When police concluded that the “teapot tapes” cameraman Bradley Ambrose probably committed an offence, but decided not to prosecute because they were not satisfied that they could make out all the elements of the offence to the required criminal standard, there was an outcry among liberal-minded folk because the police appeared to be saying that someone was guilty even though police just couldn’t prove it. We were reminded by liberal types that the police don’t determine someone’s guilt because, in a free and democratic society subject to the rule of law, determining guilt is the domain of the courts.
But now we have what appears to be a collective amnesia, because we happen to dislike the person at the end of the police’s attentions. I don’t like John Banks, and I think it’s reasonable to conclude from his public statements that he is a liar and lacks any sort of moral compass. It is also reasonable to conclude that a person like John Banks is utterly unfit to be a minister, or even an MP. But he has not committed any offence, has not been charged with any offence, and has not “got off on a technicality”.
Of course Labour has just opened themselves up for skewering on a number of recent cases, with their behaviour. A re-visit of the Darren Hughes affair is the most salient, but so to the ongoing investigations into their cash for citizenship scandal involving Shane Jones and Bill Liu.
The Bill Liu affair is the one though most close in substance to the allegations that Labour are making and in their case the clear cash for citizenship favours are much, much more smelly than cash for nothing which is what Kim Dot-con got for his donation.
All this is just petty revenge for not getting a soft mattress in the pokie when he demanded one. Kim Dot-con thought, like Bill Liu that he had bought favours from a politician. Unfortunately for him John Banks is not a member of the Labour party.
Now with him turning up at parliament he is just like Michelle Boag and just as irrelevant and without the Versace suits.
Oh the tired old phrase has been wheeled out again…it seems that is “not in the public interest to pursue a prosecution”:
Police will not lay charges over the “teapot tape” saga and say freelance cameraman Bradley Ambrose has received a warning.
Assistant Police Commissioner Malcolm Burgess held a press conference this afternoon and said police had resolved the case.
The announcement follows a long-running investigation after Prime Minister John Key complained about Ambrose recording a conversation between him and ACT MP John Banks on the campaign trail in 2011.
A letter of regret had been forwarded to Prime Minister John Key and John Banks.
Key said he welcomed Ambrose’s letter and believed there was now no need for the prosecution to continue.
While he only received a warning, Ambrose’s actions were illegal, Burgess said.
Future occurrences were likely to be prosecuted.
“We were satisfied on this occasion that there was [prima facie evidence].
But police decided there was not sufficient public interest in the matter going to court, he said.
“I reached the view that a prosecution was not required in this instance.”
In the view of police investigators, the recording was “most likely” on purpose, but at the least “reckless”.
The letter to Key and Banks from Ambrose was “one of the factors that we took into account” and his lack of a criminal record was another.
At least Bradley Ambrose now admits he was wrong and his apology letter sees the end of his spurious defamation case too.
Now the Police have finished up with that investigation perhaps they might like to advise progress on the more than a dozen cases referred by the Electoral Commission for breaches of the Electoral Act….surely breaking the laws protecting our democracy ARE in the public interest to prosecute.
Russell Brown at Public Address was the first reasonable size website to publish the audio and Youtube video of the teapot tapes. At the time he was all full of bravado coomenting:
He isn’t so sure now after taking the links down:
What is very interesting is that none of the mainstream media sites who made this an issue int eh forst place have had the balls to publish even links to the files. For all their talk about public interest you would have thought they would have done so now that Bradley Ambrose has released the file into the wild.
That would suggest that their legal advice is somewhat better than Alistair Thompson at Scoop who has also now published the audio and Youtube video. It seems though that Russell Brown may be furiously trying to stuff the cat back in the bag.
The Teatapes have been published. A short time ago I was sent an email that had a Soundcloud link and a Youtube link (uploaded by 2Johns2Cups) to the tea tapes. They are easily found, but I will not link to them until the legal position of the tapes is clarified, at this point in time it is still an illegal recording and it is still subject to a Police investigation.
However, I have listened to them and now you can too if you are of a mind. You will now know that in stark contrast to the sensational media reporting of the tapes at the time that there is nothing “explosive” on the tapes at all.
TV3, Duncan Garner, Patrick Gower and the staff of the Herald on Sunday should hang their heads in shame for their News of the World style tactics in publicising this and changing the focus of the election from issues into a sideshow perpetrated and manipulated by them for political gain.
This whole episode shows the parlous state of some media outlets in NZ.
It is curious that the tape has been released on the same day as the Prime Minister’s first major speech of the year. Proving that this whole stitch-up has been a political act from beginning to end, shamelessly milked by media outlets desperate for sales and corrupt politicians desperate for votes.
For photographer Geoff Walker, yesterday went from capturing moments of excitement and anticipation to providing vital but horrific pictures of the accident.
When most would turn away, Mr Walker continued to take photos of the final minutes of eleven lives – including that of his close friend, pilot Lance Hopping.
“It’s part of your experience and craft. I just need to keep going on with this, you know, even though it’s not something you want to see because it was a friend involved. It was not like someone in Iraq or a war zone. It’s someone meeting their destiny,” says Mr Walker.
Mr Walker describes the accident as a nightmare ending to a day that had started perfectly.
Geoff Walker was in possession of some very valuable footage of the accident. Did he sell them? Nope, he handed them over to Police and deleted the originals off the camera.
Mr Walker has since given the photographs to police and other agencies investigating the crash and has deleted them from his camera.
He will not release them out of respect for the victim’s families and hopes that they will help investigators work out exactly what happened.
Compare his ethical and honourable actions with the scurrilous actions of Bradley Ambrose, the cameraman who taped a private conversation and who then sold his recording to the highest bidders.
Mr Jan Trotman, 66, kept man of St Mary’s Bay issued a press release about the tea-tapes claiming that the case had nothing to do with the Attorney-General. This drunk old fool thinks that it has nothing to do with the Attorney-General.
IN THE HIGH COURT OF NEW ZEALAND
UNDER The Declaratory Judgments Act 1908 BETWEEN BRADLEY CHRISTOPHER GEOFFREY AMBROSE Plaintiff AND THE ATTORNEY-GENERAL Defendant
Hearing: 22 November 2011
And here was I thinking that Mr Jan Trotman calls himself a lawyer.
This whole claim that costs is somehow retribution is a storm in teacup. Bradley Ambrose took the government to court to protect his own legal position and lost. Costs are levied against losers, happens every day, especially against vexatious litigants.
In June I released the details of several months of investigation into the Labour party website which was left wide open with no security.
I started by releasing the minutes of a meeting of Labour North. In those minutes it revealed that Labour planned to use the resources of parliamentary services to campaign, and the attendence of an ALP strategist to assist.
Then I released an email that Labour party General Secretary Chris Flatt sent to members once they realised what was about to happen to them. They were in full damage control mode. They spun and lied from the get go. I already had and still have all their data. There was no system vulnerability and no hacking. It had taken me several months of analysis to be ready for this week and I was going to make them lie and prove they lied.
But I was under attack from the leftwing, sho started the smears almost immediately. I reminded them of their own words about Wikileaks, not that they cared. It seems that it was more important to smear the messenger rather than wonder at the parlous state of Labour’s information security.
Then it got serious. The Labour party threatened me. It is ironic now given the amount of posts they have written about John Key and Bradley Ambrose. Even more ironic as I did nothing illegal.
I responded to Chris Flatt in typical Whale fashion:
In response to your letter of 12 June 2011, I will show the same compassion to private individuals as Labour showed when using The Hollowmen.
The exception will be that I will do it in full public view not hiding behind the privilege of parliament.
Then I started to drip feed information about Labour’s credit card donations. This information was in the clear for anyone with mild interest to gather up. I was pretty interested and so I did. Initially I was sceptical that these were production system transaction but then as I scanned through them I found the proof I needed.
Cactus Kate had donated to the Labour party as a result of a sledge on Trevor Mallard. But the real result was that I now had all of Labour’s credit cards transactions taken from their website.
Just to mix it up I released the information I had gathered about ALP consultant Sandy Rippingale. Trevor Mallard had run a massive, defamatory attack on political consultants int eh preceding week and yet we now had evidence that Labour too used consultants. The leaks form the website were proving what many already knew, that Labour lies, cheats and does everything that they accuse others of doing.
Labour and their proxies try to blame me for the information being made public. I tell people to complain to the Privacy Commissioner. Labour said they were going to yet for some reason I haven’t heard a squeak out of them in more than 6 months.
Donors to the Labour Party have every right to be angry, but not with me. The Labour Party failed in their duty of care to protect your information, not me. If anything I have done a great service to highlight the Labour Party’s inadequacies in their security of information.
I am now openly mocking Labour. It is hard not to when they blatantly lie about simple details.
What I can tell you is that Labour continues to tell lies. They claim they are contacting more than 18,000 donors. There aren’t that many, there are only 452. Labour can’t be trusted to keep your data secure and they certainly can’t be trusted to tell the truth.
One thing Labour have failed to understand is that I have known about and planned this story fro a couple of months. I float teasers to see how they react. They have choices, they can tell the truth or they can lie. I predict to my friends and confidants who have helped me with this information (none are in political parties) that they will lie. I have war-gamed each possibly issue. So far Labour is proving me right, they are liying and I am showing them they have.
I have to admit this now but I was having fun, but mostly that was because of the way the Labour party were reacting.
Suddenly though Labour and their proxies, including John Pagani start getting into the media accusing me of hacking and other illegal behaviour. I let it run for a couple of days then I post the video of how I did it. Again their lies are exposed for all to see. Every step of the way Labour has lied about salient details and every step of the way I have proved their lies. As I said I war-gamed every aspect of this story so that I could predict how they would react and so I could be prepared for their attacks. They wrongly thought I couldn’t prove how I did it because they took down the sites. I had kept telling people from the get go that I had been in there for months. That I had prepared and one of my preparations was a video to show how I did it:
Then Greg Presland, the third rate flea lawyer from West Auckland, craps his pants and emails me. I publish his email as it is my policy to publish all correspondence of this type. He stupidly insists that I publish his email in it’s entirety including his email address, phone numbers and website.
Then I show how labour had left passwords in the clear in the code of their website. Passwords to their credit card processing provider. Once again Labour has lied to people, once again I knew they would and prove it.
It all started with the “Let’s Not” campaign website, now I am using that site to openly mock Labour:
One of the things that has never adequately been answered nor investigated is the use of parliamentary staffers to process financial transactions. We already had seen that labour planned to use Parliamentary Services resources in campaigning and the leaks from their website showed that parliamentary staffers were active in processing financial transactions. This is one of the reasons why I constantly call for the opening up of parliamentary services to the Official Information Act.
The story is by now not only mainstream in New Zealand but it has also gone global. Labour have had two weeks of embarrassment, lies and subterfuge as they try to weasel out the predicament they are in. So far none of their attacks on me have any merit or substance. But I am not finished yet with them.
I published an email from the NZEI to those 18,000 where they lie about the connection between Labour and the NZEI. Unfortunately for Paul Goulter I also have an email from Chris Flatt to those same people outlining a slightly different story.
The supporter database software, logs and email trails show that Labour is tracking where its emails end up. They have spent nearly two weeks moaning about privacy and yet they track emails just like Blue State Digital do.
Labour are now starting to feel heat from mainstream media sick of their lies. They are now full out lying about where they got the NZEI mails from. Labour now stand accused of the very thing they were pointing the finger at me for.
Then Phil Goff lied. Not a subtle lie, an outright full blown false-hood. Again I prove he has lied. Labour keeps giving the story legs by lying. Each time they do I produce documents to prove it. I am now simply reacting to each of their lies, drip feeding the truth.
Phil Goff has decided then to continue to lie, to tell even bigger whoppers, but then I guess at this stage he was being closely managed by parliaments biggest liar of all, Trevor Mallard.
All along I have followed my own rules. I never ask a question unless I already know the answer. Labour still haven’t worked that out. I continue to be gob-smacked that they haven’t conducted an audit of just exactly what I have.
With this story I outlined fully exactly how I obtained the data, at every step I published documents or proof to show how labour, Phil Goff and the NZEI lied about various aspects of the scandal. At the very least though I showed that Labour were lackadaisical about internet security, treated the privacy of their donors, members and contacts with the flimsiest of security and that if they couldn’t run a website then they surely couldn’t be trusted to run the country. I ahd also proved that when in a corner Phil Goff will lie. This would come back to haunt him in coming months.
Now, the Attorney-General has filed a memorandum in the High Court at Auckland seeking $13,669.45 in costs from Ambrose. Those costs include $3760 for hearing preparation costs and counsel fees; $5076 for general costs including researching and filing; $1377.70 for air travel and $278.52 for taxis.
Counsel for the Attorney-General, Sean Kinsler, said the Attorney-General consented to bringing Ambrose’s matter to a hearing just two days after it was filed in the High Court. That caused a “compressed timetable” and only two working days for the Crown to do the necessary pre-hearing work.
He said the total spent by the Attorney-General on the matter, up to the end of the hearing, was $23,442.95.
However, they were seeking what they believed was an appropriate and reasonable rate based on the work done and expenses incurred.
What! What is appropriate and reasonable is for the full costs that Ambrose caused through his actions in taking it to court are billed not some arbitrary amount.
The Attorney-General should be seeking the full amount.