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The name’s on the cheque!

Written By: - Date published: 11:04 pm, April 30th, 2012 - 55 comments
Categories: accountability, act, corruption, election funding, leadership, national, privatisation, you couldn't make this shit up - Tags:

Campbell Live showed us pictures of the cheques by which Kim Dotcom’s company Megastuff made donations to Team Banksie 2010. How can John Banks argue that the two donations of $25,000 from Kim Dotcom’s company Megastuff Limited are anonymous when the company name is on the cheque? You could look up their address on the website.

In the days when anonymous donations were allowed to political parties, they all came via intermediaries, in the Labour Party’s case from lawyers trust accounts. A cheque with a name on it is not anonymous; a limited company is not an unknown entity. It will have a registered office and a list of directors.

Banks’ response to Campbell’s interviewer was that he wouldn’t make a thank you call to an anonymous donator. But he could have got Megastuff Limited’s number from the White Pages.

Game over, John and John.


55 comments on “The name’s on the cheque! ”

  1. James 1

    Wasn’t it an employee of Dotcom that deposited the checks?

    • Colonial Viper 1.1

      Wasn’t it an employee of Dotcom that deposited the checks?

      Yeah it’s quite usual for employees to follow the instructions of their boss.

      • fender 1.1.1

        Yes a stupid question like that deserves to have 111 after your name james. No sorry thats not fair, theres no one as stupid as james 111.

        • James

          I’m not entirely sure how cheques work. If Banks never saw the cheques, what does it matter if the name is on it?

          • fender

            The name would appear on bank statement: Megastuff Limited.

            • James

              Ah, I see.

            • Jester

              Names only appear on direct credits and for online transactions I believe.

              • fender

                Oh well the phone records will be interesting, but then I guess Banks will say he was just thanking Dotcom for the new years fireworks, in June. Banksie got more fireworks than he bargained for thats for sure.

                • Jester

                  Although it’s funny watching the Mallard, Shearer and Co play gotcha politics its of no consequence if Banks goes. Although judging by the speed of enquiries he may just outlast Shearer.

                  Anyway if Banks is dirty then he must go. So instead of fluffing around with John Campbells lightweight repeating, Labour need to ask probing questions like who supplied the ACT bank details to Dotcom and crosscheck the timing of the fireworks display in Auckland, the party at Dotcoms mansion and the timing of the deposits. You may be surprised with what pops up.

                  [lprent: ACT had nothing to do with the donation. It was long before Banks had his miraculous conversion to the way of ACT. It shows. ACT are way way better at hiding dirty donations]

                  • McFlock

                    I guess that those are some of the questions the police will eventually get around to asking.
                    Unless Dotcom decides to ask the other people who he claims were present to corroborate the story to John Campbell (and let’s face it, the paperwork so far has been in line with his story).
                    I wonder if the tech millionaire records his phone calls? That would be the coup de grace.

                    • felix

                      “and let’s face it, the paperwork so far has been in line with [Dotcom’s] story”

                      I may be wrong, but I don’t think Banks has actually denied anything Dotcom has said.

                      Has he?

                    • Pascal's bookie

                      Yeah, he’s denied the phone call thanking him for a donation, saying he only ever thanked him for NY Eve fireworks, possibly in June.

                    • felix

                      That’s when I usually do my post-xmas catch ups too.

                  • Jester

                    Yeah meant to reference banks not act. Apologies.

              • lprent

                Depends what is put on the payment slip. They put references in if you put them down. It is a pain doing reconciliations without them on the statements.

                But the cheque number is in the transaction along with who it is from as part of the reconciliation. That’s why they use magnetic ink, and machine readable printing. Had fun writing code for printing that at one time.

                • freedom

                  “They put references in if you put them down.” this is the bit i love.
                  Either the staffer who deposited the cheques was being grossly unprofessional by not including a reference of the depositor, who has/had a successful billion dollar business, or the staffer was instructed not to include a reference of the depositor.

      • Roy 1.1.2

        Oh damn, Colonial Viper, I snorked my coffee over that. Ouch.

  2. BLiP 2

    Bit disappointing, really. I would’ve expected Mr DotCom to have completed the transaction from his combo wrist-watch / car-key / cell phone. Cheques are just so last century.

    • Colonial Viper 2.1

      You use cheques if you like to keep a paper trail of your business dealings.

  3. Penny Bright 3

    (Not much discussion on this topic on Kiwiblog!
    Maybe those who normally have lots to say think that if they ignore the issue – it will go away? 😉

    Seen this?

    The National ‘B’ Team (Brash – now Banks) ACT hostile takeover has now arguably completely ‘trainwrecked’ the ACT brand.

    ACT now stands for

    A ssociated with
    C rooks and
    T hieves ?

    There is a very big, murky, smelly, swirling, dirty whirlpool that is going to engulf ‘dodgy John Banks’ and sweep him out of Parliament and possibly into prison, if the electoral fraud allegations are eventually proven, following the official Police investigation which Detective Inspector Mark Benefield confirmed started yesterday Monday 30 April 2012.

    (Myself and 2007 Auckland Mayoral candidate Lisa Prager made complaints to Police regarding the alleged $15,000 Sky City donation to John Banks, and the alleged $50,000 donated to John Banks from Kim Dotcom.)

    The longer ‘shonky John Key’ continues to stand by ‘dodgy John Banks’ – the worse it will be both of them.

    I’m looking forward to the Police finally taking some meaningful action against, whom in my opinion, is the yet-to-be charged /convicted ‘white collar’ criminal currently holding the balance of power in NZ – ‘perceived’ to be the least corrupt country in the world – the current Minister of Regulatory Reform and current Leader of the ACT Party, ACT MP for Epsom – John Banks.

    How long is the ‘perceived’ political protection of John Banks by Prime Minister John Key going to continue?

    Is THAT why John Banks (and Don Brash) were never charged as former fellow Directors of Huljich Wealth Management (NZ) Ltd, for signing Huljich Kiwisaver Registered Prospectuses dated 22 August 2008 and 18 September 2009 – because of political protection of John Banks by Prime Minister John Key?

    Because THAT’S how it looks to me.

    Why is Prime Minister John Key continuing to defend the indefensible?

    I predict a big, fat dose of ‘karma payback’ – that John Banks will end up getting the same treatment as Kim Dotcom……

    ie: One minute – you’re the rooster.
    Nek minnit – you’re the feather duster………..

    I look forward to the future Epsom by-election, where I predict a large national and international spotlight will focus on how little genuine transparency exists in New Zealand, and how desperately we need an ACTION PLAN against ‘white collar’ crime, corruption and ‘corporate welfare’.

    Want to check out this (draft) ACTION PLAN against ‘white collar’ crime, corruption and ‘corporate welfare’?


    Penny Bright
    ‘Anti-corruption campaigner’

  4. Having looked at the Geddis and Edgeler posts on this, I doubt anyone would be able to demonstrate Banks acted illegally – the law is so loose any defence lawyer could run rings around it even with Dotcom’s names on the cheques and his company’s name on the bank statements, so it’s unlikely to be worth a prosecutor’s effort. If we get tighter local body electoral laws out of this it’ll be worth it even if Banks doesn’t get the boot.

    • Kotahi Tane Huna 4.1

      The legal aspects are one thing – perhaps there is a loophole Banks can crawl through (although given his performance to date I think it far more likely that he would get stuck, squealing, half way).

      The political aspects are another thing entirely. It is quite clear that the donation was not anonymous; public opinion will not be swayed by lawyers’ tricks.

    • lprent 4.2

      Yeah, that is what is so nice about it. There is legal and then there is politically suicidal. The exclusive bretheren actions and the mostly bloated claims against Winston Peters come to mind (largely legal, but hugely damaging).

      A long and protracted political suicide is a lot more interesting because it allows time push into most of the dirty wee holes in all of the electoral finance, both local and national. I’d dearly like to improve that area.

      I am sure that the authors here are having fun looking at his current attitudes, and they’re hoping that Banks is daft enough to try to brazen that out.

      • tc 4.2.1

        Agree and some of the other equally distressing activities to banks political future may also swim their way to the surface.

        Hope so, this wealthy old dinosaur crony really deserves a protracted public disembowling taking the act party with him for his inept mayoralty, hulich and prior sessions in the govt trough.

      • Kotahi Tane Huna 4.2.2

        I like Bob Jones’ attitude to political donation:

        There had been payments of $50,000 “here or there” to other parties, Sir Bob said.

        Wealthy people and corporations were “hit up” by all the political parties and also made unsolicited donations, he said.

        “I’ve never been approached by the Greens and Maori Party, I must confess,” Sir Bob said.

        He did not like the thesis of the Maori Party and wouldn’t have given them money but asked if he would give to the Greens he said: “I probably would, but I don’t want to say that”.

        Perhaps this can be seen as an attempt to buy favours off everybody (apart from the MP), but look at it another way: by donating across the political spectrum he is funding the democratic process.

        I can see problems with the idea of outlawing partisan donations altogether in favour of having a central body to receive donations, which are then apportioned to the various parties (by the same formula tv time is allocated?), but I think it should be on the table at least.

    • Jenny 4.3

      Unfortunately for Banks, Geddis opinion didn’t include the damning fact that the money was deposited on Megastuff company cheques.

      I don’t care how rich you are, if two cheques from Megastuff of $25,000 found their way into your bank account, you would notice it.

      If you really needed that money to run a political campaign you would have to be a complete ingrate not to phone back with your thanks.

      • Pete George 4.3.1

        It’s been said several times already – if cheques are deposited by someone else and no reference is entered against them (which in any case can be any text and isn’t an audit trail) then there may be nothing that indentifies the source of the cheques on a bank statement.

        Apart from that, the rest looks very shoddy for Banks. He limped Act back into parliament, but he’s severely hobbled himself with the way he’s dealt with it. His credibility is on a similar level as Act’s.

        • Te Reo Putake

          So what? Banks knew two of the five cheques were from Dotcom. Presumably he knows where the other 3 came from as well, but at this point, those donors aren’t dobbing him in. Yet.

          • felix

            Exactly. There isn’t any doubt that Banks knew exactly where the money came from.

            How do I know this? Because it’s fifty thousand fricking dollars! I don’t care who you are, no-one gives you fifty grand without letting you know about it.

            The only question is whether Banks can lie about it using the correct language. That’s it. That’s all that’s under discussion, his skill at lying.

  5. bad12 5

    Even Lapdogs have teeth,and John(the convicted)Banks is the ultimate in poodles put in place in an attempt by Slippery and the other National Party manipulators of the democratic process in an attempt to have total control of the right wing of New Zealand politics,

    The bite here for Slippery has Him now in a damned if He does and damned if He doesnt position,if He gives Banks the well deserved kick as a Minister then He,(Slippery),has to put on hold such things as asset sales, of course the longer Slippery carries on defending Banks with the Prime Ministers definition of whether or not a crime has been committed by Banks as the test the greater the electoral damage that National as a Party will suffer,

    We all can bet tho that Slippery is now wishing that (a) He never had the ‘chimps tea-party’ with Banks prior to the 2011 election and (b) puppets like Banks came with no prior history,

    As an aside,customers of whore-houses are called John’s by those who operate such ventures,it appears that these particular John’s are determined to turn the Parliament and its processes into just that,

    The Slippery Prime Minister,damned if He does and damned if He don’t, I am delighted by the thought that it will be Banks that brings this shoddy National Government to its knees…

  6. Uturn 6

    As mike Smith says:

    “In the days when anonymous donations were allowed to political parties, they all came via intermediaries, in the Labour Party’s case from lawyers trust accounts.”

    For a seasoned veteran like Dotcom to give a cheque as an anonymous donation, and for Banks’ crew to accept it with eyes wide shut, is so completely un-covert that you’d have to be either 10 years old or completely drunk on your own hubris to not know who sent it.

    A cheque is just like cash, except unlike an envelope of small unmarked bills passed under the table at a pizzeria, it’s like passing an envelope of money in full public view with your photo, name and address included. At the point where the concept of a cheque emerged, there was no defense for not knowing who sent it.

  7. yeshe 7

    Perhaps I am misunderstanding, but the original statements from Kim DC suggested to me the cheques were drawn immediately, as in, he called his staff who could cut and sign them in to the room there and then with Banks present. Indeed, these are the same staff named as extra witnesses to the conversations. Am I misunderstanding ?

    I want to believe that Banks left the mansion with the two cheques in his grubby little fingers. Game, set and match.

    • Nick K 7.1

      Yes, you are misunderstanding. The cheques were deposited anonymously into a bank account a few days later.

      • freedom 7.1.1

        they may well have been deposited days later Nick but the story as i understand it is they were drawn on the day in front of Banks, in front of witnesses, namely KDC and his business manager for starters.

  8. Nick K 8

    “The name’s on the cheque!”


    • Colonial Viper 8.1

      So it would have been easy for Banks to learn where those donations came from. Not saying he did learn, but it would have been easy for both himself and his staff to have done so.

  9. Dv 9

    Why cheques, why not a bank transfer?

    Anyway now Banks has focused attention on all his donations.

    It seems to me that when you are in a hole stop digging.

    • Colonial Viper 9.1

      Cheques leave a paper trail which cannot be erased. Dotcom was in high tech business, he could easily have done everything electronically had he wished to. Therefore he must have preferred it this ‘old fashioned’ slower way.

      • Pete George 9.1.1

        It sounds like Banks is the one who wanted it this way, either to keep the any donations anonymous, or to try and hide his connections. He didn’t bank on Dotcom getting arrested, and the rest is very recent history.

  10. Nick K 10

    Probably for the same reason Len Brown had secret anonynmous donors through a trust.

    • ghostwhowalksnz 10.1

      But you dont have any of those donors crowing from the rooftops about it

    • Deano 10.2

      fine. take down Len Brown if you can. You won’t find anyone on the Left defending him.

    • McFlock 10.3

      point being, they’re donations from the trust.
      Did banksie declare any payments from Megastuff Limited?

  11. Nick K 11

    Yes. True. That’s the odd thing about this. Most anonymous donors STFU about their donations. Kim Dotcom is very new to this it seems, and it also seems he has nothing to lose.

    • felix 11.1

      So go ask Len Brown about whatever you think he’s done. If he starts limply flinging watery bullshit around like Banks did, maybe his donors will come crawling out of out of the woodwork like Dotcom did, and maybe Brown will have a hilarious meltdown in front of the camera like Banks is doing now, then you might have a big story on your hands.

      Good luck.

      • The Gormless Fool formerly known as Oleolebiscuitbarrell 11.1.1

        maybe Brown will have a hilarious meltdown in front of the camera

        The chances are high. Remember that hilarious smacking himself about the head thing?

    • Pascal's bookie 11.2

      Most anonymous donors agree that they are anonymous.

  12. Kiwi Pete 12

    So? You can’t claim it was anonymous.

  13. freedom 13

    funny how the ’15-20 minutes’ conversation that was all the contact Banks had had with KDC now involves Lunch at the mansion, a birthday party toast, front seats at the fireworks and a two hour lunch

    someone should inform The Doctor that he and The Master were not the only survivors from Gallifrey

    • Colonial Viper 13.1

      Lol…I bet Banks wishes he could get himself ‘Time Locked’ out of this inevitable scenario haha.

  14. ianmac 14

    If a by-election elected a National MP, how would Charter Schools fare given the claim that Charter Schools were an ACT plan?

    We will continue because it is a good idea?
    It was our plan all along?
    Too much has been planned to stop now?
    We had to give Ms Issacs a job?

    • Carol 14.1

      Or they stand Isaacs for Epsom.

      • ianmac 14.1.1

        And Key can have a cup of tea with her and things will be back to normal but with a woman Leader of the Party and Chairwoman of the Caucus and Whip and Chief Charterist.

  15. mikebug 15


    the underhand corrupt dealing goes on like usual.
    Banks is in trouble not for what he did…but for getting caught at it. Same old same old.

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