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A letter of thanks from Nicky Hager

Written By: - Date published: 2:31 pm, December 21st, 2015 - 71 comments
Categories: Abuse of power, activism, police, Politics, scoundrels - Tags: , , ,

Worth sharing. This arrived in my mailbox yesterday, and I was just musing this morning about how effective this example of cooperative action on the left had been. As Nicky Hager effectively points out, by donating this money for the legal costs of challenging this unlawful political search and intimidation, we get to help keep the arteries of democracy open. I’m certainly happy with the results thus far from my donation.

Incidentally I think that Assistant Commissioner Burgess is simply lying when he denies that this was political intimidation.  Ordered by politicians or done of his own volition, he has form at abusing the power of the police by involved in the political intimidation of critics of the government. The documented scale of the unlawful searches done into Nicky Hager’s private and work life without judicial oversight and with the complicity of a number of companies and government organisations was simply obscene and makes a mockery of Burgess’s claims that this was just another case.

And just for the record and the inevitable idiot trolls, over the decades I find that I agree with Nicky Hager on about two thirds of the conclusions of his books. However his facts are clear, and his arguments are based on those facts. It makes his books worth reading.

Anyway, this is what Nicky Hager has to say. He is characteristically somewhat more considered than I am. 😈


 

Dear friends,

On 2 October last year the police raided our home and I had the hugely encouraging experience of watching hundreds of you coming to my aid on Givealittle: giving money and, just as important, sending kind messages and giving moral support. The financial support made it easy for us to decide to launch legal action, asking the court to declare the police search unlawful and have my computers and files returned without the police getting access to them.

I hope you saw the news last week, where my lawyers Julian Miles, Felix Geiringer and Steven Price resoundingly won the first stage of the legal action. The High Court judge, Denis Clifford, declared that the police search had been “fundamentally unlawful”. It is a very important decision for New Zealand.

The court costs and other expenses for this stage (not including lawyers fees) were about $30,000. The police may yet appeal the decision (if they do I think their appeal will fail) but even without that we have two more court hearings coming on different parts of the case. Your combined Givealittle support has taken all the financial stress out of taking legal action, thank you, because we knew we had money to get us through.

There’s more of the case coming, including at some stage getting my gear back, but the most important decision is that one that happened last week. It firmly establishes a precedent that if investigative journalism produces work with a high public interest, then it deserves legal protection to ensure that the public can continue to receive important information about the actions of the powerful.

It takes many hands to win a case like this. Meg de Ronde and Rochelle Rees organised the Givealittle campaign. Adam Bolleau, Bryce Edwards, David Fisher, Gavin Ellis, Seymour Hersh and Wayne Stringer provided expert evidence. Many others gave advice and practical assistance. And you all helped the ship to float by your encouragement and by ensuring we could pay the bills. I am very grateful for you joining us in this fight.

Nicky Hager, 20 December 2015

71 comments on “A letter of thanks from Nicky Hager ”

  1. Ben 1

    No sympathy, Hager received stolen property and used it for his own financial gain. As the saying goes “You make the bed you lie in”.

    He gets the award for Hypocrite of the Year.

    • Lanthanide 1.1

      Yip, let’s just focus on the messenger, and not the message, eh?

      You should be equally (or more) upset at Whale Oil for working as a paid shill for various companies without publicly stating it.

      • Tracey 1.1.1

        Perhaps when hager embarrassed clark creating corngate, Ben was a fan? Of course that woud make him a hy…..e.

    • Kevin 1.2

      So by your fucked up reasoning Ben, Woodward and Bernstein should have been prosecuted?

      Seeing as how they worked for a newspaper that made money from selling newspapers…

    • fender 1.3

      Ben sleeping all ya life have you. The book was written to expose the dirty creeps and their MO

    • Tautoko Mangō Mata 1.4

      Hypocrite of the Year should surely go to John Key for bringing back Royal Honours while advocating for a flag with the Union Jack removed. Nicky Hager has integrity which is a quality which is poorly understood by many of the political right who just cannot understand people who do something for the good of others rather than the financial return.

      • greywarshark 1.4.1

        Altruism does not exist in neo liberal theory. All things done bring personal gain of some sort in their view, and therefore generous or sacrificial actions arise from the self-centred pursuit of goals or satisfaction .

      • Tautuhi 1.4.2

        The neoliberal philosophy worship the $, a social conscience does not enter the equation, it is all about how much money you have and the status attached to your net worth.

      • Tautuhi 1.4.3

        JK probably does not even understand the symbolism of the NZ Flag and its meaning, most Maori People I speak to are against changing the flag as the Union Jack represents the partnership between the Maori Chiefs and British Crown which was systematically undone by the Settlor Governments who failed to honor the TOW, tell JK to talk to Turnbull and get them to change their flag as they copied ours?

    • NZSage 1.5

      Yep Ben, in your world it’s all about the money eh?

    • lurgee 1.6

      No sympathy, Hager received stolen property and used it for his own financial gain. As the saying goes “You make the bed you lie in”.

      Yeah, bollocks. Hager identified a matter of important public interest and brought it to public attention.

      You’d be calling for Woodward, Bernstein and Deep Throat to be jailed, wouldn’t you?

    • Paulq 1.7

      What a hateful person you are.

    • Wainwright 1.8

      It’s called public interest and if you think there’s money in books do sod off and write one.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 1.9

      I’m sure the compensation payout will more than make up for the whinging wingnuts whinging and whinging and whinging 😆

    • savenz 1.10

      @Ben – is the government going to change the judiciary now, that they lose so often in court due to their constant illegal actions?

      Kelsey, Hager, underpaying of carers of disabled people, underpaying of beneficiaries….

      Welfare for financial gain… my first thoughts are Saudi businessmen in need of some charitable donations or SkyCity convention center hand outs to encourage more gambling….

    • JonL 1.11

      Pathetic clown!

  2. Tracey 2

    Kia kaha Nicky. Keep their feet to the fire.

  3. esoteric pineapples 3

    I find the most satisfying way of saying “stuff you” to people screwing up the environment, workers rights, etc is to make a donation to those fighting them. I highly recommend it to everyone.

    • lprent 3.1

      So do I. If they are rational, well argued, and reliant on facts in making their argument (right or wrong)* than I will support them. But I’m pretty selective and finicky about who I will support.

      It has been a pure pleasure supporting this one because of the clarity of the process. Because it was so well supported it will lead to a fundamental shift in how the police, crown bodies, and others are able to request ex parte search warrants and presumably other ex parte court orders. It is quite apparent that in this case that trust process was deliberately abused (just as it was with this case Judge scammed by a legal idiot and his pet pest).

      In this case the abuse of the duty of candor was by the lay police rather than a lay civilian. However in either case is there is no real recourse by the court for being lied to (by omission) in the way that there would be for a member of the bar. Perhaps that should be changed. In my view the law should be changed so that contempt of court proceeding could be initiated against the individuals making such submissions by the judiciary for such breaches of trust.

      I’m just reading the decision of Justice Clifford at present (Hager v Attorney General (PDF 500K)). There isn’t a lot of scope for the police to appeal in that unless they want to try to overturn the common law of the duty of candour in ex parte applications.

      * ie not one of those nutty ‘justice” hang-em-high freaks at LF pursuing their own vendettas (read almost any post at LF), or the slavering ratings watching hypocrites at Whaleoil or most of the shock jock radio/tv shows (thing of that idiot Mike Hosking as an example – he makes Cameron Slater look rational).

      • One Anonymous Bloke 3.1.1

        It has been a pure pleasure supporting this one

        Ditto.

        it will lead to a fundamental shift…

        You are confident in this conclusion?

        • George Hendry 3.1.1.1

          One is never sure, except to say that more will have been achieved than would have been gained by doing nothing.

          To me this looks like real democracy in action, transparent all the way, from the ground up and in response to the genuine leadership that Mr Hager has provided. Not that I imagine he would ever wish to be PM, this looks like the way a real PM would behave.

          Perhaps LPrent would be kind enough to give us Nicky’s account details again (could simply ask Westpac) so we can start funding the next case.

          • One Anonymous Bloke 3.1.1.1.1

            I agree with both of your first two paragraphs, and I’m still curious as to the source of lprent’s optimism.

            I can see why Justice Clifford’s judgement and Pete George vs. Rabid Fuckwit are relevant…I probably just need to think about it for longer.

            Perhaps it’s that lawyers become judges…only human and all that…

            Nope – maybe these cases set a precedent…which other judges are required to consider? Genuine question – if so, how does it affect the tendency for establishment types to issue warrants?

            • George Hendry 3.1.1.1.1.1

              Caveat – I prefer being optimistic because being pessimistic is just too depressing and needlessly damaging to the quality of life.

              That said, this looks like a model for future democratic involvement, a highly effective, peaceful (and all the more effective longterm for being so) and concerted social response to police corruption and political malfeasance. A ‘Nicky Hager focus group’ affair which has to be reckoned with by corrupt rulers when plotting their next deviancies.

              No one donates mindlessly to a cause like this, as those of us who do will all be aware that to do so is to stick our necks out to some degree. Awareness, plus working together, plus keeping at it, one brick at a time, average social awareness rises ever so gradually till one day we all know too much to elect a court jester ever again.

              They don’t like us watching, they know they’re corrupt, or why would they lie about it so. We have to keep watching them, and part of that consists in the risk we take to do it. Through risk and pain society grows up.

  4. wyndham 4

    Aii power to you Nicky – – – and to that wonderful sister of yours.

  5. Chooky 5

    Go Nicky Hager and family …have a great Xmas and holiday !

    …we will toast you Nicky Hager for fighting for and upholding democracy through fearless investigative journalism!

    • Tautuhi 5.1

      Apart from Nicky Hagar who actually has a pair of g****s, Investigative Journalism is virtually dead in NZ, close similarities to East Germany and the Stasi Network.

  6. lurgee 6

    If the right were capable of coherent, logical thought, they’d be as appalled by the police raid on Hager as the left. It represents a disturbing abuse of power by the state. Any principled rightwinger would be able to look beyond the tribal aspect of “their team” being discomfited and see that “their team’s” behaviour was worrying for people opposed to the state apparatus acting as an unlawful bully.

    • lprent 6.1

      It happens irrespective of the flavour of the government. The police cases against animal rights activists or the tuhoe camps and just about every activist left group in the last Labour government suffered from exactly the same level of institutional intimidatory stupidity in the police and a blatant disregard of the process of the law by them. The only real difference was the lack of a direct political motivation from the government of the day.

      The desired effect appeared in all of these cases to be a chilling of the level of peaceful debate in society. Hell, from the police tactics it appeared to me like they wanted to force people to go underground to provide them with better sport…

      • Tautuhi 6.1.1

        I don’t think we have particularly smart/intelligent people in the NZ Police or Security Services here in NZ, the quality of intelligence information is often questionable ie the raid on the Puha Gang in the Ureweras which made world headlines, based on a terrorist cell in the outbacks of NZ, it is all designed to put fear into the hearts of New Zealanders that we are under threat and observation by our own security services. Sick society we live in.

        • One Anonymous Bloke 6.1.1.1

          If intelligent New Zealanders are attracted to other professions than police work, what would be unusual about that?

          Are cops in other countries noted for their IQ?

    • Pat 6.2

      except that historically the power of the state (read deep state) supports the “right”…so perhaps its not surprising the right is unconcerned

  7. Pat 7

    it shows the measure of the man….I doubt the same would occur from his opponents direction…certainly not wth the same tone.

  8. Whateva Next 8

    Great that Nicky felt buoyed by the tangible support, and cannot think of any other way the appalling behaviour of govt ministers using an attack blog to do their dirty deeds, would have been exposed.The ends justify the means, so let’s not get distracted by nonsense arguments about “stolen emails”.

  9. Mulling it over 9

    Greg O’Connor gave a excellent example of the “straw man” technique on Morning Report today, when he told us that there wasn’t a political advisor in the police force pulling the strings.
    Was anyone else concerned about his comment (haven’t had time to do a transcript) the gist of which was that the Police pay more attention to cases that have a high media profile?

  10. Pat 10

    lol…Mr O’Connor lost credibility a long time ago…am surprised RNZ settled for a comment from him…obviously no one in a position of authority was willing to comment

  11. Wainwright 11

    Nice one Nicky,.

  12. Manuka AOR 12

    The best news, leading into the new year..

    Cheers!

  13. savenz 13

    Well done Nicky Hager for standing up in such a humble and intelligent way! He deserved all the donations and I hope he gets the compensation he deserves.

    Send a message Nicky! A ground swell of support is behind you!

  14. upnorth 14

    I understand process and process was wrong and so I say well done but there is some issues for me.

    Hager said he lawyered up when he wrote the book. Fair enough hot potato stuff but part of the analysis would be that he would be asked about his source. This could come from various ways – police complaint number one.

    Why does Hager ask for donations on legal fees when he made money from the book?
    If he is awarded costs then will Hager refund all the donated money?
    At what stage does he provide the real details behind the book – at this stage the book is sensational in nature, interesting read for people interested in politics but the reality is and still is – national stormed to victory so the public gave their final determination on the book – no one really cared.

    Jobs, education, health, environment are what people are thinking about – cut and paste emails is about as exciting as watching my dog play with a piece of paper.

    I hope all that donated get their money back if Hager is awarded costs plus some additional compensation – remember he knew what he was doing from day one.

    I had an interesting chat with a person about the fact – how do you check on people when the people who break news are doing their own private investigations? I hope you get my drift on this. I am a decent person and whatever you think of WO it was still stolen property – I think black ops got confused with what it all really is – politics.

    This I believe is the whole confusion on the matter – politics be it left or right is all about being ahead of the opposition.

    I personally still in Father Christmas so for 95% of the general public I will be kicking back over the festive season and Hager will be the very last item on my list of things I will be caring about.

    the people voted a re-sounding no to the book – it is just a fact plain and simple – time to accept this point and move on

    • fender 14.1

      Yeah I think I get your “drift”, you’re decent enough to accuse Hager of hacking.

      “…. politics be it left or right is all about being ahead of the opposition.”

      Yeah but not at any cost like the indecent subjects in the book. Read it.

      “I personally still in Father Christmas so for 95% of the general public I will be kicking back over the festive season and Hager will be the very last item on my list of things I will be caring about.”

      I think you’re trying to say you still believe in Father Christmas, so do 95%, and that you’re going to ask him to stop you from commenting on blogs related to Hager. Or do you mean the Dirty Politics book is the last item on your list for Santa?

      The people did vote, it was a General Election, not a referendum on a book.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 14.2

      Upnorth, move on all you like: we’ll be more than happy to drag you back to have your face rubbed in it some more. After all, it’s no less than you deserve.

    • Brigid 14.3

      “I hope all that donated get their money back if Hager is awarded costs plus some additional compensation ” Oh please! Of course you don’t.
      And I actually don’t need, nor want you to be concerned about what happens to money I’ve donated.

      I hope that you definitely do move on. Over a cliff perhaps?

      • upnorth 14.3.1

        Brigid I am sorry you have to reply in such a way – re read I congratulated Hager on winning against incorrect process. He is a journalist so should be almost part of his time of story telling.

        My question is will he refund money donated as a good person would do.

        If you accept a refund is your decision.

        I even suggested in my post he might be awarded additional compensation – reflect please and I hope you realise saying jumping off a cliff is not mature thing to say.

        Luckily I have good marbles in my head and will take the comment as immature rather than discussing a point or opinion.

        • reason 14.3.1.1

          upnorth must realize that the Police stopped Nicky Hagers present work projects ………..depriving him of income.

          The police also stole his daughters laptop computer as part of the illegal raid and it was vital for her upcoming school exams ………… apart from the stress and additional difficulties the police actions caused his daughter Nicky no doubt had to buy her a new computer …..

          A good person/poster would recognize that the legal fees are only part of the many financial costs and disruption that this politically motivated police harassment caused Nicky Hager…….

          A good person would support the police paying these full costs ……

          Otherwise Nicky is still well out of pocket.

          I also tend to think the police and the Nats are quite happy to punish the messenger ( Nicky ) as another example of what happens to journalists who expose or report the truth about them ……..

          Catching RawShark could be like having a tiger by the tail for the Nats ……

          The state sponsored sequel of Dirty politics like the initial book would be ugly stuff ……about JK, slater and the dirty politics crew.

  15. Redelusion 15

    All fish and chip paper now, people moved on a long time ago Whole saga just bores middle NZ now, the jk deranged will cling to it however, every one else it’s a non event or just a continuation of the loony lefty circus, re Mana internet party campaign, sue bradford and her rent a mob posse, attacking JK for every pc slight know to man, mock outrage etc etc long may it continue

    • Lloyd 15.1

      If you keep telling people with “middle of the road” (i.e. swayable by the MSM) that John Key is a lying bastard and you cannot trust him, the message may eventually get through. Make a point of telling a couple of people a day. (Not the same ones!)

  16. Whateva Next 16

    Yes dear

  17. Bruce 17

    Good on you NIcky. Let’s bring those ships home with everyone on board safe and well fed.

  18. Mike Bond 18

    That the left can not see that the majority of Kiwis are not concerned about Dirty Politics and Nicky Hagger is beyond me. If the police now appeal this decision and a higher court overturns the decision, will they then say that National have influenced the judge? Most probably. I see Trotter has named his politician of the year as Bill English and not any one from the opposition as we would expect from him. His reason for this is that he thinks that Labour have done nothing to show their supporters that they will be doing anything for them. Everything from Labour has been attack National and John Key in everything they say or do. The negativity that turned voters off from them in the election just continues. Why would anyone vote for Labour? What are they offering the man in the street? I really hope the new year brings a new approach from Labour and an opposition that has something to offer except negativity. They need to look at the polls. A year of some glorious stuff ups from National and they have not lost any support. Why is what Labour needs to be asking.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 18.1

      A simple glance at Labour’s blog is all that’s needed to show that Mike Bond is lying. Press-release after press-release and hardly a word about Key.

      Is Mike lying deliberately or as a result of sloppiness and a total lack of personal responsibility?

      Who cares, the man’s a liar.

      • Mike Bond 18.1.1

        So glad that in your world Labour are racing up in the polls and all is well. In the real world, they are making no traction and are known for their negativity only.

        • One Anonymous Bloke 18.1.1.1

          So now you’re lying about my opinion, eh. Not to mention conflating your own with “the real world” – another lie.

          In fact, you don’t even represent the thirty percent of eligible voters that support National.

    • Tautuhi 18.2

      This is starting to make Watergate look like a Children’s Tea Party?

      However the NZ Judiciary will be instructed by the Government to turn the decision over, just like the David Bain Enquiry.

    • Tautuhi 18.3

      Unfortunately under JK we are witnessing the breakdown of democracy here in NZ?

  19. Kev 19

    But is Hager a journalist? At least one journalist doesn’t think so:

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/dominion-post/comment/columnists/70382467/Karl-du-Fresne-Can-Nicky-Hager-really-be-called-a-journalist

    Granted, the crown regarded Hager as a journalist so it’s understandable that the judge would regard Hager as a journalist too. But that doesn’t mean the the police can’t appeal on the grounds that Hager isn’t a journalist and that the crown made a mistake by regarding Hager as one.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 19.1

      You sound desperate. Is du Fresne’s opinion relevant on your planet?

      Please set up a fund to waste money on your fantasies. Call it “The Crying Wingnut Charitable Appeal Against Reality”, and watch as you flush dollars down the toilet.

      Go on fatmouth, let’s see you back your dribble with some action.

      • Kev 19.1.1

        It will become relevant on your planet if the cops decide to appeal on the grounds that Hager isn’t a journalist.

        Which by the way I don’t believe they will.

        • One Anonymous Bloke 19.1.1.1

          You’d better put your money where your fat mouth is then, like we did for Nicky.

          We won. You, not so much. Loser.

  20. Tautuhi 20

    NZ Police haven’t moved on from the raids on Polynesian overstayers in the Muldoon era, however I guess these guys are the reminants of that era. The goon squads, red squads, bully boys whatever you want to call them.

    Still a severe lack of professionalism in the NZ Police.

  21. reason 21

    Is Karle-du-fresene a journalist?????……… yes but a very shit house one with bigoted prejudiced opinions backed up with angry stupidity………… I guess we could call him old school right wing.

    Karle-du-frense once called for a police officer to be demoted or sacked and also labeled him a wowser…….du-frsenes motivation was because this officer had spoken spoke out against the effects of Alcohol and the Alcohol industry on frontline police and their work https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tHI-4NWB8n0

    It’s quite a basic fact that the drug Alcohol causes its own crime wave ……..

    Approximately half (49.5%) of all homicides recorded between 1999-2008 involved either a suspect or victim being under the influence of alcohol at the time of the incident.

    A high percentage of Serious violent and sexual crimes often involve alcohol abuse and intoxication
    “Alcohol was a major factor in the bashing, which was apparent in a lot of physical and sexual abuse cases the unit dealt with”, Mrs Schaare said– Detective Sergeant Kylie Schaare child protection unit.

    Police staffing and roster numbers for shifts/days are in part based on times of maximum alcohol consumption …………. How may frontline police staff have New Years eve off ???.

    Of course Alcohol abuse has a huge effect on crime ……….. But police officers speaking out about this have taken a step too far and they should be out of the job according to du-fresne ………

    Du-fresene has many such examples of be a total wanky idiot ….I guess he’s just writing to his audience…..Kev.

    The Neanderthal journalist Karle-du-fresene is a right wing hack who probably feels jealous and inadequate compared to Hager

  22. Ian 22

    You are superior- this is ‘truth’. Probably best you relax.

    You must use ‘all evidence’ to capture ‘a sitting duck’, relax, calm yourself down.

    Cool, calm and collected, that’s my man.

    Also of note: One man is restricted, one man is not.

    [lprent: Exactly how is this related to the topic of the post? I very nearly threw you into the autobot spam queue because that is what this comment read like. ]

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