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Is this a repeat of Ryder?

Tony Ryall National Police Spokesman

4 June 2003

Is this a repeat of Ryder?

National wants to know just what action the Justice Minister had taken over the Palmerston North paedophile case - before it hit the headlines this week.

"It's becoming increasingly clear that despite making noises about this case, Phil Goff had made no inquiries prior to the media coverage of it," says National's Police spokesman, Tony Ryall.

"When the Barry Ryder case made news in mid-January, Mr Goff claimed he knew nothing of the release, the release conditions or protective services for Ryder. The case of the Palmerston North paedophile was raised at that time.

"Yesterday the Minister admitted he hadn't seen the release conditions for the Palmerston North man, although these were set some weeks ago.

"Today, Ministers are meeting with Corrections Department officials to discuss the man's rehabilitation. Social Services Minister, Steve Maharey, is promising to bring social service agencies together to discuss the man's care and protection.

"This should have been done weeks ago. All these meetings are just an attempt by these Ministers to spin their way out of inaction.

"It mustn't be forgotten that Phil Goff has taken a personal interest in this case since he rode it to media prominence in the mid 1990's. What has he done about it since then? Why hasn't he asked the basic questions we listed yesterday?

"The rush to appear to be acting on public concern is coming dangerously late. There is every risk that this will be a repeat of Barry Ryder," says Mr Ryall.


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