Home' Greymouth Star : December 4th 2014 Contents Dunedin
New information has come to light in the
Lisa Blakie murder case.
Information on the death of the Timaru
woman, who was murdered in 2000, has
been handed to police this week, following
a television programme on the case that
aired last year, and through the work of two
Her strangled body was discovered in the
Porter River on Waitangi Day 2000 but it
was more than two years before Timothy
Taylor was found guilty of her murder.
Timaru community newspaper The
Courier has revealed police have “several
months” of work ahead of them to check
new statements against the investigation.
It is understood Taylor’s lawyer, Pip Hall,
will hand new statements to police this
It follows a TV3 special in 2013, when
former police officer, Bridget McMenamin,
revealed why she believed her colleagues
at the time made serious mistakes in the
investigation and that the wrong man was
Ms McMenamin worked on the case and
told TV3 police ignored key evidence.
Lisa’s father, Doug Blakie, addressed 1500
people at the Christchurch Police Station
last week to celebrate White Ribbon Day
and told The Courier new information about
his daughter’s murder had been passed on to
police this week.
“It’s clear that new information has come
to light through private investigators and
from various sources. This information has
been passed on to police this week.”
He said the TV3 special had “sparked
a flurry of calls to its producers and two
“A lot of people know but the fear of
gang reprisal has led to the silence. There is
already a number of statements which Pip
Hall will be handing to police this week.
“I ask others to open the floodgate of
information and talk to police.”
Mr Hall told The Courier he expected
more information on the case “is coming”.
“In this game, you never know what ’s
going to happen. I think there will be some
things happening in this case. That ’s up to
the authorities. It might open a floodgate.
I’m not going to confirm or deny that Mr
Taylor has made a statement.”
Detective Superintendent Peter Read,
who is working on the case, confirmed new
information had come to light.
“I imagine it will take several months
to check the new statements against the
investigation,” he said.
“Obviously, we are going ... to look at new
information. Without knowing what it is,
I’m not prepared to speculate.”
Garth McVicar, of the Sensible Sentencing
Trust, also confirmed new information was
“I would like to think there will be justice
this time round. Doug is an incredibly
determined person. Part of what the Sensible
Sentencing Trust stands for is justice, and if
we can get some closure for this family that
would be good.” — Otago Daily Times
2 - Thursday, December 4, 2014
Thursday December 4
Urgent Cases Only
Phone 769 9300 first
Grey Medical Centre
KOKSHOORN. — To
Shannon and Cleve, a
beautiful baby brother
for Harper. Cooper
John, born November
29, 2014, weighing 7lb
7ozs. All well. Thanks
to McBrearty staff and a
special thank you to
away December 4, 2010.
Memories are forever
Kath and family.
God looked around His
And found an empty
Then He looked down
upon this earth,
And saw your tired face.
He put His arms around
And lifted you to rest.
God's garden must be
He only takes the best.
We lived next door for
laughter, and a few
A beautiful lady, right to
You were more than a
You were family and a
Ken, Lynda, Daren,
BLAIR, (nee Eklund)
Susan. — Passed away
on December 7, 2013,
aged 66. Sue's family
invitation for family and
friends to attend a
graveside service on
Sunday December 7,
2014 at 1.30pm to be
held at Burkes Creek
Cemetery where her
ashes will be laid to rest
in her home town
of Reefton. Westland
FDANZ. Phone (03)
Energy Green Ltd has been
granted a minerals exploration
permit for 1990ha at Waikiti, on the
West Coast. The company ’s director
is Shona Clarke and the shareholder
CBM Trust, which in turn has one
shareholder, Christopher Morrall, of
Christchurch. Bathurst Resources
has also applied for a new 358ha coal
DHB leads Maori
The West Coast District Health
Board says it is leading the way in
breast screening for Maori women.
About 80.6% of all eligible women
have undergone screening, with the
rate for Maori, at 89.7%, higher than
all other ethnicities on the West
Coast. “ The West Coast DHB is the
lead DHB for this target across
all other DHBs nationwide with
the next closest being
Nelson-Marlborough with 86.4%
of eligible Maori women being
screened,” a report out yesterday said.
Asian interest in South
Island ‘over whelming’
Tourism West Coast chief
executive Jim Little says there is
“over whelming interest ” in the
South Island from Asia following his
attendance at two travel shows. Mr
Little recently attended the National
Association of Travel Agents
Singapore travel show with Tourism
NZ, and converted 492 bookings to
New Zealand with the travel agents
there. “ The majority are coming
to the South Island and most to
the Coast,” he said. At Kiwi Link
South East Asia, also in Singapore,
Tourism West Coast partnered
with Christchurch and Canterbury
Tourism and presented a joint
presentation to 41 New Zealand
specialist agents from Thailand,
Malaysia, Indonesia and Singapore.
Mr Little said that “by being there
we were able to get people away
from the traditional itineraries”.
Arrivals: Pursuit II, one
Greymouth vessel. Departures:
Galatea II, Jay Elaine, Lady Sarah,
one Greymouth vessel. In port:
Pursuit II, 21 other vessels. Expected
departures: Nil. Expected arrivals:
Moon Shadow II, December 5;
Cook Canyon, December 6.
New info in Porters
Pass murder case
Members of the Cross Roads Dance group, including Emily Urban, left, as an angel, entertain the audience.
of the Westport News
A Westport woman has lost $4000 in
what police call a “classic romance scam”
and her scammer has threatened to kill a
local police officer.
The woman built up a relationship with a
man through the internet and phone calls
after they first met on-line in late October,
said Westport community constable Paul
The relationship got to the stage where
she thought the man, purporting to be from
Nigeria, was coming to live in Westport
and marry her.
He requested money from her to help
him get there, which she gave in “dribs and
Police eventually spoke to the scammer
on the woman’s cellphone late last month
and he threatened to kill the officer if he
ever came to Westport.
Police were not sure the woman was
convinced it had all been a scam, even after
the man made the threats.
Mr Sampson said victims often became
so involved in these situations it was hard
for them to believe they had been scammed.
He said the situation was very sad and
something the public needed to be aware
There was little hope a prosecution would
result or that the woman would get her
Trying to take a prosecution would
involve dealing with offshore agencies that
might be corrupt and network providers
that did not provide information.
Many scammers operated from internet
cafes and targeted numerous victims at
The woman used the banking transaction
company Western Union to provide the
money, which was often a red flag for scams.
While it was a legitimate company,
transactions with it were not easy to trace,
Mr Sampson said.
Some full-time Tai Poutini Polytechnic
students will have to pay to use the
polytechnic ’s support ser vices from the
beginning of February.
In October the polytechnic council
mooted charging for the use of ser vices
such as as careers guidance, counselling,
financial support and advice, health
ser vices, sports and recreation and clubs
Chief executive Allan Sargison said
they were now going ahead with the
move to charge students enrolled on
full-time, full-year programmes, a fee of
Mr Sargison said students who
enrolled on less than a full programme
would be charged on a pro rata basis. The
fee would not apply to full-cost recovery,
adult and community education (ACE),
or short-award students.
The fee would apply to students on
trades and general studies courses,
and those on business, computing,
outdoor education and industry training
Until the final numbers of enrolments
for next year were known, the
polytechnic did not have any indication
of how many students would be paying
the fee on the Coast. Students at the
Auckland and Christchurch campuses
would also have to pay the fee.
Students had previously paid a fee
of at least $90 for some ser vices when
previously Tai Poutini Polytechnic had
had a students’ association.
PICTURES: Stewart Nimmo
Singers, Carolyn Williams, left, Sarah Williams and Baptist Church pastor
Shaun Hutson lead in the Christmas carol Silent Night for a full house at the
annual combined churches carol ser vice at the Regent Theatre last night.
new fees for
Woman duped out of
$4000 in ‘romance scam’
With an increase in tourists forecast
for summer, the Grey District
Council hopes to avoid a repeat of
this year, which saw freedom camping
infringements almost $136,000 more
It had expected to issue only $42,000
in infringement notices.
Corporate services manager Ian
Young said other factors would have
contributed to the $136,000 budget
excess, but the vast majority would be
from freedom camping.
Each freedom camping infringement
netted the council $200.
The Greymouth Star previously
reported that the council issued
135 infringements in January, 96 in
February, and 80 in March.
Compliance team manager Kevin
Hebberd said about 45% of the tickets
issued were not recovered.
“They can be unrecoverable for
a number of reasons; they can be
written off because they have given an
adequate reason or they were certified
self-contained but not displayed,” Mr
January was the biggest month for
infringements, the majority of offenders
travelling in private cars.
With many tourism operators
forecasting a busy summer on the West
Coast, Mr Hebberd said he hoped
they would not see a repeat of the past
Word about where people could
legally freedom camp was starting to
get through. “ I’d really like to think
the message is getting out there, that
if they are not certified self-contained
they need to go to a campground (but) I
don’t think the vehicle dealer and rental
companies are good at getting that
Some companies were still sending
tourists believing their vehicles were
approved, when they were not.
“It is very unfair on the tourists and
it is deceptive. We advise them to go to
the rental companies and sort it out.”
Most people who offended paid their
fines, Mr Hebberd said.
“ We have a good many honest tourists
out there. A lot are nice people who just
made an unfortunate choice.”
Council hopes for freedom
A total of 33 West Coast entries
have been received for the 2015
New Zealand Dairy Industry
Entries in the national awards
closed last week with the West Coast
punching above its weight relative to
big regions such as Canterbury and
the Waikato, said national convener
Interest in the awards across the
country at 539 entries across the
awards’ three categories was also a
great result given the lower forecast
milk payout and a challenging
“The numbers ensure strong
competitions will run in each of our
11 regions,” Mrs Keeping said.
The West Coast contributed the
most entrants to the awards’ top of
the south region, which includes
Nelson and Marlborough.
In the sharemilker-equity milker
category the West Coast contributed
eight entrants of nine, including one
each from Maruia and Murchison.
Sharemilker entrants reflected a
broad sweep of West Coast dairy
farms from as far south as Franz Josef
Glacier and Hari Hari, Hokitika,
Kumara, Greymouth, Blackball, and
Westport in the north.
In the farm manager section there
were six West Coast entrants out
of nine for the top of the south.
The Coast, including Maruia,
contributed 10 of 19 entrants in the
dairy trainee section.
“The numbers this year are great
for your region,” Mrs Keeping said.
The level of West Coast interest
in the 2015 awards reflected the
organisational switch from regional
conveners to committees this
“They ’ve got a really really good
team operation there. By changing
things around, the West Coast to me
is one who has picked it up and run
Regional judging across the three
categories will begin in the new year.
33 Coast entries in NZ Dairy Industry Awards
The chief executive and
chairman of the West Coast
District Health Board will
be in Greymouth next week
to address a public meeting
about plans for an integrated
family health centre adjoining
the proposed new Greymouth
Construction of the new
$67 million hospital should
be completed 2017.
Attached will be an
integrated family centre,
combining GPs, pharmacists
and many other health
professionals under one roof.
A public information
session will be held next
Board chairman Peter
Ballantyne, chief executive
David Meates and West
Coast clinicians will be on
hand to talk about the project,
progress and timeframes,
share the preliminary
concept plans and update the
community on opportunities
to be involved.
The information night will
be held at the Greymouth
High School hall on
December 11, at 7pm.
Grey Base plans revealed
The former chairman of the West
Coast Conser vation Board has suggested
the idea of Cave Creek and Pike River
memorials, as well as extending the
Paparoa National Park.
Stewart Robertson was invited to a
goodbye lunch at the board meeting
last week in Greymouth, and addressed
members in the public session.
He wants the management plan for the
Paparoa National Park — which includes
the Cave Creek site, and is adjacent to
Pike River — reviewed. Mr Robertson
said there was a legislative requirement
that national park management plans be
reviewed at inter vals of no more than 10
years; it has been 22 years.
“The department undoubtedly has
limited resources and must prioritise
‘things to do’,” he said, while asking the
review be given the highest priority.
Since it was last reviewed in 1992,
the department ’s staffing, funding and
management of DOC “had cumulative
effects on the park which would
require analysis and adjustment of the
“The two tragic events at Cave Creek
and Pike River may require some
appropriate recognition resulting in
perhaps special memorial areas.”
Changes in land status may also be
appropriate, he said.
“Much of the most rugged, natural and
rarely visited areas lie outside the park in
the form of the northern portion of the
Paparoa Range and its valleys. ”
All of these areas would satisfy the
criteria for national park status, he
said, and the boundaries of the Paparoa
National Park should be extended to
include much or even all of the adjacent
wilderness areas, remote areas and high
country remote areas.
The Pike River families have also had
a Cave Creek-Pike River memorial walk
proposed. It is one of many ideas which
may be tabled before the Government at
a meeting next week over the mine site.
chairman adds to Pike,
Cave Creek suggestion
The Greymouth Heritage Trust says the
town has been dealt a major body blow by
the destruction of the goods sheds, and is
at a crossroads.
The goods sheds were demolished by the
Grey District Council after Cyclone Ita in
April. Other building owners are weighing
up whether to earthquake strengthen —
Trust chairman Stewart Nimmo, who
was re-elected at the annual general
meeting recently, said the highlight of the
year was helping support the formation of
a very strong group to save the Runanga
His own trust, set up when the post office
was demolished, had “had some successes
and some major setbacks”, he said.
“O ur relationship with the GDC (Grey
District Council) has had its ups and
Mr Nimmo congratulated building
owners Robin Ross, who is restoring the
Showcase Jewellers store in the heart of
town, and Peter Cornish, the new owner
of the Hannahs building who had also
signalled a restoration.
However, the destruction was the goods
sheds was a “major body blow ”.
“It frustrates me that some people see us
as being anti-development. I do not believe
this is the case at all — we just want great
development for our people that respects
our past and helps make our area a vibrant
and unique place to live and visit.
“Great sensitive development (new and
restoration) is essential and we support
Goods shed ‘body blow’
Continued from p1.
The report said his fatigue was the result
of his shift roster in the weeks leading up
to the incident, which did not allow him
sufficient opportunity to obtain good
quality sleep and recover adequately from
The train controller had been involved
in three operating irregularities during
the previous 16-months and Kiwi Rail
had identified that he had concentration
and focus issues. Despite this, Kiwi Rail
had allowed him to continue in the train
controller role, the report stated.
Kiwi Rail Infrastructure and Asset
Management acting group general
manager David Gordon, said today
measures had been enhanced to ensure
staff were rested and mentally alert at
“The circumstances of the incident are
clear. The train controller should not have
given the vehicles’ authorisation to access
the track without verifying the exact
location of the Tranz Alpine ... It was
excellent work on behalf of the train driver
who was listening to the radio instructions
to realise ... the potential risk.”
Kiwi Rail currently employed 44 train
controllers and planned to increase that to
52 in 2015.
“ Increasing the number of controllers
will offer us greater flexibility with
rostering. In the past three years we have
employed 23 controllers, the largest intake
in rail’s history,” Mr Gordon said.
Kiwi Rail also set up an employee
wellbeing support framework to ensure
shift rosters allowed for sufficient rest,
managing any problems obser ved at
work, and being alert to any changes in
performance or attendance.
Fatigue blamed for near-miss
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