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Banks gets off…

Written By: - Date published: 1:08 pm, July 26th, 2012 - 44 comments
Categories: corruption, john banks - Tags:

Police were unable to establish that Mr Banks had the necessary knowledge that the donation had been recorded as anonymous in the return before he signed and submitted it.

As No Right Turn puts it:

So basically they’re letting him off because he didn’t read the thing he signed and was legally responsible for. Its one law for finance company directors, and another for corrupt politicians.


44 comments on “Banks gets off…”

  1. Socialist Paddy 1

    So the guy does not read what he signs even though he is told that he is making a declaration?
    And he is a Minister of the Crown?
    This country really is being run by a bunch of buffoons.

    • Hennie van der Merwe 1.1

      I am beginning to feel at home here in NZ – not much different from South Africa where I originally came from.

      How is it possible that one cannot be held responsible for signing a declaration? Almost all the documents I have ever signed were prepared by someone else, yet that does not absolve me from adhering to the contents.
      What makes it even worse IMO is the fact that he knew about these two donations and my submission is that a reasonable man would at least have done a “spot check” on the “volunteer’s” work by looking to see if these two rather large donations were included?
      I am still stunned and at a loss for words….

      • starlight 1.1.1

        Banks also made a phone call to thank dot-com and the bodyguard received the call
        from banks himself ,so he knew where the donations came from alright.

  2. Dv 2

    When he was a Hullich company director and signed the dodgy Hullich prospectus as well.

    • Tom Gould 2.1

      He couldn’t recall that either. But it looks like there is now a new test to beat a police wrap. Sure I signed it. Sure I was responsible for its accuracy. But I am not accountable for its accuracy. Because you cannot prove that I knew it was inaccurate. So you have to let me go free. Amazing, but true, it would seem.

      • Treetop 2.1.1

        “Because you cannot prove that I knew it was inaccurate”

        Try doing this with a Work and Income or an IRD declaration and see how far you get.

      • David H 2.1.2

        Hmmm Now I wonder if that would work if I went and wrote a dodgy cheque or 2 ? Sorry Occifer I wasn’t reading what I was writing/signing.

    • ghostwhowalksnz 2.2

      The business is now called Christopher And Banks, because the Huljich name is tainted.
      Chistopher is one of Huljichs middle names

    • mike e 2.3

      Maybe someone should go to the police complaints authority.
      The police and the SFO are gutless .
      Doug Graham gets done up good and proper’
      Banks and Brash will probably get a knightHOOD.
      This sounds like cronyism alah Goldman Sachs Merrill Lynch type where is the party of personal responsibility no where to be found.

  3. To beneficiaries everywhere.  When you are required to go to WINZ to provide a declaration can I suggest you do the following:
    1.  Get someone else to complete the form.
    2.  Before signing ask them “is it accurate?”.
    3.  If they say “yes” go for it.
    Under NO CIRCUMSTANCES should you read the declaration though.

    • Chris 3.1

      I don’t get your point do you think if they do this the police will charge them with a crime?’

      Edit – thought about it more – they would – carry on then

      • mike e 3.1.1

        Chris one rule for the rich no rules.
        the full force of the law for the rest.

  4. Tracey 4

    He’s not being charged because there is not enough, or sufficient evidence that he knew the particular donation was not made anonymously… is that the gist? If so, that’s like many charges that can’t stick because they involve getting inside someone’s head and trying to prove what they “knew” or did not “know”. I’m not sure how anyone could know for someone else if someone knew something or not? How can another person know Bank’s mind? I thought Banks had to know it was or was not anonymous, so how could someone else help him with that?

    In the spectre of public opinion I think people made up their minds on this one ages ago. Is there a correlation between Bank’s complete silence for weeks and this investigation? Has he stopped work entirely while this went on and we kept paying him??

    • Treetop 4.1

      I’m still making up my mind if Banks has early onset Alzheimers as he does not recall a helicopter trip to the mansion. Time will out Banks on the anon donations as he will either screw up again or he will not put a foot wrong. Banks will be history at the next election and he will then be punished, (karma).

    • Crashcart 4.2

      Acrtuly no Tracey. The gist of the police stament is that they can prove he knew he received the donations and who they were from. However because he didn’t complete the decleration they can’t prove that he knew what was in it. Even though he signed to say it was accurate.

  5. ghostwhowalksnz 5

    Once there was a big fuss over someone who signed a painting.

    There was a private prosecution and everything as it was a ‘big deal’

  6. Dr Terry 6

    Is anyone really surprised? This is all part of “the direction this country is going in”with which an incredible number of people are content (as with dormancy they watch fellow citizens leaving en masse for Aussie).

  7. Tracey 7

    Dr Terry, people are not leaving for Aussie “en masse” but I take your general point.

    Ghost, oh yes but that was then, this is now

    • fender 7.1

      True, en masse suggests all 52 000 (a new 12 month record) left together all at once. But due to logistics they had to stagger their departure. Be interesting to see if Key can scare another record number to depart this year.

      Speculation regarding Banks having alzheimer’s must make him quite proud of his acting skills. But we know he’s just a fucking LIER.

      • Colonial Viper 7.1.1

        Calm down everyone. Australian economy is going down the toilet. (Has been for 18 months but we’ve only just noticed it here).

        Next 12 months outflow to Australia is going to be a mild drop on this year as a result, at a guess.

        • xtasy

          Who cares? Kiwis are called the “Mexicans of the South Pacific – with cell phones), so the many heading there are used to low wages, they will offer their work below Aussie payrates, if need be, and thus be the ones getting many of the remaining jobs.

          I have not detected a mass return from Aus somehow.

  8. oscar 8

    Someone doesn’t want to call an early election. Some staff at Bullshit castle are scratching their heads as the last we knew last week was that charges were going to be laid. Who’s gone and had a chat in the meantime I wonder?

  9. BillODrees 9

    Is there scope under Civil Law for Dotcom to request his money back as it was not reported correctly? 


  10. Kotahi Tāne Huna 10

    Am I right in thinking that because this has not been before a court, it sets no precedent, and therefore the John “for sale” Banks defence will not be available to others?

    • McFlock 10.1

      Technically I’m not even sure that the “Even though I made no effort to check anything myself, I asked someone else if the declaration I was going to make was vaguely true so it’s not my fault” defence should have stood up. 
      Where does one go if one feels that the police decision not to prosecute was bunk? IPCA? Or go to the court for a ruling to see if the decision was valid? Or the Ombudsman? 

      • Kotahi Tāne Huna 10.1.1

        Another minor issue: now Banks has confessed to signing false declarations he hasn’t read on not one but two separate occasions, under what circumstances should he retain his ministerial warrant?

        • Colonial Viper

          He should retain them as long as National needs his vote. Hmmmm not the answer you were looking for?

      • tracey 10.1.2

        It does seem odd that it is a defence to say ” yes i signed it as being true and correct to the best of my knowledge but I havent read it so dont personally know.” it rather makes a mockery of declarations.

        • felix

          Nah it makes a mockery of Banks and it makes a mockery of the NZ Police that they accepted such bullshit.

  11. mike e 11

    Even though he had $600,000 + in donations to try and take Aucklands mayoralty he lost
    Act name is mud.
    Poetic justice!

  12. xtasy 12

    Maybe more NZers now will wake up to what this country has come to!?

    I know for a fact, that the NZ Police is generally very “cosy” with the National Party and the government of the day. I went to a public meeting where Paula Bennett spoke some time back. I could not believe, how friendly, warm and cosy the present police officers were with Bennett and two other present National MPs. It seems they are even on a level of “friendship”.

    Particularly the Police Commissioner and head within the Police also seem to be very cosy with the government of present days.

    The decision by the Police to not lay charges against John Banks does therefore not suprise me one bit. What he so conveniently could not remember, and apparently a staffer or volunteer working for him did when recording the donations from Sky City, Dotcom and another party, but not declaring it under the Local Government legislation, that seems to be very odd indeed. Surely those donations were not ordinary ones, did not all happen at the same time, and the amounts in question must have raised eyebrows and generated attention.

    But the Police has found a convenient way out of this, so as not to upset former National MP and now ACT MP Banksie and his mates Key and others.

    This is the way the law is handled in NZ. Banksie is like a white collar crim, let off lightly here, while any poor South Aucklander gets pulled before a court, for perhaps merely saying something interpreted as “insulting” to a cop.

    One law for the rich and the powerful, another for the rest.

    Thank you, NZ Police, you have displayed your double standards and that you are therefore somwhat “criminal” yourselves. I remember a case where an arrested person was punched while in hand-cuffs at the police station (after attending a protest). It went to the Independent Police Conduct Authority. It all led to nothing, as usually that Authority handles complaints by giving them back to a section of the NZ Police to deal with. Naturally the officers that committed the crimes were getting off it, acting “professionally”, as they lied, denied it all, and as the arrested person had no witness. Video footage also no longer existed, it was claimed.

    NZ is a rotten and corrupt country in many ways, that is the truth, for sure!

    • muzza 12.1

      What you are referring to by the “frienliness”, is that they are all members of a club, the same club, and you were a member, you would know about it too.

      This club looks after itself, and its fellow members. Not sure that it can be any more obvious than how Banks has been let off the hook twice in recent times alone.

      NZ was gone a long time back, its so fr gone now, that we have to see this sort of thing on a regular basis now, and people just shrug, if they pay attention at all….

      Notice how many votes Banks got in Epsom, thats the club right there!

    • Colonial Viper 12.2

      One law for the rich and the powerful, another for the rest.

      Yep. But we shouldn’t kid ourselves that this is a recent occurrence. Just think back to Massey’s Cossacks and also the waterfront strike.

  13. xtasy 13

    Just a reminder: there were huge numbers of police guarding the National Party Conference, and they blocked Federal Street and stared the protesters in the face hatefully, as I clearly saw.

    Ask yourselves why there was such a strong presence, and who may have caused this to be!

    • tracey 13.1

      i think your view is very jaundiced. The former govt also seemed to have a very friendly relationship with the police

      • xtasy 13.1.1

        Yes they did, especially under Phil Goff as Minister of Justice and George Hawkins and Annette King as Ministers of Police, I must agree.

        Labour did after winning the 1999 election and especially in the years after 2003 try to please the so often quoted “middle ground” and “centre” of the NZ populace, and hence was in many policies not all that much different from National. I remember the hard line justice approach and so forth.

        NZ had as a general population already become quite a “hardened” society after National ruled for many years in the 1990s, so Labour felt a need to please the swing voters in the centre and fell for a lot of the media hype about crime, and even alleged benefit abuse, so Labour also started tightening criteria to benefits in later years.

        No wonder the sudden uturn to more traditional Labour positions during the last election did not convince sufficient voters.

        But I must in all honesty say, that I never saw the cosyness between Labour in government and the Police taking quite the forms of what we are seeing now.

  14. Bomber has a good comment:

    “The reality is that Zombie Banks is simply too well connected to get tripped up by something as peripheral as donation laws. How he has managed to keep his name out of Police surveillance footage rumors is in itself an indication that if you want to kill the political undead, one requires a cross, a stake and holy water.”

  15. bad12 15

    Not sure if electoral law allows for such cases to be privately prosecuted, as i said months ago, i’ve got a spare 100 to put toward a private prosecution…

  16. What an absolute crock ! the evidence was there,in the media,by witnesses,we all
    knew his corruption in this matter, the only thing that can be summised in this
    is that key has made a deal with the constablary to come to the decision it has,
    key knows full well loosing scurilous banks could make his dictatorship politics
    Also of note on the national party website the ‘thumbs up sign’ is on the welfare
    changes logo,key’s politics protect his ilk,kick the guts out of the public.

  17. Jenny 17

    The police know there duty. Now if you only Banks had been protesting against deep sea oil drilling, then the police would charge him even if there was no hope of a conviction.

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