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Response to National Party’s Law and Order Document

27 NOVEMBER 2019

President Waikato Mongrel Mob Kingdom Chapter - Sonny Fatupaito - Response to National Party’s Law and Order Discussion Document

It comes as no surprise to the President of the Waikato Mongrel Mob Kingdom Chapter Sonny Fatupaito with the release of the National Party’s punitive Law and Order Discussion Document and proposal of a new police unit to harass and interfere with gang activity on a daily basis.

The discussion document announced by National Party leader Simon Bridges is just a continuation of the same policies that have failed miserably and terrorised Maori communities deplorably for generations. The police unit National has highlighted as an example is modelled on ‘Strike Force Raptor’, which has been operating in New South Wales since 2009. Data highlights since the ‘Raptors’ were established Australian gang numbers continued to increase in the three-year period between 2012 and 2015, with gang numbers still up by 34 percent.

This has been further highlighted by Radio New Zealand’s Morning Report broadcaster Corin Dann who pressured Simon Bridges repeatedly for evidence as to whether the ‘Strike Force Raptor’ in NSW was working to subdue gangs, Bridges could not offer any evidence. Dann went on to discuss that the Australian Ombudsman was quoted as reporting the Strike Force Raptor Units disproportionately target non-gang citizens and Aboriginal citizens.

It is of concern to the Waikato Mongrel Mob Kingdom that the trend will follow the creation of such a ‘raptor unit’ here in Aotearoa, New Zealand. on-bridges-defends-gang-proposals

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Fatupaito predicted in December 2018, “I know that they (the government) will probably adapt some of these laws that they’ve got going on over in Australia to try and combat these gangs that are coming over with their international networks.” With over 30 years’ hands-on experience in the gang world, Fatupaito warned that New Zealand would witness organised crime and gang violence on a level that they had never seen before, “worst case scenario, a lot of trouble. A lot”.

This was as a result of expats (501s) being deported back to New Zealand including patched members of outlaw motorcycle clubs such as the Rebels, Comancheros, Mongols, Lone Wolves, Finks and the Bandidos to name a few, which concerned him.

National’s Law and Order Discussion Document is simply just regurgitating policies of yesteryear. Mr Bridges ‘dog whistle’ politics are great at playing on people’s fears and anxieties but not so good at solving any problems. Bridges seeks to blame instead of seeking to understand. What is clear and what politicians need to quickly come to understand, is that we won’t address societal problems unless we understand the political and social drivers that shape our lives and our communities.

Fatupaito says that Simon Bridges’ drive to create a boogieman out of the so-called gang problem is nothing more than politicking for votes. The Kingdom understands that the best agents of change are those who have navigated and overcome the many adversities they have endured throughout their lifetimes.

We are the most discriminated, marginalised community of people. This intended strategy is a policy with the direct intent to further discriminate against our families and loved ones. Not every gang member is a criminal and not every criminal is a gang member, yet Bridges approach puts us all into the category that we are all criminals. As Fatupaito has written, gangs have their own whakapapa and origins, which are rooted deep within the injustices to Māori by way of imperialism, colonisation, assimilation, racism, economic deprivation along with the commodification of our resources and our people. The impact of colonisation is now having intergenerational effects, which have torn Whānau, Hapu and Iwi apart.

If any decent political party was serious about tackling gang issues, they would first tackle and eliminate poverty. Therefore, how can any decent minded citizen of Aotearoa New Zealand take Simon Bridges’ rhetoric seriously. The Kingdom itself was birthed out of the ashes of poverty. Poverty is a social construct stemming from legislative policies that continue to undermine minority cultures who are disenfranchised.

Bridges ‘tough on crime’ agenda does nothing more than widen the gap between different sectors of society, and Bridges former leader and Prime Minister Sir Bill English, is renowned for announcing his Government’s moral and fiscal failure - Prisons. So too is this narrative surrounding gangs being violent thugs that the government and media would have us believe, we are simply just pawns in their bigger political game.

At a gang hui late in 2018, Fatupaito made a bold proposal to traditional rivals Black Power to collaborate against international gangs. It was the death of Mongrel Mob

member Kevin Ratana (Kastro) in Whanganui in August 2018 that brought the two warring factions together at this time. The leaders said they were done with violence.

“What came from Kastro’s death was the understanding as Rangatira’s we can only judge the future from what we’ve suffered in the past, but we must persevere as one people or we will perish clinging onto our own self interests.”

The meeting initiated by the Waikato Mongrel Mob Kingdom in Kirikiriroa, Hamilton saw Black Power - including prominent leaders Denis O'Reilly, Eugene Ryder and Sarge McKinnon, contemplated Ratana's killing and how to formulate a way forward. It was there that the Kingdom, led by Fatupaito, discussed the influx of Australian gangs and its effects. Fatupaito argued that the time for change was now, as overseas gangs attempted a modern-day land grab and foreseeing international gangs bringing international laws.

The National Party’s proposed policy from Fatupaito’s understanding would be in direct conflict with the NZ Bill of Rights Act 1990 and a breach under Te Tiriti o Waitangi, Article Two, the protection of Taonga where Maori as a people, as Tangata Whenua are at the heart of this Article. We as human beings are the greatest of all Taonga and need to be protected, yet Simon Bridges chooses to further racially profile, terrorise, cause misery and attack a certain group within our communities.

When questioned whether gang members had the same human rights as fellow citizens in Aotearoa, as much as Bridges obfuscates he admits gang members do have the same fundamental rights as any other fellow citizen - life and security rights, democratic and civil rights, non-discrimination and minority rights, search, arrest and detention rights, criminal procedure rights and justice rights.

We will continue to invite the likes of Mr Bridges et al to come and sit with us to witness for himself first-hand what the Waikato Mongrel Mob Kingdom has achieved in a short time. This is despite decades of being ignored by those empowered to assist the disenfranchised and ostracised.

Fatupaito says the Kingdom will continue doing what it started in 2013. This is no PR stunt as with Simon Bridges’ latest vote pulling escapade. We will continue to educate, empower and enable our Whānau to lead more productive, constructive, positive and healthier lifestyles.

We will continue to extend the hand of manaakitanga and aroha to one and all who wish to be part of our programmes. This is indeed a true Turn of the Tide, Te Huringa o Te Tai.


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