells ringing, Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader Annette King says. “UNICEF’s  latest Innocenti Report Card highlights the fact...
    Labour | 28-10
  • Eugenie Sage speaks in the 2014 Address in Reply Debate
    I congratulate you, Assistant Speaker Mallard, as Assistant Speaker and look forward to your knowledge, your fairness, and your light touch in being a referee of proceedings in this House. I congratulate also the other Assistant Speaker, Lindsay Tisch; the...
    Greens | 28-10
  • James Shaw’s Maiden Speech
    Tena Koe, Mr Speaker. I would like to take this opportunity to speak a little of the past, the present and the future. The privilege to serve in this Parliament was given to me by all those who gave their...
    Greens | 28-10
  • Govt airs real views on public broadcasting
    An admission by the Government that it is happy to experiment with Pacific and Maori audiences shows just how weak its vision for public broadcasting in New Zealand is, Labour’s Broadcasting spokesperson Kris Faafoi says. “National today admitted it doesn’t...
    Labour | 28-10
  • Does Judith Collins have a get out of jail card?
    Former justice minister Judith Collins appears to have been gifted a get out of jail free card based on the Prime Minister’s answers in Parliament today, Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader Annette King says. “Judith Collins claimed in an Official Information...
    Labour | 28-10
  • Solid Energy decision delay sensible
    Today’s announcement by the Board of Solid Energy that it will delay making a final decision on re-entering the Pike River mine is a sensible move, Labour’s MP for  West Coast-Tasman Damien O’Connor says. “It has been clear for some...
    Labour | 28-10
  • New York Green Bank off to a $1B start
    New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced late last week the New York Green Bank’s first NZD$1 billion tranche of green energy investments. The projects, which are difficult for the private sector to finance, are now possible by New York Green...
    Greens | 28-10
  • Bartlett case means Govt must act on equal pay
    The Court of Appeal victory for Lower Hutt caregiver, Kristine Bartlett demonstrates that both the Government and employers have been ignoring and not fully implementing equal pay law, the Green Party said today.The Court of Appeal today upheld earlier rulings...
    Greens | 27-10
  • Rotorua shift for Maori TV a bizarre move
    The bizarre idea to move Maori TV to Rotorua is either poor planning or possible political interference that adds to the perception of a service in crisis, says Labour MP for Tamaki Makaurau Peeni Henare. “Moving Maori TV to Rotorua...
    Labour | 27-10
  • Second rate deal a no go – Goff
    A second rate deal on dairy in the TPP would totally contradict the agreed purpose of the Pacific trade agreement, Labour’s Trade spokesperson, Phil Goff says. “Both the origin of the trade negotiations and leaders’ statements on its objectives emphasise...
    Labour | 27-10
  • Legal victory a boost for all working women
    Today’s legal victory for equal pay is a much-needed boost for working women at a time when the Government is pushing through reforms which will make it harder for them to get pay rises, Labour’s Women’s Affairs spokesperson Sue Moroney...
    Labour | 27-10
  • National’s failed commodities export strategy exposed
    National's strategy to rely on commodities such as milk powder and logs has been exposed in the September trade figures released today, the Green Party said."National's strategy to hang all economic hope on exporting ever-increasing volumes of milk powder and...
    Greens | 23-10
  • Caution needed on calls to arm police
    There is no justification for routinely arming our police and doing so would change forever the way officers interact with their communities, Labour’s Associate Police spokesperson Kelvin Davis says. “As one of the few organisations distinguished by its unarmed status,...
    Labour | 23-10
  • Govt strains to get tea break law through
    The Government has been left with egg on its face - failing to get its much-vaunted, but hugely unpopular, meal break law passed in the first week of its new term, Labour spokesperson on Labour Issues Andrew Little says.“National desperately...
    Labour | 23-10
  • How low can you go? Mining the depths
    The company says there will be economic benefits, which the EEZ Act says the EPA must consider, but even these benefits are in doubt. The royalties while not set will be tiny, the profits will flow offshore, and whatever phosphate...
    Greens | 23-10
  • Fed Farmers defend GE Agriculture
    Federated Farmers, which represents a minority of farmers, appears to be captured by a pro-GE clique hell bent on increasing unsustainable technologies for the benefit of the herbicide and patent controlling seed companies. That there are better more sustainable farming...
    Greens | 23-10
  • Government loses the affordable housing race
    Nick Smith is dreaming if he thinks he can deliver affordable housing to Cantabrians on his current figures, says Labour’s Associate Housing spokesperson Poto Williams. “The Minister’s announcement that the Government will build 237 new homes, most of which will...
    Labour | 23-10
  • Labour’s thoughts with Canadians
    Labour has offered its sympathies to the family and friends of the Canadian soldier who died in what appears to be a premeditated and unprovoked attack while standing at guard at the Ottawa National War Memorial. “Our thoughts are also...
    Labour | 23-10
  • What next for TVNZ? Outsourcing the news?
    Television New Zealand’s decision to outsource Māori and Pacific programming is a real blow to the notion that our state broadcaster is a public broadcaster, says Labour. “CEO Kevin Kenrick has said today that TVNZ has ‘a very long and...
    Labour | 22-10
  • Green Party expresses sympathy for Canadian shooting victims
    The Green Party expressed its solidarity with Canadians and the Canadian Parliament today, offering its sympathy for family and friends of the soldier killed in the attack. "Our thoughts are with all those caught up in the shooting in Canada...
    Greens | 22-10
  • Poverty & inequality don’t need protest marches – they need a riot:...
    The global level of inequality continues to skyrocket… Number of billionaires doubled since financial crisis The number of billionaires has doubled since the start of the financial crisis, according to a major new report from anti-poverty campaigners. According to Oxfam,...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • If Key knows who Rawshark is…
    I’m sorry, what? John Key ‘given Rawshark’s name’The Prime Minister believes he knows who hacked Whale Oil blogger Cameron Slater’s computer and produced the source material for Nicky Hager’s Dirty Politics, according to a new edition of a recently published...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • Child Poverty stats in NZ
    Child Poverty stats in NZ...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • Crimes Act + Police Investigation = WTF
    Just to frame the farce that is the Roastbuster’s investigation and conclusion – here are the parts of the Crime Act http://www.legislation.govt.nz/act/public/1961/0043/latest/whole.html#DLM329057  the Roastbusters are proven to have violated – that the police (and some suspects!) themselves acknowledge occurred: Crimes...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • Publishing Journalists’ Home Addresses Is A Tactic Of The Right, Not The ...
    I think I’m starting to get rather annoyed with the conduct of some pro-MANA people over this ongoing Parliamentary Services crew complement issue. Yes, we get that there are legitimate issues to be raised with how some political reporters in...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • Aucklanders caught between a tarseal-addicted government and a weak mayor
    Len Brown’s proposal for motorway tolls to reduce congestion and provide funding for better public transport is a weak response to a critical issue. The $12 billion dollar shortfall on transport funding he talks about is mainly for projected new...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • A Very Weird Story: Deconstructing Darren Aronofsky’s Noah.
    NOAH is a curious movie. Conceived as a biblical epic, it’s target audience was originally the millions of Americans who regard the Bible as God’s inerrant word. With the sin-filled works of Hollywood forbidden to these true-believers, Christian movie-makers have developed...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • You Can Get Away With Rape In New Zealand
    Jessie Hume with last years petition against rape     The police have sent a strong message today.  In fact they’ve been sending a strong message for a while; a message that our government supports. “You can literally get away...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • Roast Buster case – no charges. In the immortal words of NWA…
    Roast Busters case: No prosecutions Police are to make an announcement this afternoon on Operation Clover, the investigation into the “Roast Busters” allegations. The Herald understands the victim has been told that the alleged offenders will not be prosecuted due...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • Key’s flag change distraction to cost $26million!
    No. Way. Bid to change NZ flag to cost millions The cost of holding two referendums and consulting on a change of flag has been estimated to be just under $26 million. Look. We all appreciate that the sleepy hobbits...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • Why NZ Herald’s Labour Party crocodile tears are so audacious
    The front page the NZ Herald would use if they thought they could get away with it No one can take the recent columns by NZ Herald seriously… John Armstrong: Shadow lingers on National John Roughan: Labour’s leadership vote matters...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • The beginning of the end of Cameron Slater?
    Slater postings on man bizarre, court told A businessman has changed his appearance and had to install extra security at his home after Whale Oil blogger Cameron Slater posted his business and personal documents online, he says. Mr Slater has...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • We are a milk power republic and Fonterra our unelected senate
    Wow. Just wow… Deputy mayor says he’ll be sacked South Taranaki deputy mayor Alex Ballantyne says he expects to be sacked because he has spoken out about the impact gasses coming from dumped Fonterra dairy products have had on his...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • MEDIA WATCH: “…But *actually* this is about ethics in political-game jo...
    Yesterday, a piece of mine on the recent revelations about Hone Harawira employing several gentlemen either accused or convicted of sex offences was published on The Daily Blog. Predictably, given the fierce loyalty which Hone inspires in his party faithful and...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • Privilege cheque
    There was no race problem in my childhood. Living in central Wellington I was well-insulated from what was going on not so far away. This was the 60s and 70s, where the teachers enjoyed free love in the staff room...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • A brief word on Key’s claim that it will be raining carnage
    Isis will ‘rain carnage on the world’ – John Key Left unchecked Isis would “rain carnage on the world”, Prime Minister John Key says, but he has yet to make a decision on whether New Zealand troops will join a...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • Meanwhile…
    ...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • How does Andrew Little win Labour Leadership and unify the caucus?
    Audrey Young’s excellent column on how the Caucus vote  is shaping up shows how Andrew Little becomes the next leader of the Labour Party. She identifies the factions as the following… Andrew Little 6: Andrew Little, David Cunliffe, Iain Lees Galloway,...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Joe Trinder – Right of response to Curwen
    You have asked that Hone Harawira deserves to explain what happened, how would he explain when his next door neighbour is an alleged sex offender. What explanation can Hone offer he wasn’t involved, Hone had no idea this offending was...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • MEDIA WATCH: That Hella-Weird Feeling When You Defend Tova O’Brien
    Oh dear. Yesterday morning I blogged that Hone deserved a chance to explain what exactly had happened as applies his office’s Parliamentary Services crew complement – and, importantly, that we deserve to be able to judge him on the strength of...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • Canadian Green MP warns against harsh anti-terror measures
    Canada’s Green Party has provided a welcome counterpoint to Prime Minister Harper’s call for tougher anti-terrorism laws in the wake of a soldier outside the Canadian Parliament. On October 22, while she was still locked in her parliamentary office, Green...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • When is an asset sale not an asset sale? When it robs from the poor and ste...
    National have turned state housing on its head. At no time during the 2014 election did the Key Government even hint that they were going to privatise 30% of the Housing NZ stock of state homes. Not once. Key even...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • Housing; broken promises, families in cars, and ideological idiocy (Part To...
    . . Continued from: Housing; broken promises, families in cars, and ideological idiocy (Part Rua) . Bill English comes clean on National’s intentions for HNZ privatisation . On 14 October, in a report on The Daily Blog, I wrote, In...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • The Questions Have Been Asked – They Deserve An Answer
    A few days ago, allegations that had been percolating for some time about Hone Harawira employing three either accused or convicted sex offenders on his Parliamentary pay-roll came to light. (one imprisoned before working for MANA; one who found himself convicted and...
    The Daily Blog | 26-10
  • I have seen one future, and it is bleak
    . . Back in  March 2012, I wrote this story regarding a march to support striking workers at Ports of Auckland. It appears there was some prescience about some of my observations at the time… . | | 18 March...
    The Daily Blog | 26-10
  • US air strike war Key wants us in has killed a civilian a day so far
      The US air strike war that John Key wants us to join has killed a civilian a day so far. From the Washington Post... The United States launched its first airstrikes on militants in Syria on Sept. 23, and has continued...
    The Daily Blog | 26-10
  • The instant Jihad syndrome
    My favourite new term is ‘self-radicalised’ – it suggests the reasons for terrorism are totally divorced from the actions of the West. This need to suddenly ramp up terror laws because of lone wolf, self-radicalised Jihadists seems convenient and counter-productive....
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • We have nothing to fear from Ebola but fear itself
    I suspect most Americans perceive Ebola like this   I can’t work out if the fear being spread within the media about Ebola is deliberate or just ignorance. Yes Ebola is a terrible plague that kills a large percentage of...
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Anjum Rahman – “Meritocracy? I wish.”
    I’d like to start by linking to a post I had published at another site in support of Nanaia Mahuta for the Labour Party leadership election.  She has a reasonable chance, given that she already has the endorsement of Te...
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • Chocolate milk shortage and creepy Santa? Let’s talk about real news
    Child poverty is still a scarily serious problem in this country and house prices are soaring through the roof to the point where it is simply impossible for the average New Zealander to buy a home. There is also little...
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • It’s time to celebrate Kiwi schools and teachers
    Some would have you believe that New Zealand’s schools are in a state of collapse, that your children are not being educated well and that things are going to hell in a hand basket.  That there is no innovation, no...
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • Ideological Blitzkrieg – Privatization of state housing, more charter sch...
    Pundits in pundit land will tell you that this Government is boring, that Key is the great pragmatist and that it is his ability to create elegant solutions that keeps him the firm favourite in many Kiwi eyes. This ability...
    The Daily Blog | 24-10
  • Hegemony rules but resistance is fertile
    The Prime Minister is a puppet. Not just our current Prime Minister, but given the forces of multinational globalisation, the role of any head of state, is less as independent actor, and more as a puppet of international trends and...
    The Daily Blog | 24-10
  • An open Letter to Sir Bob Jones: demanding a ‘liveable wage’ is not “...
    How out of touch with reality is Sir Bob Jones? You know, that white dude who invested in privatised SOEs after the selling off of our assets in the eighties and made a ludicrous and disgusting amount of money and is...
    The Daily Blog | 24-10
  • My insecurity about the Security Council
    As I write this (on 24 October) it is international UN Day. Of course, you all knew that already, right? Well, the day celebrates the entry into force of the UN Charter in 1945. With the ratification of this founding...
    The Daily Blog | 24-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Catherine Delahunty – Back in That House
    Parliament opened this week and I still find it a very odd place. Most of the people are reasonably courteous and friendly, but the rituals are archaic and the rules around issues like the swearing in oath are oppressive and...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • Marae Investigates No More
    TVNZ yesterday announced the closure of their Māori and Pacific programmes department. That means they’ve chosen to stop making Fresh, Tagata Pasifika, Waka Huia and Marae Investigates to let independent producers get their hands on these lucrative contracts. This is...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • BLOGWATCH: An Un-Civil War in Labour, eh?
    Earlier today, my attention was directed to an entry that’s just recently appeared on the Slightly Left of Centre blog. It purports to contain the ‘inside word’ from a highly placed NZF source – which is funny, because I’m pretty sure...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • Santanomics 101
    Santanomics could mean a number of things. It could be the study and practice of giving. Or it could mean the study and practice of rampant end-of-year commercialism. However, for me today it is the economics of erectingAuckland’s giant Santa...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • SkyCity boss misleads public over workers lost shifts
    SkyCity CEO Nigel Morrison has defended the employment practices at his company in an “Opinion” piece entitled “Human Capital key to corporate success” in the NZ Herald on Thursday. A number of his claims are misleading, contain only partial truths...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • Review: Perfect Place
    I went to a Perfect Place on Tuesday night, and what a delight it was. The marshmallows sweetly (and forcefully) handed out pre-show, set the tone for the next hour. Walking up the stairs at The Basement was a complete...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • 5AA Australia – NZ on UN Security Council + Dirty Politics Lingers On
    5AA Australia: Selwyn Manning and Peter Godfrey deliver their weekly bulletin Across The Ditch. General round up of over night talkback issues: Thongs, Jandals and flip-flops… ISSUE 1: New Zealand has been successful in its campaign to become a non...
    The Daily Blog | 22-10
  • When I mean me, I mean my office & when I call whaleoil I mean not as m...
    This. Is. Ludicrous. Green Party co-leader Russel Norman put the first of what are likely to be many questions about Mr Key’s relationship with Slater, asking him how many times he had phoned or texted the blogger since 2008. “None...
    The Daily Blog | 22-10
  • A brief word on describing the Government as ‘boring and bland’
    The narrative being sown is that this Government will be a boring and bland third term. Boring and bland. Since the election, Key has announced he is privatising 30% of state houses without reinvesting any of that money back into housing society’s most...
    The Daily Blog | 22-10
  • More Latté Than Lager: Reflections on Grant Robertson’s Campaign Launch.
    BIKERS? SERIOUSLY! Had Grant Robertson’s campaign launch been organised by Phil Goff? Was this a pitch for the votes of what few Waitakere Men remain in the Labour Party? Was I even at the right place? Well, yes, I was....
    The Daily Blog | 22-10
  • About Curwen Ares Rolinson
    Curwen Ares Rolinson – Curwen Ares Rolinson is a firebrand young nationalist presently engaged in acts of political resistance deep behind enemy lines amidst the leafy boughs of Epsom. He is affiliated with the New Zealand First Party; although his...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • About Kelly Ellis
    Kelly Ellis.Kelly Ellis – As a child, Kelly Ellis didn’t so much fall into the cracks, but willfully wriggled her way into them. Ejected from Onslow College – a big job in the 70s – Kelly worked in car factories,...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • About Kate Davis
    Kate Davis.Kate Davis – Having completed her BA in English and Politics, Kate is now starting her MA. Kate works as a volunteer advocate at Auckland Action Against Poverty and previously worked for the New Zealand Prostitutes Collective. Kate writes...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • Parker does a Shearer – oh for a Labour Leader who can challenge msm fals...
    Sigh. It seems David Parker has done a Shearer… Like a cult and too red – Parker on LabourLabour leadership contender David Parker says Labour borders on feeling like “a cult” and must look at its branding – including its...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • A brief word on the hundreds of millions NZ is spending on the secret intel...
    The enormity of the mass surveillance state NZ Government’s have built carries a huge price tag… Kiwis pay $103m ‘membership fee’ for spyingThe $103 million taxpayer funding of New Zealand’s intelligence agencies is effectively a membership fee for joining the...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • CTU Runanga calls on iwi leaders
    Maori workers are calling on iwi leaders to speak out against the employment law changes expected to go through today. “Iwi leaders have previously spoken out when workers in Aotearoa have been under attack, we believe they should do so...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Educating children not the best solution to alcohol harm
    Alcohol Healthwatch says we need to look beyond educating children and young people to address deeply embedded attitudes and behaviours concerning alcohol....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • New code of welfare for rodeos released
    New standards to strengthen the animal welfare requirements for rodeos have been issued today by the Minister for Primary Industries, Nathan Guy....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • IPCA report riddle with inaccuracies, say students
    A report by the Independent Police Conduct Authority into the policing of student protests in 2012 is riddled with inaccuracies, say students who laid the original complaint with the IPCA....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • CT v The Queen – indecency convictions quashed
    This summary is provided to assist in the understanding of the Court’s judgment. It does not comprise part of the reasons for that judgment. The full judgment with reasons is the only authoritative document. The full text of the judgment...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Rameka v The Queen – murder convictions quashed
    This summary is provided to assist in the understanding of the Court’s judgment. It does not comprise part of the reasons for that judgment. The full judgment with reasons is the only authoritative document. The full text of the judgment...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Auckland Council Out of Control
    Responding to the NZ Herald article that some Auckland households will face a rates rise of up to 9.6 per cent next year, Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director Jordan Williams says: “Len Brown’s pledge to cap rates rises at 2.5 per...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Stats NZ staff escalate action with ‘no more meetings’ rule
    Statistics NZ staff have voted to escalate their ongoing industrial action in an effort to get Stats NZ back to the bargaining table with a reasonable offer. The staff, who are members of the Public Service Association (PSA), have been...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Rape Crisis calls for changes to criminal justice system
    Wellington Rape Crisis has added its voice to the public outcry following the announcement that there will be no charges in the teen rape gang case. Butterworth says the decision not to lay charges will not have been a surprise...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Police action justified in Blockade the Budget demonstration
    Police actions in dealing with a demonstration in Central Auckland known as Blockade the Budget on 1 June 2012 were justified and appropriate, an Independent Police Conduct Authority report released today found....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • NZDF Joins with Australia to Commemorate WWI Centenary
    A contingent of New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) personnel will join their Australian counterparts at Australia’s first major commemoration of the First World War centenary in Albany, Western Australia this weekend....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Reserve Bank should reduce interest rate
    “The Reserve Bank should be reducing its policy interest rate, the OCR”, says CTU Economist Bill Rosenberg in response to the Bank’s announcement today that it is not increasing it....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • 2015 Stout Fellow will write about Māori & Criminal Justice
    Kim Workman, founder and advocate for the Robson Hanan Trust, which administers the Rethinking Crime and Punishment and Justspeak initiatives, has been awarded the 2015 John David Stout Fellowship at Victoria University....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • What John Key thought about ‘dirty politics’
    On September 20, John Key swept to victory to become one of New Zealand’s most successful and popular Prime Ministers. Rocked by scandal, the 2014 election campaign was one of the most brutal – and riveting – in recent history....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Trade Deal Threatens Farmers and Food Businesses
    The secret Trans Pacific Partnership negotiations are a direct threat to food businesses and farmers, and a moratorium on the release of GE crops must be enshrined in law before the TPP is signed....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • CTU announces election of new Secretary
    The contested election for the position of CTU Secretary has been won by Sam Huggard. Sam officially takes office on Monday 1 December 2014. Sam has worked in the union movement and brings a wealth of experience and a commitment...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Kim Workman awarded 2015 J.D. Stout Fellowship
    The Victoria University of Wellington 2015 J.D. Stout Fellowship, funded by the Stout Trust, has been awarded to justice reform advocate Kim Workman. Mr Workman (Ngati Kahungungu ki Wairarapa, Rangitaane) is well known for his work on criminal justice,...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • TPPA causing concern
    Concern over the secretive Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) negotiations is being expressed in two public meetings over the next week; one at a presentation on 5th November by former councillor Robin Gwynn to the Napier City Council, the...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Kiwis rally to demand justice for ‘Roast Buster’ survivors
    Over 1,500 kiwis have rallied to demand justice after the announcement of the NZ Police decision not to lay charges in the ‘Roast Busters’ saga....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • New employment law will hurt the most vulnerable NZers
    The Public Service Association (PSA) says changes to the Employment Relations Act, expected to be passed in Parliament tonight, will hurt vulnerable workers and their families more than anyone....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Consultation to close on proposed place names
    The New Zealand Geographic Board (NZGB) Ngā Pou Taunaha o Aotearoa today advised that only one month remains before public consultation closes for 18 name proposals for geographic features and places around Te Ika ā Māui (the North Island)....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Operation Clover – Statement from Police Commissioner
    I have taken a close interest in this investigation and I am confident police have conducted a thorough and professional enquiry in what has been a challenging and complex case. The Operation Clover team has ensured that victims have been...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Better policy would have protected children from recession
    Child Poverty Action Group says an international report released by UNICEF today shows good policy can protect and improve child well-being, even during a recession....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Outcome of Operation Clover investigation
    Police have completed a multi-agency investigation, Operation Clover, into the activities of a group calling themselves “The Roast Busters”. The 12 month enquiry focused on incidents involving allegations of sexual offending against a number of girls...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • False birth registration brings home detention
    A Whangarei woman who attempted to register the birth of a fictitious child to claim a sole parent benefit was sentenced to six months home detention in the Whangarei District Court today....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Family of Robert Ellis demand a proper investigation
    The family of a New Zealander killed in Indonesia are growing increasingly concerned at the lack of information they’ve received, and the handling of the investigation into his murder....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Minister of Health must account for aged care workers’ pay
    The New Zealand Federation of Business and Professional Women (BPW NZ) congratulates rest-home worker Kristine Bartlett on her landmark claim for equal pay from her employer and successfully pursuing this to the Court of Appeal....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Labour leadership candidates in Invercargill
    The four candidates for Labour Leader – Andrew Little, Nanaia Mahuta, David Parker and Grant Robertson - will be in Invercargill on Friday evening for a Husting meeting with members, as part of fourteen Husting Meetings being held nationwide as...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Public now needs to have its say over new tolls
    “I welcome the likes of new tolls and fuel taxes going out for public consultation after these matters have been talked about for 20 years. However the timing is not ideal as it comes on top of the likes of...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Kiwis to fight back against TPPA ‘corporate trap’
    New Zealanders in at least sixteen different locations around the country are organising for an International Day of Action against the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) on 8 November, co-ordinated by It's Our Future NZ. This is part of an international...
    Scoop politics | 28-10
  • Taxpayers’ Union Welcomes NZ First MP’s Resignation
    The Taxpayers’ Union is welcoming NZ First MP, Clayton Mitchell’s resignation from the Tauranga City Council, despite Party Leader Winston Peters' public comments in July that Mr Mitchell would do both jobs if elected to Parliament. The Union's...
    Scoop politics | 28-10
  • Stopping unnecessary roading projects solution to transport
    Today Auckland Council released the Funding Auckland’s Transport Future report which claims Aucklanders need to choose higher rates, petrol taxes or tolls to pay for future transport projects, when the real issue is the prioritisation of unnecessary...
    Scoop politics | 28-10
  • Fixing Auckland’s transport
    Today marks a critical step in the most important funding debate Auckland has ever had: whether or not Aucklanders are willing to pay for the transport system this city desperately needs to keep it moving, says Mayor Len Brown....
    Scoop politics | 28-10
  • The New Zealand Gazette Moves into the Digital Age
    On Monday 20 October, the New Zealand Gazette was published completely online bringing to a close 173 years as a purely printed publication. First published in 1841 as the official government newspaper, the Gazette website gazette.govt.nz , replaces...
    Scoop politics | 28-10
  • International report shows NZ struggling with child poverty
    A report by UNICEF International shows that child poverty rates in New Zealand have scarcely changed since 2008 – this stands in contrast to a number of other countries that managed to significantly reduce child poverty in this time, including...
    Scoop politics | 28-10
  • Labour leadership candidates in Dunedin
    The four candidates for Labour Leader – Andrew Little, Nanaia Mahuta, David Parker and Grant Robertson - will be in Dunedin on Thursday evening for a Husting meeting with members, as part of fourteen Husting Meetings being held nationwide as...
    Scoop politics | 28-10
  • UNICEF Report a Waste of Paper
    In response to the hysteria coming from the far left, Josh Forman of slightlyleftofcentre.co.nz writes the following:...
    Scoop politics | 28-10
  • Press Council opens doors to digital media
    The New Zealand Press Council, the body which handles complaints against newspapers and magazines and their websites, is offering associate membership status to news and commentary-oriented digital media including bloggers....
    Scoop politics | 28-10
  • Tolls Should Be for New Roads, Not Old Ones
    The Taxpayers’ Union is slamming Auckland Council for wanting to introduce a motorist tax under the guise of ‘tolls’. Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director, Jordan Williams, says:...
    Scoop politics | 28-10
  • Media freedom in West Papua: Protest at Indonesian embassy
    Today, Wednesday 29 October, there will be a peaceful protest at the Indonesian Embassy in Wellington to call on new Indonesian President Joko Widodo to honour his election promise to ensure greater media freedom in West Papua....
    Scoop politics | 28-10
  • Lack of leadership blamed for decline in Gender Equity
    BPW NZ challenges NZ’s lack of leadership with the decline in Gender Equity Ranking...
    Scoop politics | 28-10
  • Richard Falk visit to NZ
    Professor Richard Falk, who recently completed a six-year term as United Nations Special Rapporteur on Palestinian human rights, will deliver a public lecture in Dunedin on Monday 10 November....
    Scoop politics | 28-10
  • Apprehension for meat workers as employment law bill passes
    The passing of the Employment Relations Amendment Bill today will send a wave of apprehension through the workers in the NZ meat industry says the Meat Workers Union....
    Scoop politics | 28-10
  • “Yes to Children, No to Poverty” Says Commissioner
    Children’s Commissioner, Dr Russell Wills will describe impacts of poverty on children, with a focus on local solutions at the Tū Kaha biennial conference for Māori health for the central region DHBs at the Hawke’s Bay Racing Centre in Hastings...
    Scoop politics | 28-10
  • UNICEF report card highlights need for action
    Unicef’s child poverty report released today shows that New Zealand needs to be more proactive in pursuing policies to protect our most vulnerable members of society....
    Scoop politics | 28-10
  • Children of the Recession: NZ’s shame
    Children of the Recession : NZ’s shame Media release Wednesday 29 October 2014 “It is to New Zealand’s deepest shame that the latest Unicef report on children living in poverty ranks us 16th out of 41 developed countries. “Every day...
    Scoop politics | 28-10
  • UNICEF cautions NZ child poverty rates are “stagnating”
    An international report by UNICEF has found that child poverty rates in New Zealand have barely changed since 2008, despite similar sized countries significantly reducing child poverty during the recent recession....
    Scoop politics | 28-10
  • TPP Too Important for Compromised Finish
    The New Zealand dairy industry is urging Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) partners not to compromise on the quality of the deal to get it done quickly....
    Scoop politics | 28-10
  • Labour leadership candidates in Nelson
    Labour leadership candidates in Nelson The four candidates for Labour Leader – Andrew Little, Nanaia Mahuta, David Parker and Grant Robertson - will be in Nelson on Tuesday evening for a Husting meeting with members, as part of fourteen Husting...
    Scoop politics | 28-10
  • History is made. Equal pay not just legal but possible!
    The New Zealand Nurses Organisation (NZNO) congratulates Kristine Bartlett and the Service and Food Workers Union: Ngā Ringa Tota on their historic win. Today the Court of Appeal dismissed an appeal from Kristine’s employer; opening the way for...
    Scoop politics | 28-10
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