Dover Samuels x 2 – Mark Todd – Army Major Arrested For Desertion – Cocaine Sally – Dover Truck Deaths- Team NZ Defections
DOVER SAMUELS: The Minister for Maori Affairs Dover Samuels is tonight being investigated by police. Samuels stares down his accuser Richard Prebble in the house. He also “absolutely denies” the allegations made against him. Nobody would reveal details of the allegations in Parliament today. The acting Minister of Maori Affairs is Parekura Horomia. The PM later admitted discussing the allegations with Samuels in January. He assured me that they were not true. ACT has spoken to the woman in the case and is helping her with legal counsel. John Tamihere and Winston Peters say they do not like the tactics used by ACT.
DOVER SAMUELS: Dover Samuels has been considered a weak spot in the Government since his appointment. In his youth he was caned for speaking Maori. Samuels spent time in the Air Force and in Australia as an entertainer. In 1996 he entered Parliament as number 2 on the list. Samuels has provided plenty of nervous moments in the house. He has been at odds with the Government over Maori TV and spectrum.
MARK TODD: Olympic Equestrian Mark Todd says he has been advised by his lawyers not to make any comment on allegations against him. He has however said that he wants himself and his family to be left alone and has thanked messages of support.
ARMY MAJOR DESERTS? This afternoon an Army Major was arrested in Willis Street for desertion. He has served in Bosnia, South Africa and elsewhere. Major Pedro Van-der-ent filed his resignation in March. It was accepted but then the acceptance was reversed. The army wants him to stay with the army until charges have been investigated. Military Police have staked out his house for a week. Military chiefs would not comment today saying the matter was sub-judicae.
COCAINE SALLY: A house is for sale in Gisborne of a 61 year old NZer and Salvation Army band member arrested in Peru with six kilograms of cocaine. The family say it is inconceivable that Robert Stewart was a drug courier. The family are concerned about his safety in Peruvian jails. The house is expected to be sold for around $200,000 which may be used for his defence.
TRUCK DEATHS: The group of immigrants who were found dead in a truck at Dover may be an identical group who were earlier arrested and deported from Belgium.
TEAM NZ DEFECTIONS: Seven members of Team NZ have joined the One World - Seattle based – Americas Cup challenger camp. Today they spoke out about their challenge. Australian Peter Gilmore will lead the challenge – seven members of Team NZ are going to the group too including designer Laurie Davidson. The One World challenge is being financed by Seattle based billionaire Craig McCaw. He says he wants to use the challenge to promote the challenges faced by the environment.