That’s what jail is for

Diddums is the only thing that springs to mind when I read about the mother having a moan about her criminal son being kept in prison, rather than being let out to attend his father’s funeral.

The teenage son of one of the shearers killed in a road crash near Wairoa was refused permission to leave prison to attend his father’s tangi.

James Weir’s mother, Hine Whaanga, is furious he was not allowed to attend the tangi of his father, Kennedy.

Kennedy Weir, 49, was killed with Watson Oliver Tipu, 31, and half-brothers Raimon Keefe, 16, and Zyah Gianni Marsh, 13, when the car being driven by Mr Tipu was involved in a head-on crash north of Raupunga last Wednesday.

Ms Whaanga said her 18-year-old son was distraught at being denied permission to attend the tangi at Wairoa’s Putahi urupa on Monday.

Weir is in Whanganui Prison. In November he was sentenced in Gisborne District Court to two years jail on 31 charges including intentional damage and burglary. He is due for release in September and will serve the remainder of his sentence under conditions set by the Corrections Department.

It may have escaped her notice but the reason people get sent to prison is because they are criminals and society has determined that they should lose their freedom.


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As much at home writing editorials as being the subject of them, Cam has won awards, including the Canon Media Award for his work on the Len Brown/Bevan Chuang story. When he’s not creating the news, he tends to be in it, with protagonists using the courts, media and social media to deliver financial as well as death threats.

They say that news is something that someone, somewhere, wants kept quiet. Cam Slater doesn’t do quiet and, as a result, he is a polarising, controversial but highly effective journalist who takes no prisoners.

He is fearless in his pursuit of a story.

Love him or loathe him, you can’t ignore him.

To read Cam’s previous articles click on his name in blue.

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