Housing NZ evicts drug dealer and now all the hand wringing starts

The eviction of an alleged drug dealer from a state house has raised questions over Housing New Zealand’s role in society.

The Government agency says it can’t be seen to condone illegal activity, but the woman’s lawyer says Housing New Zealand’s job is to house people, not play judge and jury.

The woman, whom we are calling “Kelly”, is facing eviction from her Housing New Zealand home. She has children, aged eight and under.

“I’m sad, broken for my kids because they’ll have nowhere to stay, and just now and then I have my breakdowns where I want to cry,” she says.

Kelly says she wasn’t given a reason why she had to leave – Housing New Zealand doesn’t have to give one in its 90-day notices.

She suspects it’s because of drug charges she’s facing, which are still before the courts.

Her lawyer says regardless of all that, it’s no way for Housing New Zealand to act.

“To throw a woman into the street with four infant children, with no support, unable to get anywhere else to live simply because there’s an arbitrary decision made to evict her – in my view, that is wrong,” says lawyer Michael Meyrick.

It is wrong.  But let me make it easier for Michael.  If “Kelly” had been at the pub boozing all day with the kids at home, CYF would have come in and taken the kids away.   I see no difference in this case.  If your mum is dealing drugs from the house, she’s endangering her kids. 

“It is Housing New Zealand’s job to house people; it is the courts’ job to determine guilt or innocence and determine necessary punishment,” says Auckland Action Against Poverty’s Alastair Russell.

Kelly says she’s been a good tenant.

“I pay my rent on time and I’m looking after the yards and just trying to keep it as tidy as possible.”

She pays her rent on time.  No surprise there; she’s running a drug shop from a government home.

In a statement, Housing New Zealand said ending a tenancy is a last resort.

It went on to say: “Police executed a search warrant at her house and found drugs, and the tenant admitted she had been selling up to 60 tinnies daily, with a value of $1200 a day.”

Housing New Zealand said the activity took place in a community densely populated with schools and churches and there were concerns the tenant had children living with her.

Exactly.  Call in CYF.

Its decision to evict has been backed by the Tenancy Tribunal, but her lawyer says it lacks compassion.

“They’ve demonstrated themselves as an organisation as one that doesn’t see itself having a social responsibility and I think, as a state agency, it ought to have,” says Mr Meyrick.

If Kelly is evicted, she could seek help from other housing providers, but wouldn’t be eligible for a Housing New Zealand property for another year.

Labour keeps harping on about homeless people, but we never actually get to know how many of them are “un-housable” due to their criminal past, their mental health or other societal problems.

It’s very easy:  want to live in a government supplied home?  Look after your family and don’t break the law.


– Newshub

  • Nige.

    She pays her rent on time likely because it is directly transferred from one government department to another via automatic payment.

  • Jude

    If she is earning all that money dealing drugs she can pay her own rent and not rely on the state.
    Hopefully her benefits will be cut too!

  • Quinton Hogg

    She breaks the law deliberately and now she wants us to feel sorry for her.
    She should look in the mirror to see the cause of her problems. The old adage “Ye reap what ye sow” applies here.

  • Bob Dazzler

    Gee, all of that tax free income from selling drugs and you get a taxpayer paid for home too. How cool is that.

  • Sally

    She is ripping off the welfare system, taking handouts while making money from allegedly selling drugs.
    Was she concerned about her children at the same time as having drugs inside ‘her’ house (actually our house) and having strangers knocking on her door at all times of the night?

    • johnandali

      So having been caught out, she plays the dependent children game. You can’t kick me out, just think what would happen to the kids. Perhaps the dad or daddies could look after the kids while she finds another sucker to rent a house from. As if.

      • Ruby in the Dust

        She is saying “why won’t someone else think of the children!” because she clearly hasn’t been.

  • Bob Dazzler

    Finally, legal aid as well?

  • Keanne Lawrence

    Playing the emotional card is akin to seeing the joker as a “picture” card. Eviction from a state house is the least of her problems. With that level of undeclared income she doesn’t qualify for a subsidised state house, a benefit or even most likely the WFF.
    Court proceedings will yield up the usual wet but ticket slapping followed by peddling her sob story to numerous agencies. But what the heck she is still young enough to pop out another couple of moneypuna to replace the illegal income stream.

  • Hard1

    The tenant, by confessing, now owes the IRD a considerable amount of GST and Income tax. There would be only one way to pay that tax. Sell tinnies.

  • axeman

    I don’t know if she is on a benefit but If she is on one at all it should be stopped.
    This is simply an old fashion example of consequences of your actions.
    I work hard, pay my taxes, and happy for my taxes to assist the genuine needy, but the people who fleece the system make it harder for the Govt to help the ones who genuinely need help. Don’t cry me a river when you get caught for cheating

    • Keeping Stock

      I couldn’t agree more Axeman. I have been paying taxes as a fulltime employee since 1974, and shudder to think how much has been deducted in that time. I don’t begrudge that being spent on those in genuine need or hardship. In addition, I support a number of charities which work with those who are down on their luck.

      I have very little sympathy however for people like Kelly who have chosen to live outside the laws that the majority of New Zealanders do abide by. She has no one to blame for her situation other than herself, and I agree that the authorities should be involved with her children. These are exactly the kinds of children that the new Ministry for Vulnerable Children should be intervening on behalf of; growing up in a tinnie house does not bode well for their future.

  • Bob Dazzler

    Succinctly put by Axeman.

  • Keeping Stock

    Her lawyer says regardless of all that, it’s no way for Housing New Zealand to act.

    “To throw a woman into the street with four infant children, with no support, unable to get anywhere else to live simply because there’s an arbitrary decision made to evict her – in my view, that is wrong,” says lawyer Michael Meyrick.

    Since when has an eight-year-old child been classified as an “infant”?

    • Jayar

      You almost have to admire her lawyer who manages to find reasons (despite all the evidence against his client) why she should be allowed to stay permanently in (our) house.

      • Michelle

        No doubt on the taxpayer teat so he will keep stringing it along for as long as possible

    • Blueburd

      Chris Lynch was saying she has up to 60 people calling a day for drugs. I’d say she has plenty of places to go and stay.

  • Andy

    At that level of earning she should have saved enough for a rainy day.

  • waldopepper

    imagine being someone in genuine need of a state house, and stuck on a waiting list. then hearing about this woman making $1200 a day selling drugs (so she can clearly afford a house from the private sector,) and all you want is a roof over your head for your wife and kids.

    if my taxes are going to be used to pay for a house so a drug dealer can destroy peoples lives with drugs, i want my taxes back thanks very much. thats not the social contract i entered into with the government. they have an obligation to spend my money wisely, and with due care.

    • Your taxes are being spent on a witch hunt against Mr Mihaka, Te Rongo Nui o te Ao, and others – this is not an isolated case – and it’s time taxpayers had a good long look at the choked up so called justice system – it’s all very well for certain politicians to talk the talk about prisons – if they paid a bit more attention to the outrageous abuse of the taxpayer’s money by incompetent and corrupt lawyers and public servants they’d soon see that selling a few tinnies pales in comparison – and people who sell a few tinnies – often to people like Helen Kelly, Paul Holmes, to judges, lawyers, great elderly care workers, professionals in all fields, – does not equate to “destroy peoples lives with drugs” – time to introduce accurate impairment testing instead of the current “stand on one leg and shut your eyes and touch your nose” rubbish.

  • Wheninrome

    Of course housing nz can be judge and jury it is owned by the taxpayers of nz who are also able to be the jury in any trial she faces

  • cows4me

    I wonder if those offending this way had been kick out on their arses years ago would we have the problems we have today. Bloody dripping wet, hand wringing liberals and their softly softly polices have done way more harm to families, children and general society than any Conservative ideals would have. Sometimes you have to be cruel to be kind.

  • JEL51

    Newshub, we all would like to know if the tenant who has a daily tax-free income of up to $1200 is receiving any benefit, or any extras from WINZ, is legal aid available to cover legal costs and if any of the children’s Dads housed at the same house.
    Finish the job before expecting the public to bring out the tissues.

  • Eiselmann

    Michael good on you, I’m sure it won’t take much for you to offer ‘Kelly’ a couple of rooms in your home. I’m sure your law abiding neighbours will be just as happy living next door to a drug house as ‘Kelly’s’ current law abiding neighbours are happy to have a drug house in their midst.

    If ‘Kelly’ really wants to plead about how unfair all this is, then get her to do it to the families of. those who she has destroyed for money…I’m sure they would give her a short shape lesson in real suffering….maybe you should meet with the families of her victims as well Michael , tell them how tough it is for ‘Kelly’, how everyone is being mean to her.

  • oldmanNZ

    Is she really sad and about to cry… Its just the lawyer instructions to make her play the victim.

    My hunch is, she doesn’t care about her kids, raising them with gang affiliation and drugs, who knows, if she got good, she might progress to P.

    She can afford to rent out a motel for a few weeks.
    Or even a house, but no one would want her as a tenant.

    And what of the kids…. They will grow up with the same attitude.

    If they were in another country with the death penalty, would we care?

  • The media continue to willfully ignore the EVIDENCE regarding the attempted eviction of Te Ringa Mangu (Dun) Mihaka, which is of far more public interest and not as easily manipulated into ‘click bait’. Despite the claims of HNZC that they don’t need a reason to issue a 90 day notice, in Mr Mihaka’s case they DID state the reason, and it does NOT stand up to scrutiny. Either HNZC are lying, or the NZ Police are lying – either way, a considerable amount of taxpayers money is being wasted on a witch hunting exercise, which has now reached the Human Rights Review Tribunal. HNZC are alleging Police told them that Mr Mihaka “is a serious cannabis smoker”, “uses methamphetamine” and lives in a “suspected P house.” Mr Mihaka emphatically denies being a methamphetamine user. The fact that he once stood as a candidate for the Aotearoa Legalise Cannabis Party indicates discrimination on the basis of political opinion. Interestingly, despite the strident claims of HNZC that this information was received from NZ Police, the response from Police to a letter from Mr Mihaka’s lawyers regarding breach of privacy and defamation makes it perfectly clear that Police deny the claims of HNZC. The reason given by HNZC for the eviction was an allegation from another tenant that Mr Mihaka assaulted him. Mr Mihaka strongly denies this allegation and the evidence shows that the allegation does not stand up to scrutiny, and that the alleged ‘victim’ in fact admitted inappropriately touching Mr Mihaka, twice. Mr Mihaka has made numerous attempts to engage a lawyer to act for him, two appeal lawyers clearly acted incompetently in not even noticing that Mr Mihaka was never given Disclosure, let alone notice the serious discrepancies between the Disclosure and the Court evidence and draw them to the attention of the appeal Court. Mr Mihaka’s Maori Agent has applied to the Office of Human Rights Proceedings for legal assistance, but according to the response received from that Office, since “moving to the cloud” they’ve been unable to access their emails – which is in itself seriously concerning. Further information can be found at http://teringamangu.blogspot.co.nz/ including a copy of the OHRP email.

    • johnandali

      So what does the tenancy agreement say about the consumption of drugs?

      • The tenancy agreement says no illegal activity is allowed on the premises. In Mr Mihaka’s case it was never established with any degree of credibility that any illegal activity occurred. The media often prefer to focus on easier targets, such as a woman who admitted selling however many tinnies a day – rather than a legitimate political and legal precedent setter who is being indisputably discriminated against.

  • Bob Dazzler

    Hey, how about the families of those whose lives are destroyed/blighted by the drugs she sold them having a little restorative justice session with her. (No witnesses eh)

  • PersonOfColor:WHITE

    What about compassion for those on the waiting list that are not ratbags conducting illegal business operations from a state house?

  • Graeme

    She should have thought of that before the dealing began. Interesting that the “homeless” we see sleeping on the Auckland streets are males, no females. Where are their families anyway.

  • Mark

    ““They’ve demonstrated themselves as an organisation as one that doesn’t
    see itself having a social responsibility and I think, as a state
    agency, it ought to have,” says Mr Meyrick.”

    Actually Mr Meyrick they have demonstrated a great social responsibility and prevented further illegal acts being perpetrated on the Local Community & on the Taxpaying Community & good on them!

  • Ruahine

    Is this the same Dun Mihaka that was always dropping his pants and exposing himself when ever there was a news camera around?

  • Digger

    I suspect the lesson will be lost on the others doing exactly the same as I doubt the bother with the news. They need to hear about the eviction, it might be actually be a deterrent to some.

  • WBC

    Poor Kids. The best thing that can happen for them is to be removed from their abusive Mother.

  • BigNose

    $1200 per day? Wonder how much benefit she’s getting on top. But I’m sure it’s enough to buy a property in most places in NZ.