Now here is a lawyer earning his keep


Antony de Malmanche’s lawyer has instigated a “trial by media” campaign for his client, and the NZ Herald’s Anna Leask is happy to help out rehabilitate Antony’s public image:

Locked in a small concrete cell with 27 other men, 24 hours a day, with no direct sunlight, showering with a bucket and relying on the kindness of police for the necessities of life is not how Antony de Malmanche imagined his first trip to Bali.

When the 52-year-old left his Wanganui flat, he was on the trip of a lifetime. Life had been cruel to him over the years, and this was his chance at real happiness. He had met a woman on the internet and thought he had found his soulmate. He never imagined that following his heart would land him in a dingy Indonesian jail accused of trying to smuggle 1.7kg of methamphetamine into the country and facing the death penalty.

De Malmanche has limited access to the phone at the Denpasar police station, so his lawyer, Craig Tuck, agreed to act as an intermediary and share details of his client’s daily life.

What a good man that Craig Tuck is.  /sarc

“Tony has given me permission to share some personal circumstances as they are important to the context of the defence and how we position various matters before trial,” Mr Tuck said.

“Tony was one of the children of Lake Alice [Hospital, near Bulls, and spent] three and a half years in a psychiatric institution as a child and young person. He suffers from long-term depression and has had a head injury which makes him slow to process information.”

The head injury – along with back and neck injuries – came when de Malmanche was struck by a falling branch while working as a tree feller in 2002. Two years later, his 7-year-old son, Andre, drowned.

“He is still in shock of the loss of his son,” Mr Tuck said.

“By his own admission he is simple and naive. He had never travelled overseas before, he was overwhelmed and out of his depth and hoping to meet the dream woman.

“Tony is a vulnerable person, probably an ideal target – middle-aged and white with a New Zealand passport.”

Tony was caught smuggling 1.7kg of meth.

The fact he’s a dick is beyond dispute.

But you have to admire Mr Tuck and the NZ Herald getting together to try and sell us a hard luck story.

“Tony is overwhelmed by the support and love shown,” Mr Tuck said.

“He is confused and scared but knows that some of New Zealand is with him.”

I don’t wish Tony any additional grief, but I’m not going to feel sorry for him.  He had enough warnings not to do what he did, and now he’s in a spot where he has to own it, even if his lawyer is trying to make it look like an accident.


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  • Michael_l_c

    It’s not like one gram got slipped in his bag. 1.7kg is a good size, so he knew he was carrying an extra parcel, all in his carry on luggage. No accident there.
    Best hope for him is a complete confession, testify against the others involved & learn from corby about the show to put on. No matter what he has an unpleasant few years coming up. No sympathy.

    • Cadwallader

      This is one case where he ought be crown’s witness and testify long and loud as to the others involved. True he authored this pickle but a residue of me has some concern for him. The old adage ” there’s a fool born every minute and two to take him down” applies here. Even should he end up getting shot his life won’t have been wasted if some of the money men in the drugs game get identified and brought down too. The issue I have with Asian drug penalties is that the mules get nailed and punished while the scum bag users and funders get to remain anonymous,

      • mommadog

        Agreed with the plan but I bet he doesn’t know who any of the others are. All contact would have been through this mystery woman who didn’t show up once he was caught and if all their contact was via email it may not have even been a woman. We know from the Nigerian and other scams that those on the other end are not who they pretend to me.

        • Cadwallader

          Agree. A few forensic problems here but don’t underestimate the Indonesian authorities, they might just get lucky.

          • viking

            Already arrested the woman apparently according to the news today.

  • Hard1

    10 years, if he survives that, then the firing squad. Leniency is out of the question. I doubt he is aware of the big players in the gang who sucked him in.
    The family members seemed to have been incapable of stopping him going. No child wants to see his father shot. But in hindsight, his family should have stopped him going, knowing his weakness, but they didn’t, so that’s it.

  • Backdoor

    We have stopped idiots leaving NZ to go to a war where they may suffer. Now how about removing the passport from other idiots to save them from themselves.

    • Wheninrome

      Then we will become a country full of idiots and religious zealots and the rest of us will have to find a haven somewhere else. I like it here.


    Have a heart cam. I feel sorry for him and hope he gets out of this

    • I have zero sympathy for people involved in the meth trade.

    • Dave

      so a question to you SNAFU, if one of your relatives or friends died as a result of taking drugs that this man trafficked into the country, would you still say, its okay, we should let him off, and have a heart?

      FYI, I know quite a few DeMalmanches from years back, some were close friends, but a drug mule is still a drug mule, even if conned into it. or do we let all criminals off, if they were conned into their crime, where is the line drawn?

  • Saggy

    I hope they take his condition into consideration and are lenient. He has been incredibly stupid and obviously let his heart rule his head and ignored sound advice. But this guy doesn’t deserve to die for his actions. (Assuming all we’re told is true).

  • Betty Swallocks

    In shock at the loss of his son? Chronically depressed? Doesn’t seem to have affected his libido to the extent where he couldn’t be bothered heading to Bali via HK to get his leg over, does it?

    Really Mr Tuck, defend your client by all means but try not to present pathetic fiction like this as evidence of his innocence. It makes both of you look stupid.

  • oldmanNZ

    A paid trip to bali to meet and marry his dream girl… What has he got to loose….
    Sounds too good to be true, like winning lotto.

    Until reality hits home, ive been duped by women. Yes, women make you do stupid things. I knew i was beng duped, but hoped i was not.

    Lesson learnt. The world can be unkind.

  • And at 52 and from Wanganui the chances he didn’t know that meth was illegal would be zero to none.

  • munzrat

    come on its Christmas ….. dumb arse shouldnt mean dead arse . Save the vitriol for the really bad guys …

    • Drug dealers are bad guys

    • Hard1

      Let’s say he gets off. Does he learn his lesson, or do it again. Form so far would indicate that he can read, write, use a computer and has very little common sense, so I would say he could do it again.

      • Rick H

        I would bet everything I own that he is now wishing he just stayed at home and went out fishing in his boat – as was his passion – if his facebook pages are anything to go by.

  • Blue Tim

    Oh cry me a river. Drug mule caught red handed. No sympathy for him

  • Wheninrome

    Give a little coming his way shortly.

    • Carl

      I think the family started one when he was first arrested.

      • Wheninrome

        Of course they did.

    • Hard1

      Malmanche had 34,000 individual 50mg doses. He’ll probably raise about $34,000. on givealittle, $1 for each potential customer. Kind of ironic.

  • Eiselmann

    At some point he made a choice , its difficult to have sympathy for the guy…ask yourself this…if your child came back from Bali having partaken of their first drug and over the course of the next year that child , who had the world at their feet descends into a drug fuelled hell , then police track down the courier , who turns out to be a lonely man with a sad childhood. Would you want him off the hook because of his sob story?…or would you wish they had caught him before your kid took his first drug?

  • Jaffa

    If you are dumb, and we are all dumb about some things, we seek advice from people smarter, or more knowledgeable than ourselves, and we listen to that advice.
    That’s why there are lawyers, and accountants etc.
    If you are too dumb to do that, good luck, you will need it!

  • garryb

    who is paying for his lawyer to be with him, ?? he is not the divey ,that he is trying to make out, saw the bucks got caught, do the crime old boy do the time.

  • timemagazine

    They are trying now to empathise with a drug trafficker ? How much lower can this paper sinck?

  • Aucky

    You could see this scenario playing as plain as day. I said yesterday that the Herald has been dying to create a Schapelle Corby case Kiwi-style, they tried unsuccessfully with Ormsby and now they’ve cracked it. I wouldn’t mind betting that there’s a deal done re legal fees in exchange for an ‘exclusive’ story. I don’t resent De Malmanche getting the best possible defence but I detest the cynicism with which the Herald is trying to create a local hero in order to sell their paper.

  • nervus

    If he is to be hanged it should happen in Wanganui to set an example to others here.

  • Warren Murray

    Does he have ‘form’?

  • Korau
  • Cadwallader

    Why? How will Tuck derive a fee from this? Legal aid? No! From his family? No! Tell me please.

    • BlitzkriegNZ

      Recognition and fame may bring in more clients. I’ve had far too much sun to think throngs through today.

  • hbboy

    This is a two word situation – who cares?

  • JC

    Couple of things.. this is a story of two parts.. the crime itself and secondly the punishment.

    If there’s no argument about the crime , and it appears there’s none, then all the hooha is about the punishment and thats something that it determined by culture and the effect on innocents.

    100-200 years ago most people understood the effects of alcohol on indigenous peoples in Canada, the US, Oz, NZ and elsewhere.. they understood that death and destruction followed when drunk natives got fired up and they punished the sellers of alcohol pretty severely.

    In our time the natives in Muslim countries and other Asian countries face the same peril from drugs as faced by Indians, Maori, Abos etc from alcohol and so we should not expect any better treatment for todays’dealers as way back when. Indeed, with the benefit of seeing what has happened to Western colony natives Asian authorities *should* take a harder line against dealers.

    Go lenient on useful idiots like de Malmanche and you’ll get a flood of idiots running drugs in Asia.


  • damm good thrashing

    de Malmanche is an idiot but he’s over there so I don’t care.