Worth mired in corruption again

Written By: - Date published: 7:34 pm, April 16th, 2009 - 36 comments
Categories: corruption, john key - Tags: ,


(click the picture for the video)

  • Why would Worth visit the Sandhu family to whom he was a stranger and who had nothing to do with his portfolio? What did he say to them?
  • Why would he introduce himself as the Minister of Internal Affairs to the family? And why would he lie about that to the media?
  • How well does he really know Ross Monroe, the millionaire father of one of the alleged attackers of Mr Sandhu?

It looks very much like Richard Worth went to see the Sandhu family to use the prestige of his office to put pressure on them to drop the assault complaint as a favour to his mate.

Even if that’s not why he did it, it’s still a clear conflict of interest and it’s the fact of the conflict that matters. A minister cannot go throwing his weight around in a police investigation involving his mates. Not if we are to be confident that our government isn’t corrupt.

Macro sums it up:

It must be time for that muppet to fall on his sword, he is getting beyond a joke and hopefully Key shows some guts and axes him tomorrow.

Key must get rid of Worth or he will look weak and irresponsible.

36 comments on “Worth mired in corruption again”

  1. mike 1

    “It looks very much like Richard Worth went to see the Sandhu family to use the prestige of his office to put pressure on them to drop the assault complaint as a favour to his mate.”

    Drawing a very long bow indeed there John – have you any proof to back up your story? The friend of a friend of a friend doesn’t cut it either….

    • Grey 1.1

      What part of “it looks very much like” doesn’t mike get?

      Conflicts of interest create an appearance of corruption. It’s nearly impossible to ever prove corruption actually happened because it’s so easy to hide. Corruption is such a poisonous thing that just the appearance of corruption is enough to damn and so must be strictly avoided. Worth has failed to avoid the appearance that be has been acting corruptly.

  2. jerry 2


    The standard and Whaleoil are in agreement.

  3. BLiP 3

    hahahaha – excellent!

    Don’t you see how much more valuable this bumbling bozo is to the opposition if he is left in cabinet? His presence completely negates John Key’s promise to hold anyone accountable – Worth is a living, breathing, walking, talking example of how hollow Key is.

  4. gobsmacked 4

    Simple question:

    Since becoming an MP – or more pertinently, since becoming a Minister, how often has Richard Worth visited the victims of serious crime, unannounced, uninvited? Daily? Weekly?

    If it’s something he does every time there’s a victim (and not even in his old electorate), then he must be very busy, because there are plenty of victims of crime out there, sadly. But hey, good on him.

    Or did he just happen to make an exception for this particular case? If so, why?

  5. Pascal's bookie 5

    Mr Worth’s office told Campbell Live yesterday that he had met the father an Auckland millionaire business owner a few times over the past 20 years.

    The office clarified later that it was something more like several times in the last five years.

    However, 3 News understands they have met in recent months.

    Classic. I hardly know the man.

    In a statement Mr Worth said:

    “He was concerned to hear of the plight of Mr Sandhu. He went only in a personal capacity…

    “He introduced himself as the Minister Of Internal Affairs,’ says the victim’s wife Marmeet Sandhu

    Righto. This confusion about hats seems to be a problem. Remember this from last week?

    Key has said Worth is effectively on his final warning, although Worth has said he does not believe this to be the case.

    “Who’s right? Place your bets, around and around, around it goes, where it stops nobody kno…, oh what’s that you say? Prime Minister’s office calling?”

    A spokesperson for the Prime Minister says the Government does not believe this is an issue and that the link between Mr Worth and the businessman is tenuous.

    Looks like we have a winner.

  6. Rex Widerstrom 6

    Even if that’s not why he did it, it’s still a clear conflict of interest and it’s the fact of the conflict that matters.

    Until the conflicting accounts of the visit are sorted out, it’s an appearance of conflict of interest, surely?

    Given that, however, I’d argue that your reaction is still appropriate because avoiding even the appearance of improper behaviour ought to be something that comes as second nature to a Minister, even a rookie. If you don’t run a mile from such a situation (or alternatively invite a reporter or two along with you so there can be no doubt about what you said, if you truly believe you have to go) then you’re either:

    a) an idiot; or
    b) simply don’t give a damn for the standards by which most reasonable people would expect MPs to conduct themselves.

    Don’t get me wrong, everyone makes mistakes, but this isn’t some ludicrous “crime’s linked to the phases of the moon” brainfart. This visit is something that would surely have been considered carefully and undertaken with full cognisance of the way in which it could potentially have been perceived, hence my conclusion.

  7. Felix 7

    I think it’s time for Worth to come clean and own up to being a Labour Party mole.

  8. yearling 8

    heh heh – brainfart

  9. Whether it’s a conflict or not is sometimes difficult to determine. If this wasn;t a conflict it was downright bloody dumb and stupid and Worth deserves all he gets.

  10. RedLogix 10

    Again the comparison with Helen Clark’s competence is worth making. Recall the ridiculous ‘speedergate’ affair that was made so much foolish fuss was made over. Recall how much was made of HC failing to intervene and ‘take the blame’ for the actions of the Police and PS staff who were charged, (charges that later a High Court judge totally repudiated..)

    The critical point that was of course lost on all right wingers, was that as a Minister there was absolutely no way she should have had even the slightest, the least tangential personal influence in a Police investigation, or Court proceedings.

    As a lawyer, or even a backbench MP, Worth’s actions here would be not overly notable… but he seems to have totally failed to grasp what is required of him as a Minister. If Key fails to act now, even just to suspend his Ministerial warrant while matters are clarified… the only simple explanation must be that Worth has a few ‘favours’ to call in, perhaps around his stepping aside to allow Rodney Hide to win Epsom in 2002.

    • Richard 10.1

      If the same blowtorch of scrutiny was applied to Worth(less) as was applied to HC over the Speedergate affair, Worth would be investigated by police for witness intimidation or perverting the course of justice. But until the media stop sucking up to the Nats, that won’t happen.
      How many chances is Key going to give Worth for things that have happened in his six months as a minister? Did Benson-Pope get as many chances? Especially as his alleged tennis ball affair was around twenty years prior to becoming a minister.

  11. Bender 11

    Let’s hope Mr Key keeps Richard Worth in as long as possible. Keeping on a man with such poor judgement can only hurt the government’s credibility.

    Actually… why is Key holding onto Worth? Friends perhaps? Some kind of weird agreement?

    • Quoth the Raven 11.1

      I think in part it is because Key’s been saying Worth has done nothing wrong. If he does get rid of him it’s effectively admitting that Worth has done something wrong. Key thinks it will do more damage to his party’s standings getting rid of him than it would keeping him.
      Or maybe he’s just waiting for someone to write it into his programming, I mean diary.

    • Felix 11.2

      It’s a Stonecutter thing.

  12. Trevor Mallard 12

    Isn’t the bigger issue the fact that the Minister of Police went to see the key witness even before the police had interviewed him. She is even more stupid because she has a real conflict whereas Worth’s is all perception.

    Just for the record because I am sure it will be brought up I have met Ross Munro many times over the past ten years and Simon several times.

  13. dan 13

    You’re right Trevor. That Judith Collins thing was weird. What the hell would she be doing there? Is she linked to the Munro’s too?

    Of course she might know the taxi driver I guess. Even so, it would be good form for her to steer clear while an investigation is underway so she’s not seen as trying to influence it.

  14. bobo 14

    If the allegations are dropped by Mr Sandhu we will know for sure what they were doing there… This whole episode echos how rugby league player scandals in Aus are handled where club lawyers pay the complainant a visit then strangely the allegations are dropped a few weeks later.

  15. Tigger 15

    ‘I went there on a personal capacity’? Worth has GOT to come up with better lies.

  16. I know I’m banned but…..

    I’m agreeing with you.

    Also Trevor’s name came up in my sniffing around this but it isn’t relevant so I haven’t mentioned it.

    Judith Collins visited because someone rang her office and told her that he was her constituent. She visited in her capacity as the local MP.

    [lprent: Letting through. It is the shock – I can’t believe that we actually agree on something]

  17. Rich 17

    If Worth goes, the Nats will need a new candidate for Epsom. How will they manage to avoid selecting somebody good who might unseat Rodney Hide next time?

  18. sweetd 18


    The nats might decide not to contest the seat next time. Thus ensuring ACT stays in parliament. Similar thing that was done with Dunne years ago. Then again, I think the good folk of Epsom know who to vote for and they know Hide in Epsom equals a few more ACT MP’s in parliament.

  19. exbrethren 19

    Why ask Key to sack Worth?

    Go straight to the top and ask English.

  20. gobsmacked 20

    If Rodney Hide is the de facto National candidate in Epsom in 2011, after thoroughly pissing off much of greater Auckland and especially the Maori Party, John Key is going to have bigger problems than Richard Worth.

  21. Certainly the full weight of the law should be applied those whose assaulted Mr. Sandhu – in fact – make an example of them – just to prove that dodgy connections have no influence under the law, and that ethnic minorities have the same rights to live and work without harrassment as any other.

    A failure to procure a custodial sentence upon conviction would simply prove that 1. the courts, 2. the government; simply believe the above two justifications hold no weight.

    • Macro 21.1

      What’s the betting it will be a T’V’ outcome. Reduced charges and and a smack on the hand?

  22. grumpy 22

    Richard Worth is a goner.

    Lefties are baying for blood, which would normally be a guarantee of him staying but now the right wing of National support see him as a liability and using the same arguments as the left want him sacked.

    Curious how the basic principles of left and right often coincide.

    • Rex Widerstrom 22.1

      Curious how the basic principles of left and right often coincide.

      Not really. Those who are truly right and left usually come to those positions after a thorough examination of principle and belief. And fundamental principles like standards of honesty and integrity are broadly apolitical.

      It’s when they start sliding towards the centre that they begin a slow decline toward venal self-interest. And if they truly abandon every last shred of principle and dignity, they become Peter Dunne.

  23. MikeE 23

    Agreed completely…

    But wasn’t it all the labour supporters suggesting that worth should get in over hide?

  24. Lew 24


    But wasn’t it all the labour supporters suggesting that worth should get in over hide?

    For the same reason that some of those on the other side are hoping against hope that Sue Bradford will be the new Green co-leader.


    • Maynard J 24.1

      And when you look at what Hide is doing to Auckland, you’ve still got a case. One’s being a fool, the other is being dictatorial.

  25. ak 25

    Compare the seriousness of these allegations with the alleged funding fib by Peters last year.

    Consider the difference in stature between two cabinet ministers and a single minor-party player.

    Contrast the current MSM tumbleweed treatment of this issue with last year’s bizarre, prolonged pack-rape of Winnie.

    Recall that Winnie only just dipped below the 5% – causing a change of govt.

    Figure out how to stymie Guyon and his tiny tory cabal of swing-voter influencers.

    Or get used to regression.

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