Seeking a wormald to the truth

Written By: - Date published: 1:47 pm, April 15th, 2013 - 32 comments
Categories: accountability, copyright, International, internet, john key, law, slippery, Spying, telecommunications, us politics - Tags: , ,

John Key defends the rising questions about his roles in the Dotcom business, and his relationship to the GSCB and its current director by saying that:

My reputation matters to me because I am honest and I am upfront

As highlighted by Anthony Robins in his post today on the speculations on National’s leadership.

In relation to the GCSB, Deputy Labour caucus leader, Grant Robertson claims there are still more questions to be answered over Key shoulder tapping a friend for the job as GCSB boss.  Furthermore, Robertson is concerned about the role of the GCSB in spying on New Zealand citizens and residents.

Aside from the confusion of the ban on spying on New Zealanders, the difference between the GCSB and the country’s Security Intelligence Service is its connection with the Five Eyes network.

Labour deputy leader Grant Robertson raised the difference in Parliament, saying: “The bureau is not allowed to spy on New Zealanders because it works with foreign governments.” Papers released from the High Court action against the bureau by Mr Dotcom showed his details and those of fellow New Zealander and co-accused Bram van der Kolk were sent to the Five Eyes network.

This issue is one part of the Dotcom saga. The lawyers for the high profile Coatesvill resident have opened proceedings in court in another round in this saga.  Recently Dotcom has titillated many by his hints that there will be some major revelations arising from this week’s court proceedings.

Without elaborating, Dotcom claimed it would be shown that the prime minister of New Zealand, John Key, misled the country’s parliament in relation to his case, which has captivated the online world.

Dotcom reiterated his belief that his case — which shut down the Megaupload file storage site, causing customers worldwide to lose data they had uploaded — was politically motivated.

“Get the popcorn ready,” said Dotcom, 39, appearing like a cheerful ghostly face against a pitch-black background on a giant projection screen, “because you won’t believe what these guys did.”

So it will be interesting to see whether this will be another major fireworks display form the Dotcom camp, or if it will turn out to be a fizzer.

This morning Dotcom’s lawyer focused on Detective Inspetor Grant Wormald,

 the policeman who led the raid on the exclusive mansion in rural Auckland.

Curiously, in this latest round, Dotcom’s legal team are seeking to separate the role of the GCSB from that of the police operations:

The Government Communications Security Bureau (GCSB) was joined to the case, but Davison told the court this morning that aspect of the case would be severed and fresh civil proceedings would now be issued against the bureau.

Davison told the court that the use of the police Special Tactics Group (STG) was central to the claim of unreasonable search. He wanted to cross-examine Wormald over that.

He said he needed to cross-examine further to determine whether there had been a deliberate strategy to withhold knowledge by the STG.

Davison said he was not seeking a “speculative examination” of Wormald.

“It is all about whether the witness is being frank with the court.”

He told the judge that Wormald has asked the court to accept his word but if, in cross-examination, it emerged he was withholding information, then they could would take a jaundiced view of him.

Are they targeting the role of the police because it is easier for them to obtain evidence on its operations than that of the NZ branch of the Five Eyes spy network?

And does this mean it is no longer about the GCSB?

Or, are Dotcom’s lawyers making the separation in order to open up a wormhole to the GCSB via the NZ police?

Wherever it goes, it’s certainly about seeking truth where there has been obfuscation on the part of the NZ police, the GCSB and John Key.

[Update Key’s announced changes to the GCSB outrageous & undemocratic]

My goodness, it’s even worse than I would have thought . According to an article on Stuff:

The changes would allow the GCSB to provide information assurance and cyber security advice and help to both public and private sector organisations, and allow it to assist other entities such as the New Zealand Security Intelligence Service, New Zealand Defence Force and Police while retaining its foreign intelligence gathering powers “broadly as is”.

My bold.

kiwis should be protesting in the streets, media, halls of power and cyberways in vast numbers over this.

32 comments on “Seeking a wormald to the truth”

  1. Shane Gallagher 1

    I don’t think Dotcom would be bluffing… he has out-played the govt. repeatedly and is pretty astute. I have bought my popcorn.

  2. DH 2

    It has to be remembered that Dotcom’s focus is on preventing his extradition. We’d likely all agree that if he was tried in a US court there’s a high chance of him being convicted and he’d face a very heavy prison sentence. Preventing that is his priority and his legal team will be working towards that. It’s the relevant laws that matter there, not playing politics.

    I don’t know what his legal defence is, can an extradition order even be annulled by illegal search & seizure?

    • ianmac 2.1

      I understood that it was the Court that had separated the two issues. Police as one and GCSB as the other.
      DH may be right that Mr Dotcom has his top priority in avoiding prosecution and extradition and therefore the political angle will just be collateral damage. But rest assured that the Crown will pursue rigorously the doubt that the actions were illegal. If they succeed then that angle will disappear at least politically.

      (By the way Karol, I like the way you connect the ideas together.)

      • ianmac 2.1.1

        Just read about the specific actions/intentions for this week but can’t find out from whence it came:
        “Following this ruling, Mr Dotcom’s lawyers commenced two claims: one to seek compensation for damages and the other to get back some of the evidence that was seized.
        It was agreed in court on Monday to separate out the two claims.

        Paul Davison, QC, will this week focus on what he argues was the unreasonable force of the raid and to retrieve some of his client’s computer hard-drives.”

  3. vto 3

    Given that the Police last week described an acknowledged crooked copper who planted evidence on Arthur Allan Thomas and perjured hmself in court as upright and decent what sort of response do you think could be expected from wormald in court?

    • ianmac 3.1

      It may be that “they” believe that the integrity of the Law and Order is too important to be sullied so…

  4. Tim 4

    “My reputation matters to me because I am honest and I and upfront”

    I say that because
    a) I’ve become so accustomed to a life of bullshit and spin that I no longer understand what honesty and integrity is…
    b) I am so overambitious that I will say anything to win an argument and self-promote
    c) Helen did it so therefore its OK for me too
    d) I lost my conscience during the last brain-fade …. or umm, was it the one before that, or the one before that
    e) etc.

  5. TightyRighty 5

    I just love how labour needs a McDonalds loving Capitalist who hardly needs to work as his money earns him money, to land any hits on this government.

    The uselessness of this opposition would be hilarious if it weren’t for the fact an effective opposition is necessary for democracy to work properly. Good thing national are so ethical that they haven’t indulged in undemocratic behaviour like electoral financing reform.

    • Colonial Viper 5.1

      Shit man how much you selling that stuff your smokin?

    • felix 5.2

      “I just love how labour needs a McDonalds loving Capitalist who hardly needs to work as his money earns him money, to land any hits on this government.”

      heh, yeah there’s a bit of irony in that. He was even donating to John Banks ffs.

      Lefties ought to be aware he may not be a “friend” so much as “the enemy of my enemy”.

      • TightyRighty 5.2.1

        Yea, I wouldn’t keep banging on about how we need to stop the spread of fast food outlets. You’ll seriously weaken your only asset.

  6. TruthSeeker 6

    What a fizzer lol. Dotcom has been talking up this particular hearing for months, suggesting it had the potential to bring down the government, and that we’re witnessing our very own Watergate etc. Now it turns out that the hearing is just about police brutality. That’s an important issue but it’s hardly the political dynamite he promised. I’m sure he has got something on Key, but it’ll be ages before we find out what that is, and I reckon he’s saving it up as an absolute last resort. He’s quietly hoping that the case is dropped.

  7. ianmac 7

    Just Read the ODT Editorial. Isn’t it great to read a lead from significant MSM paper.
    The article outlines the need for a full enquiry and does not mince words on the actions of the PM

    “…..And there cannot be many who do not find irony in Prime Minister John Key’s comments that ”it is absolutely critical the GCSB has a clear legal framework to operate within” and the law changes would ”remedy the inadequacies of the GCSB Act”, given any inadequacies or failures surely came from him, bureau directors or bureau staff either misunderstanding or ignoring the current legal framework. ….
    Since the Kim Dotcom debacle, there have been ongoing calls by the Opposition for a parliamentary inquiry into the GCSB and the new revelations have spurred further calls for a thorough independent review of both spy agencies. Certainly, there seems much to answer for, which is why changing the law before a proper investigation of process has been carried out would be a gross abuse of power – and could have a gross impact on the average New Zealander. “

  8. gobsmacked 8

    At his post-Cabinet presser (see all media outlets, soon), Key has announced –

    1) He will make illegal GCSB spying on NZers suddenly legal after all …

    We intend to make it clear the GCSB can undertake activities on behalf of other named agencies where those agencies can lawfully undertake those activities.

    This includes the other agencies’ lawful investigations of New Zealanders

    2) Some superficial changes to oversight – window dressing

    3) An investigation into the Kitteridge leak

    Clearly an inadequate response, and the opposition should shout this from the rooftops.

    • karol 8.1

      My goodness, it’s even worse than I would have thought:

      The changes would allow the GCSB to provide information assurance and cyber security advice and help to both public and private sector organisations, and allow it to assist other entities such as the New Zealand Security Intelligence Service, New Zealand Defence Force and Police while retaining its foreign intelligence gathering powers “broadly as is”.

      My bold.

      kiwis should be protesting in the streets, media, halls of power and cyberways in vast numbers over this.

      • McFlock 8.1.1

        So the GCSB will bug your traffic at the request of sony on the off-chance that your dropbox music is pirated and not a format shift, so they can make an indefensible complaint to shut off your internet and get “damages”.

      • Arfamo 8.1.2

        New thread for this one would be good.

      • emergency mike 8.1.3

        Wow. The clear prohibition on spying on NZers was put there for a good reason. That being that the GCSB’s foreign intelligence spy tech at Waihopi is a essentially the NZ branch of the American/UK Echelon global electronic communication monitoring spy network. It’s not an NZ asset. Thus John Key is allowing the police and SIS and “private sector organisations” (wtf?) to use spy tech run in cooperation with foreign entities on NZ citizens. Which raises all sorts of thorny oversight issues. Not that we were short of them.

        • Ugly Truth

          Lets not forget that the state’s primary role is to protect its citizens, not sell them out to international interests.

          • Anne

            Correction:…the state’s primary role now is to sell them out to international interests, not to protect its citizens.

            yeah… I’m up in the middle of the night with storm force winds and hvy rain trying to re-batten down the aviary. Fingers crossed it will last til morning.

      • Huginn 8.1.4

        Fucking hell
        How . . . revealing. Wonder how long he’s been thinking that this is ok?

  9. ianmac 9

    Appalling! It smacks of self-serving avoidance.
    It could have a flow on effect to the Dotcom claims of illegality.
    It also denies and bypasses the strongly worded intent in the 2003 Act to NOT spy on NZers.
    The 2003 Act took a great deal of discussion/debate/consultation and agreement from nearly every MP and interested parties. This one is a quick bypass to paper over the cracks. Awful!

    • If you put it into the context of copyright protection versus democracy it becomes far worse.

      The recording industry, via affiliates, distributed file sharing software which targeted their own copyrighted works and then pushed for state sponsored prosecution of copyright violators.

      The public backlash against SOPA and other industry supported legislation stopped it from gaining ground in the US, but the industry continues to push for prosecution of alleged violations of its “moral rights”.

      The recording industry ignores fair use of copyrighted material. Fair use relates to the realm of equity, which is based on matters of conscience. Corporations, like governments, do not have a conscience. If fair use was recognized by the state then the state’s behaviour would be radically different. as it would have to recognize the right to fair use of all public property. For example, in most cases driver licences would be rendered obsolete.

  10. prism 10

    Dohnkey has stated apparently that the NACTS are just putting into effect the intentions of Labour’s original policy of 2003. So it’s all Labour’s fault AGAIN. Thank goodness we have these wonderful RWNJs to guide us to a safe haven in these stormy seas of brouhaha.

  11. ghostrider888 11

    It is all the fault of Lars Ulrich not being able to front the band.
    “take the load off Annie, take a load for free, Take a load of Annie, And (and) you put the load on NZee”

  12. TightyRighty 12

    How are those court proceedings going?

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