Anyone squirming yet?

Stuff.co.nz

Finally the Bill Liu case has made its way through the court system and is finally being heard.

A millionaire naturalised Chinese New Zealander who used senior political connections to win citizenship has gone on trial in the High Court, Auckland, today on five charges linked to claims he created a false identity.

In a case that has been before the court for nearly two years, Yong Ming Yan, 41, has pleaded not guilty to five charges over claims he created a false identity in China to get citizenship.

Justice Timothy Brewer is hearing the case without a jury.

Originally Yan was charged with 12 offences but these, the court heard, had been reduced due to issues with evidence from China.

Yan, also known as William Yan, Bill Liu and Yang Liu, arrived in 2001.

He got citizenship with letters of support and lobbying from Labour’s Dover Samuels and Chris Carter as well as National’s Pansy Wong.

The Department of Internal Affairs opposed citizenship saying with two passports, two names and two birth dates they did not know who he was. Then Immigration Minister David Cunliffe over-ruled and granted citizenship.

A large donor to the Labour party, his private VIP citizenship ceremony held in the Maori Affairs Select Committee room and ministers ignoring official advice..David Cunliffe and Shane Jones are the only ones left standing in this sorry affair. I wonder if perhaps they might be a bit worried.

We can at least look forward to three weeks of political intrigue as the trial unfolds.


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