Lake Horowhenua Activist Philip Dean Taueki Badly Assaulted In Prison
By Alastair Thompson
Lake Horowhenua activist Philip Dean Taueki has been viciously assaulted in prison.
Scoop this morning received the following affidavit filed in support of a bail variation and note from his partner, investigative journalist Anne Hunt.
Philip Taueki has been battling against the Horowhenua District Council over the management of Lake Horowhenua, which is toxic and subjected to un-consented discharges of sewage and storm water.
For additional background on this case see this 2012 report from Scoop Editor Alastair Thompson. Activist On Run After Lake Horowhena Toilet Photo Incident.
Note from Anne Hunt concerning Phillip Taueki's latest court appearance:
The face of this year's Canon awards was yesterday remanded in custody after appearing before a Judge whose all three convictions had been successfully appealed.
Those of us in the courtroom saw a man who has been badly assaulted, is suffering from dizzy spells and blurred vision, has a badly swollen leg and who has lost eight teeth and is losing weight badly.
We believe he is suffering from mild concussion from this attack and this will have been compounded by the concussion he suffered in August 2008 when the sailors attacked him, on 20 July 2013 when the rowers attacked him, and on 17 October when Michael Fryer went out to his sister's place and attacked them both. And of course he was injured when Sandra Williams went for him with a wooden scooter only a few weeks ago. That complaint has yet to be investigated.
Even though he prefers to remain a self-litigant, he had no access to a pen, until a guard took pity on him and gave him his.
After he had recorded notes on the three small sheets of paper he was allocated and scribbled on the back of every notice he could get his hands on, he bartered that pen for some noodles.
He did not appear in court until 5pm, and was denied even the dignity of toilet paper.
- Anne Hunt 9 May 2014
DISTRICT COURT OF NEW ZEALAND
: The New Zealand
And: Philip Dean Taueki
Urgent application for variation of bail conditions due to injury in custody
7 May 2014
c/ 17 Nash Parade
MAY IT PLEASE THE
1. I, Philip Deane Taueki as an unrepresented party am hereby seeking an urgent variation of my bail conditions due to the injuries I sustained as the result of an assault while on remand in custody at Manawatu Prison. It was only due to the intervention of prison guards that I avoided being seriously maimed or even crippled.
2. As a result of this assault by an inmate on Wednesday 30 April, I have lost eight teeth, my vision is only just clearing after being blurred for a number of days, I have facial lacerations and my leg remains swollen and purple after the offender whacked my calf. It is double the size of my other leg. I suffer from osteoarthritis in my knees, and although I am now in constant pain, I have not been prescribed painkillers.
3. I am on remand, and have not been convicted of a single offence to warrant imprisonment.
4. Even when this latest barrage of charges has been thrown out, no Judge will ever be capable of restoring the teeth I have lost, rectify impaired vision or compensate for reduced mobility.
5. “Legally, Corrections has a duty of care to all prisoners, which they take very seriously”, a spokesperson for Corrections Minister Anne Tolley assured readers of this morning’s Dominion Post. I have no reason to feel safe while in custody.
6. Corrections and to a lesser extent, this Court and the NZ Police Force has failed to provide me the level of protection I am entitled to receive while on remand in custody.
7. Meanwhile the NZ Police Force has failed to investigate my own complaint of assault against the complainant and her husband, who came onto the property where I was working.
8. As the legal owner of this Kemp Street property, I am entitled to rely on a defence of both self-defence and peaceable possession; the right to use reasonable force to remove them.
9. On 15 April the defendant was remanded in custody on a total of ten charges, after being arrested in the Levin District Court upon appearance for a case review of two remaining charges.
10. It was not until I appeared in court during the afternoon session that I discovered I was facing ten new charges.
11. Although a self-represented litigant, my pre-trial application was removed from me while I was detained in police custody.
12. I will be entering a plea of ‘not guilty’.
13. This Court is already well aware of the poor batting record of the Horowhenua Police Force. Consideration of just cause for continued detention should evaluate the strength of the evidence and the probability of conviction or otherwise.
14. In these unique circumstances, this Court should also consider the motivation behind these latest charges that are the result of investigations by Constable Lionel Currie and Sergeant Marty Bull. The summary of facts that I have finally viewed, are as usual a distorted representation of the situation to cast me in the worst possible light in order to oppose bail, so that they can disrupt my lifestyle and leave me seriously penalised while awaiting the opportunity to prove my innocence.
15. Bail conditions are usually so stringent that I can be arrested and led away in handcuffs even while attending the Foxton RSA during a medal ceremony for veterans on Armistice Day.
16. I can be arrested if I yell at the rowers who deliberately cross the Domain boundary onto land that is waahi tapu to launch their boats, or defecate in the bushes due to a lack of toilets.
17. When the NZ Police continue to make claims that Lake Horowhenua is a community asset and that members of the public are entitled to use the lake for recreational purposes, they still don’t grasp the point that this lake is privately-owned and nobody can access the lake without crossing Maori Freehold Land that we have neither sold nor leased to the Crown. Access is subject to compliance with the by-laws.
18. When I was arrested by the Police on charges of obstruction and resistance after I had parked my truck lawfully on my own land in a futile attempt to prevent Horizons and NIWA launching unwashed motorised boats on the lake, Police Area Commander Pat Handcock referred this matter to the IPCA. N Both charges were dropped, but not until after I had wasted more time in custody and spent a morning in court waiting for my name to be called to enter a plea on these charges.
19. The NZ Police have failed to secure a prosecution on 19 charges since an incident on 5 October 2011. No apology!
20. This number of 19 charges was the threshold for Vince Seimer to be declared a vexatious litigant in the High Court last week.
21. Relying purely on internal advice, the NZ Police have decided that if I enter my own building, I am there unlawfully.
22. When I refer to the Court of Appeal judgement or Crown Law’s submission, the usual response from the Police when they arrest me is that ‘it is over their heads’.
23. I was not arrested on the night of the 28th March, as I was able to phone Anne Hunt to let her know what was happening while Police Officers Nathan Dally and Daly Johns were outside consulting Marty Bull on what to do. Only two days earlier, I had warned Inspector Waata Shepherd from Police National Headquarters that I am fed up with spending time in police custody whenever the police want to stop me doing something that upsets their mates in the rowing club.
24. I would have imagined that police officers have a duty to familiarise themselves with the law and the findings of superior courts. They cite the Maori Land Court as their authority, despite an appeal to the Maori Appellate Court.
25. So we have this bizarre situation whereby the police have agreed that they will arrest me if I enter a building I own to store lake restoration equipment that the owners have purchased from our own resources, but the police will provide protection for the rowers to break into a building they neither own nor lease to toss this gear outside. The police will then arrange for a 24-hour scene guard to summon assistance to arrest any owner who dares enter our own building!
26. It is no wonder that the NZ Police Force have difficulties substantiating their charges because they don’t know the law.
27. Because the police thought they could arrest me for being unlawfully in my own building, the police still fail to accept that owners have the right to free and unrestricted use of our own property; a right which Cooke J said may well be unique.
28. When it comes to trespass, their failure rate is 100%. One was tossed out while I was still cross-examining the first witness. For the second, we didn’t even bother to remain in the courtroom after the Judge granted us leave to leave.
29. Under the Crimes Act, an unlawful act means a breach of any act, regulation, rule or by-law. The only person prepared to enforce the by-laws is me, yet I’m the one who gets arrested.
30. The only conviction since 1 October 2011 related to an incident on 9 October 2011 when a District Court Judge was adamant that it didn’t matter whether Constable Tate was a mass murderer or broke every law in the land, it was irrelevant to the charges I faced. Upon appeal, he was over-ruled in the High Court by Justice Kos who stated that:
The event had not been organised lawfully. He was, as his counsel Mr Price put it, right about that. There was no permit for the assembly or event. And there was no permit for the motorised craft on the lake. Each permit should have been obtained.
To make matters worse, the organiser of the event was a constable.
31. Unfortunately, due to the constant intervention of the District Court Judge. I was unable to point out that the police officer who had organised this unlawful event had also been an investigating officer who gave evidence in uniform.
32. Only two days later, Justice Mackenzie quashed two convictions in relation to an incident when an off-duty police officer had been rowing on the lake with the complainant. This police officer was the complainant and officer in charge for a third charge and also the officer in charge and sole witness for a fourth charge; both of which had already been dismissed by a District Court Judge.
12. The matters to which I have referred relate primarily to the 21 August incident. An on-duty officer, Constable Currie was called to the incident on 22 August. The charges in relation to the 21 August incident were dismissed. I consider that the dismissal of these charges does not remove the risk of a miscarriage of justice arsing from the matters to which I have referred. The two incidents were very closely linked and they were dealt with at one hearing. The issue as to the availability of Mr Tate for cross-examination affects the 22 August charges. I consider that there is a substantial risk that the process of justice has miscarried in respect of the entire prosecution. I conclude that the convictions on the 22 August charges cannot be allowed to stand.
33. Six months later, Hon Justice Kos quashed yet another conviction in which the prosecution case was based on testimony from two police officers and one civilian witness.
44. ...Constable Currie testified that Mr Taueki ‘became aggressive with one particular person who was walking up the ramp. He was gesturing at him, ‘Come on then’, and gesturing at him, with his hands to come towards him”. The person, the constable said, was Mr Tukapua. In that case it must have been the incident in the seventh minute, not the 14th. There is no evidence Mr Tukapua was walking up the ramp again just before Mr Taueki was arrested. Yet that was when Sergeant Bull said the gesture came. The video recording does not show such a gesture, whether at the seventh or the 14th minute.
46. With great respect to the trial Judge, I do not consider that there was a sufficient factual foundation for at least the second limb of 3, a finding that Mr Taueki’s behaviour was likely in the circumstances to cause violence against persons or property to start.
47. A conviction on the evidence taken as a whole could not safely be entered.
The appellant has shown that the Court should not have been satisfied beyond reasonable doubt that he was guilty of the offence charged.
34. It should be noted that Constable Currie is the investigating officer for the most serious charges I face, male assault female. I understand that my own complaint relating to this particular incident that I had laid with Constable Charles Rudd had also been passed on to Constable Currie to investigate.
35. It is my understanding that Sergeant Bull is the officer in charge for all remaining charges that I face.
36. Therefore I have no reason to have any confidence whatsoever in the impartiality of police investigations conducted prior to my arrest in this very courtroom on 15 April.
37. On 15 April 2014, I was representing myself as a lay litigant for a case review relating to some serious issues, including the refusal by the NZ Police to obtain Crown Law advice for a review of the two remaining charges following the release of my Supreme Court decision on 17 December 2013. Due to the site of this particular incident, this Supreme Court judgement is directly relevant to these charges.
38. Arriving on time for my court appearance, I was arrested by two police officers and held in custody until my appearance before Judge Lynch at 2.15pm. My pre-trial application was removed from me, even though these complex matters were scheduled to be addressed in court that day.
39. The only duty solicitor for that day was Mr Gimblett.
40. In addition to serving as duty solicitor that day, Mr Gimblett also appeared as counsel for Bryce Williams who is the son of Sandra Williams, the complainant in the charge of male assault female.
41. As Chairman of Hokio A Trust, I had been acting on behalf of the Hokio A Trust to secure property owned by the Trust and that had been vacated by the partner of Mr Williams. Mr Williams had by then been remanded on custody on a charge of assaulting her.
42. The Hokio A Trust had opposed an application for Mr Williams to be bailed to that address in Kemp Street.
43. It is my understanding that Mr Gimblett was acting for Mr Williams throughout the morning session in relation to that bail application.
44. Although Judge Lynch and Mr Gimblett both acknowledged this conflict of interests, it was of sufficient seriousness to prejudice my right to impartial legal advice when a remand in custody was contemplated.
45. Due to his commitment to his client, it was not until I entered the courtroom at 2.15pm that day that I heard for the first time, the charges that I was facing.
46. Lawyers acting on behalf of the Trust have filed an application with the Maori Land Court to resolve issues that have arisen as a direct result of the decisions made by the District Court in relation to the bail application Mr Gimblett filed on behalf of his client, Bryce Williams, and that was heard in this court that morning. As I was being held in custody at the time, I am not privy to the submissions Mr Gimblett made on behalf of his client to secure bail.
47. My remand in custody has therefore seriously prejudiced the Trust that I chair in favour of the client Mr Gimblett represented in Court that morning.
48. That alone should be sufficient grounds to vary the bail conditions imposed upon me when I was deprived of the right to consult an impartial duty solicitor.
The Bail Act 2000
49. Section 8 (1) (a) (i) is quite specific in considering whether there is just cause for detention. The court must, and I stress the word must, take into account whether there is a risk that the defendant may fail to appear in court on the date to which the defendant has been remanded.
50. As Judge Atkins witnessed for himself, previous non-appearances had been due to non-notification by a legal aid lawyer who was dismissed in the Palmerston North District Court and with full endorsement from Judge Atkins.
51. It was my bail officer who alerted me to this appearance that I would have missed if he had not brought it to my attention.
52. I have since made arrangements for court documents to be served on Anne Hunt so that I can be confident they will not go astray and so that she can remind me of my commitments.
53. The NZ Police might cite a few instances to justify their opposition to bail, but the Court needs to bear in mind that my bail conditions have frequently exceeded the parameters of the law. For instance, the police arrested me on a breach of bail while I was attending a private ceremony at the Foxton RSA as a member of that club to honour veterans receiving service medals on Armistice Day. That cannot constitute an offence.
54. Then there is another occasion when I was arrested by the police at 1am and was bailed to live elsewhere, even though I protested at the time that the trespass notice was invalid. Eight weeks later, Judge Dawson tossed out the trespass charge on the grounds that the trespass notice was invalid. In other words, the bail conditions exceeded the purposes of the Bail Act as it was not an offence for me to occupy my own home.
55. As Justice Gendall said when I applied for that bail variation:
7. The power to impose conditions of bail is contained under s31 of the Bail Act 2000. It provides that the District Court if it releases a defendant in bail may impose conditions as to reporting and such other conditions that are reasonable necessary to ensure the defendant appears in Court on the date to which he has been remanded, does not interfere with any witnesses and does not commit any offence whilst on bail. Bail conditions must be logically related to the risk and no more than in reasonably necessary to address this.
56. For far too long, the Police have imposed or sought bail conditions that exceed the provisions of the Bail Act as an excuse to arrest me whenever I encounter people breaching by-laws which is an unlawful act according to the Crimes Act.
57. As Justice Gendall has pointed out, bail conditions must be logically related to the risk and no more than is necessary to address this. It is not an offence to tell people not to break the law, particularly when it places our lake at risk.
58. It is not an offence for instance for me to live in my home down at the lake because s18 of ROLD Act 1956 preserves my right to free and unrestricted use. It is not reasonable for the Lake Domain Board to pass resolutions that are ultra vires the Reserves Act 1977 under which the Domain is gazetted.
59. I am not a flight risk, because I relish the opportunity to appear in court and defend charges laid by the NZ Police.
60. There is no risk that the defendant may interfere with witness or evidence, as the NZ Police have already conducted a thorough search of his property under S6 of the Search and Surveillance Act 2012, and trustees of the Hokio A Trust that I chair have already briefed Trust lawyers to address matters relating to Sandra Williams and her son Bryce.
61. I understand the Maori Land Court has scheduled a hearing later this month to address matters relating to this property.
62. The final grounds for denying bail is the risk a defendant may offend on bail. The NZ Police may lay charges, even charges of a serious nature, but until they are proven in court, a defendant is entitled to a presumption of innocence.
63. This presumption of innocence is particularly relevant when the NZ Police have failed to secure a conviction for the last fifteen charges in succession.
Prejudice to a self-represented
64. In consideration of just cause for continued detention, the Court should take into account the possibility of prejudice to the defence in the preparation of the defence.
65. First, I would like to point out that the only reason I had access to a pen is that a guard had taken pity on me following an assault that should never have happened.
66. Stationery itself is in limited supply.
67. All outgoing phone calls from prisoners are recorded and may be used in evidence against the defendant.
68. When Anne Hunt visited me during the weekend, I was not permitted to take any notes with me.
69. Even though she is my longstanding McKenzie Friend, she was not permitted to bring into the visitors’ room a pen or paper. Nor could she bring with her copies of the law.
70. It was not until 2pm yesterday afternoon that I was able to hold a private conversation with Anne Hunt as my McKenzie Friend, and this was a garbled and rushed volley of information in the hope that she would be able to prepare a submission in readiness for a hearing the next morning. I suspect she would have worked through the night to research previous court judgements, and produce this in time for today.
71. I was unable to provide her with information relating to either the charges or opposition to bail so that she could check the references in order to challenge claims made by the prosecution that I totally refute.
72. Collaboration between Anne Hunt as my McKenzie Friend and me is longstanding, and not just a get-out-of-jail-free card.
73. There are a total of ten charges, some of such severity that the penalty that could be imprisonment for fourteen years.
74. This situation is clearly unsatisfactory.
75. I do not have access to any of my files nor can I uplift the exhibits that I had intended to produce as evidence.
76. I have been advised that some of my property has already been stolen, including the cell phone that I used to record evidential photographs and video footage.
77. The minimum standards of criminal procedure include the right to a fair hearing, the right to be presumed innocent until proved guilty according to law and the right to present a defence. All these minimum rights enshrined will be denied me if I remain remanded in custody. The Bill of Rights Act is no discretionary. It is mandatory.
78. Finally, a remand in custody will exacerbate serious prejudice on a number of fronts.
79. Financially, the loss of income over a three week period has caused hardship and inconvenience as all my automatic payments are defaulted upon, incurring additional costs to reinstate utilities such as power and phone.
80. The lake restoration programme has had a major setback and it is now unlikely that the lake will now be sufficiently clean for next year’s commemorative swim to honour Lord Freyberg who trained in the lake before heading off to Gallipoli for his heroic swim.
81. Timber and other items purchased by the Lake Restoration Joint Working Party chaired by Whatarangi Winiata have been stolen from my property and of course there is the loss of the trailer which I had purchased in good faith to transport the pump purchased to remove the sediment from the lake bed.
82. All these items have been stored outside, because the NZ Police hold the view that the rowers have more right to store obsolete equipment in a building they neither own nor lease, than the owners have to store lake restoration equipment purchased from our own resources to clean up a lake that is in this state due to the refusal by the Lake Domain Board to enforce by-laws approved by the Minister of Conservation.
83. During my absence from the lake, there will have been other motorised boats launched on the lake, increasing the risk that an invasive weed has already been introduced onto the lake, causing irreversible damage. This is despite the stance taken by Area Commander Pat Handcock that there must be environmental compliance. If just one of these weeds has entered the lake in my absence, the weed mat will render the lake unsuitable for any boating in the future.
84. Yet again, the NZ Police have demonstrated that recreational activities by those accessing the lake free of charge take precedence over the rights of owners to protect this privately-owned ancestral land of great cultural significance from further degradation and desecration.
85. Plans to upgrade the housing stock and utilities at Hokio Beach have taken a back seat while I have been unable to progress this development. Delays arranging for our forestry to be harvested will reduce our income this year considerably.
86. But most importantly, Mua-Upoko is moving into the most crucial phase of its history, when those of us who have mana over the whenua have just one chance to salvage our proud heritage and our legacy from those who will, and have, stolen it from us. If we fail, our claim is forever extinguished.
87. Genocide; that’s what happened to Mua-Upoko when the English supplied muskets to Te Rauparaha and Ngati Toa to wipe us out and seize our lands for settlement and a railway.
88. To finance a Commission of Inquiry, the Government confiscated 13,000 acres of forestry in the Tararua Ranges.
89. Those who fled the wrath of Te Rauparaha, the torture, the cannibalism were the very same people who were prepared to swoop into the district and lie on oath in court to claim our lands, land that belonged only to those who preserved ahi kaa despite knowing what their fate if captured. By the 1890’s, there were only 76 Mua-Upoko survivors.
90. As kupapa, the MTA has stolen our right to negotiate a settlement based on our grievances and is insisting upon going to direct negotiation, avoiding the very hearings that would expose their deceit. By granting the MTA the mandate based on 10% support and flawed whakapapa, the Crown will be able to extinguish 29 legitimate claims and all that means to us, those whose ancestors suffered, suffered more deeply even than the Jews. Our ancestors faced cannibalism, not just for those who died in battle but those who were captured, those who were herded like sheep to be killed off one by one as fresh meat to feed their enemy. Taueki as the ariki of Mua-Upoko would have been singled out for excruciating torture.
91. My father bestowed upon me, even though I am one of the younger members of a large family, the mantle of leadership, and it is my responsibility, nay my duty to stand up to those, those kupapa, those imposters who stole our lands, our history and our mana.
92. Just as these kupapa lied on oath in court to steal our lands, our forests, our lake, and our mana; this Government is compounding our grievance by allowing them to steal our Treaty settlement as well. I am Mua-Upoko’s strongest advocate, and my people are relying on me to stand up for them.
93. Having recently received evidence that the Crown has been negotiating unbeknown to us for a decade or more with MTA behind our back, this is eleventh hour stuff, with urgent hearings before Judge Fox, Sir Tamata Reedy and Sir Doug Kidd in a desperate bid to prevent history repeating itself.
94. In terms of the Horowhenua Block, we are talking of a grievance valued at a billion dollars by the local council’s calculations. One billion dollars!
95. We retain ownership of the lake in title but after last year’s Supreme Court mess and the attitude of the local constabulary, all that means is our name on a tatty piece of paper.
96. Nevertheless there are some nuggets in there. Yet the police obstinately cling to internal legal advice rather than seek guidance from Crown Law on matters that have been settled by the Court of Appeal and Supreme Court. Whenever I wave these judgements under their nose, the police are consistent in their response. They have probably been taught them back at the station. Tell Phil, ‘it is over my head’. Ignorance of the law as explained in simple language by these superior courts is not good enough when they deprive me of my liberty and besmirch my reputation.
97. As Judge Lynch said in his minute: “While the police may consider that the Supreme Court decision cements their decision to prosecute, that is not the end of the matter. The prospects of proving these charges beyond a reasonable doubt, particularly given the difficulties the police have experienced to date in this prosecution against Mr Taueki and the public interest in proceeding with these (remaining) charges after all this time, now needs to be properly considered. That is of course the function of the prosecutor not the court”.
98. But the police prefer to keep at least one charge live at all times. That means that I remain permanently on bail so that if I so much as sneeze, they can jump out of the bushes and accusing me of breaching it. To be arrested on Armistice Day, in the Foxton RSA for talking to my cousin Rita is the height of the abuse of freedoms our veterans fought and died to defend. Yet is is abused by the police in the very premises where these rights should be respected.
99. According to the internal advice of the police, the owners don’t even have the same rights as the rowers. The police will watch benevolently nearby while the rowers break into the building we own and toss out the lake restoration gear that is vital to save our lake that is dying. But when we do essentially the same thing, to toss out the junk they have left there, we , the owners are breaking the law. That’s why I am in court here today, that’s why I’m no longer prepared to sit around and be arrested and handcuffed and be told by the police I cannot live in my own home, cannot protect my lake, cannot stop people putting dirty boats on our lake that will kill it.
100. Due to these lies told in the Native Land Court, the Crown has been able to steal our lands, our lake and now they are resorting to the same tactics to steal my freedom as well.
101. As Anne has told Pat Handcock, the police are using those with an ulterior motive to stick the boot into me so that they have the excuse they need to steal my freedom, to silence me.
102. I am a political prisoner.
103. The human rights lawyer who is taking my documents off-shore to the United Nations, was the first to describe me as that.
104. I am no fool. For ten years I worked in London as an accountant with as many as 200 staff under me, lived prosperously in the suburb of SW1, managed a pub that became a watering-hole of choice for ex-pats.
105. Why would I come back to this country, to live in what many people could call a hovel, scarcely able to feed myself and my loyal companions, my elderly dogs knowing that for me, a good day is one where I am not arrested, not assaulted, not pilloried in the media? I get arrested for being assaulted, how bizarre is that? The charge is disorderly behaviour inciting violence, and the blood congealing in my hear is evidence to prove that charge.
106. I came back here because my ancestors called to me, they told me our lake is dying and we need you to save it. You might not understand that, but it is as real to me as the resurrection is to Christians.
107. I will say to you the same thing your honour that I told Judge Fox, Sir Tamati Reedy and Sir Doug Kidd, that history is repeating itself. The courts are prepared to listen to the lies, told on oath, to steal that which is precious to us, in my case, my very freedom.
108. I value my freedom not because I want to walk down the street or go down to the RSA to play a game of pool with Bryan. I value my freedom only because Mua-Upoko needs me, my lake needs me.
109. This, what is going on in this very courtroom this very day, is part of a history that will bring shame upon this country.
110. It will bring shame on this country that prides itself on race relations, prides itself on the integrity of the police force, prides itself on our clean green image – and yes, our lake is green, green with algae and pollution.
111. This day will be written about in history books.
112. In considering whether there is just cause for continued detention, this court has the discretion to take into consideration
(a) The nature of the offence for which the defendant is charged and whether it is a grave or less serious one of its kind
(b) The strength of evidence and the probability of conviction or otherwise
(g) The possibility of prejudice to the defence in the preparation of the defence if the defendant is remanded in custody.
113. Can I add to that list, one other thing that is vitally important, because it is upon the foundation of our Treaty that this court has any jurisdiction at all.
114. I am here as a a Treaty partner, a Treaty partner who is less than impressed with the judgement of those who sit on the bench in the highest court in the land, the Supreme Court.
115. They never even mentioned the Treaty, not once.
116. But I will mention the Treaty, because I know very well the reason people have accused me of things I have not done. The police know as well as I do, that when I appear before the court on these latest ten charges and the remaining two, they do not have the evidence to secure a conviction.
117. But that’s not what’s at stake here.
118. The person who accuses me of assaulting her, her daughter is the chair of the MTA and a Treaty negotiator. Her son-in-law is MTA’s lawyer and is a Treaty negotiator. Another Treaty negotiator is Doctor Procter who made arrangements for me to be locked up in police cells for 24 hours, who set me up on a false accusation of assault. That is their modus operandi when important hearings are scheduled as they were then, and as they are now. My innocence was viewed by the Judge on video footage taken just outside the doors here. But, and this is all on record in the transcripts, the police opposed bail. And so I was compelled to make a false confession in order to get out on bail so that I could attend an important judicial conference of the Waitangi Tribunal and the two-day hearing of the Maori Land Court that had been four years in gestation.
119. Is this what we have come to in our society? That I am compelled to lie and confess to things I have not done just so that I can get out of prison so I can speak on behalf of my tribe, the people who are the descendents of those who deserved better from the Crown.
120. The Crown wields the weapon of law far more effectively than the weapons of war Te Rauparaha used.
Serious prejudice indeed
121. A further remand in custody will deprive me of my right as a Treaty partner to participate in Treaty settlement negotiations which are at a crucial phase with comprehensive research documents released a fortnight ago that I have not even seen, let alone read.
122. A further remand in custody will deprive me of my right as the Chair of the Hokio A Trust to attend a Maori Land Court hearing scheduled to take place on the 22nd of this month and give evidence in relation to a property in Kemp Street about matters resolved by the Trust last June.
123. A further remand in custody will deprive me of my right to appear as the leading applicant in a civil claim that is due to be heard in the Wellington High Court against the Horowhenua District Council on the grounds that the local authority has unlawfully discharged Levin’s stormwater into the privately-owned Lake Horowhenua, creating a nuisance for more than 40 years.
124. I also need to meet with Whatarangi Winiata as soon as possible to decide what can be done to protect our lake restoration gear as the police obviously refuse to let owners store their own gear in their own buildings on their own land. Material we had purchased, such as timber to repair the Block building has already gone missing from the lake site, whilst stored outside because the police are even prepared to arrange for a 24 hour scene guard rather than let us store it in our own building.
125. From Sunday 23 March until Tuesday 25 March, when Inspector Shepherd arrived to stand them down, a police car was parked down at the lake watching me day and night.
Recording of proceedings
126. Finally I would like to place on record that I did not oppose the application by Martin Cleave to record proceedings in the Levin District Court on 7 May 2014 and 7 July 2014, and in fact welcomed it.
127. I have been told that the reason the application to record was declined is because the court does not consider me to be a ‘shrinking violet’. That should not be justification to deny me my right to the process of open justice affirmed by the Court of Appeal in what has been hailed as a landmark decision.
128. As the Court of Appeal affirmed in this landmark decision delivered by Justice Grant Hammond:
98. What may be written about is both innocence and guilt, or for that matter the ‘unproven’ cases in our courts. This may well be uncomfortable for one party or another, but it is part of the process of open justice and even wider considerations of freedom of expression.
129. Accordingly, I have served copies of this pre-trial submission on the media as well as the Court and the Police Prosecutor. Anne Hunt’s Court of Appeal judgement recognises the right of this documentary production company to receive and report on the contents of this submission.
130. The NZ Police have already done much to prejudice my right to a fair hearing by vilifying me in the mainstream media with statements that I know to be untrue, but cannot refute until my innocence is established once their charges are subjected to the scrutiny of a Judge, and perhaps jury.
131. I would remind this case of the contempt of court proceedings that Dr David Collins QC as Solicitor-General brought against the Dominion Post following their coverage of the Urewera Terrorism Raids. International experts were brought in to examine the impact of adverse media coverage prior to a jury trial.
Proposed bail conditions
132. In conclusion, I would reiterate the comments made by Justice Gendall in response to an application for a bail variation while awaiting trial on a charge that was dismissed: Bail conditions must be logically related to the risk and no more than is reasonably necessary to address this.
133. The Maori Land Court and the Waitangi Tribunal have been notified of recent events, and have been asked to put in place security arrangements to protect me as much as anybody else. The Maori Land Court is aware that Vivienne Taueki has sought a review of the assault charges she had laid against Sandra William at the AGM of the MTA. After Sandra Williams claimed that she was the custodian of this marae, the Police arrested Vivienne for trespass and escorted her down to the Levin Police Station. Security guards at the Waitangi Tribunal Conference were on full alert after Anne Hunt and Bryan Ten Have reported being assaulted by Sandra Williams during a luncheon adjournment and also a morning session.
134. I make no apologies for my inability to serve this lengthy submission on the court within the usual time frame, but my remand in custody has already exposed the difficulties mounting my defence while on remand in custody.
135. I am grateful for the prison guard who lent me a pen.
136. Nor am I prepared to make any apologies for any errors that might have slipped through. I was unable to make arrangements to be able to phone Anne Hunt until 2pm yesterday, and even then, the call was limited to the very brief time allocated by Corrections. There was no time for me to be able to pause or let Anne Hunt clarify any matter I raised.
137. Visiting conditions for last Sunday’s visit precluded me from taking the notes I had jotted down with me, or for her to bring into the visitor’s room even a pencil and paper.
138. Yet upon this submission, rests consideration of just cause for continued detention.
139. Due to the injuries already sustained following a serious assault while remanded in custody and due to the further risks to my personal safety; due to the failure by the police to secure a conviction on any of the last fifteen charges I have faced; due to the presumption of innocence until proved guilty according to law and due to the nature of the alleged offence being, as the court has already conceded, a less serious one of its kind, I am asking to be remanded at large, subject to the following conditions:
a) To attend personally at the District Court at Levin at every time and place to which the hearing may from time to time adjourned.
b) To report to the District Court at Levin every Monday and Friday.
c) To live at the address of 17 Nash Parade Foxton Beach
d) To notify the District Court at Levin of any change to my bail address necessitated by a change in circumstances
e) Not to contact Sandra Williams or any other witness directly or indirectly
f) Not to attend any tribal activity unless accompanied by a lawyer, Vivienne Taueki or Anne Hunt, and to notify the court registrar or convenor to put in place security arrangements at least 48 hours in advance of this activity taking place
Dated at Levin this 7th day of May 2014
(for the Defence)
Levin District Court
Police Prosecution Service