The Police Report into the Banks.com affair, which Labour has distributed to the media, is a gold mine. Banks is shown to be a liar and completely unethical.
It’s a huge report and things will keep being discovered, but here’s some of the remarkable points so far:
Banks insisted that Dotcom’s donation be anonymised saying “I want to help you, Kim, and I can help you more effectively if no one knows about this donation”.
Then – having said that anonymous donations would let him help Dotcom – Banks used the donations, which he had just a few days earlier told media he didn’t remember, as an excuse not to help Dotcom while a minister:
Gregory Powers, a partner at Simpson Grierson, told police Mr Banks telephoned him in February – a few weeks after Dotcom was arrested on US anti-piracy charges.
Only a few days earlier he had told media he hardly knew the internet tycoon.
In fact, Dotcom gave a $50,000 donation to Mr Banks’ campaign to be Auckland supercity mayor in 2010, which was declared as anonymous.
A witness statement from Mr Powers reveals he contacted Mr Banks, by then MP for Epsom, on February 8, to ask for his help in getting an additional mattress for Dotcom’s Mt Eden cell. Mr Banks called back the next day.
“John Banks said that as much as [he] wished to publicly support Kim that may backfire on Kim if it became known about the election support,” Mr Powers said. “He said he was very supportive however of Kim’s case.”
Then, there’s the SkyCity donation, which Banks’ campaign ‘disguised’ at the request of SkyCity.
SkyCity executives told police they made the donation openly after meeting a request for money from Len Brown, now the super city’s mayor.
The treasurer later rang SkyCity’s legal department to ask if it was an “anonymous” donation.
A friend who worked there told him it should be disguised – leading to questions when the donation to Mr Brown was later revealed.
Banks is lying low now. Farrar is desperately trying to run distraction for the Government. So was David Carter when he timed the announcement of changes of the local government election rules to coincide with the release of the OIA.
Key has to sack Banks, or spend the rest of the year being kicked around the House.