Home' Greymouth Star : February 3rd 2015 Contents Greymouth Star
Tuesday, February 3, 2015 - 5
New stink bug
treatment for cars
imported from US
Public split on soldiers for Iraq
A new treatment for vehicles imported
from the United States will help keep
the brown marmorated stink bug out of
the country, the Ministry for Primary
Under the new rules, all new and used
cars, trucks, machinery, boats and parts
imported from the US must be heat
treated or fumigated with methyl bromide
before being shipped to New Zealand.
“In the past, we did not require
mandatory treatment prior to shipping
from the US,” MPI biosecurity and
environment manager Paul Hallett said.
“Instead new vehicles were assessed on
arrival by quarantine officers and only
those that were considered to be high risk
were treated on arrival.
“ We’ve been ramping up our efforts to
combat brown marmorated stink bug, but
the main driver for the strong new rules
has been the recent frequent discoveries
of stink bug infestations in new vehicles
and machinery consignments from the
There might be a delay before suitable
treatment facilities were established in the
US, he said.
As an interim measure, MPI was
working with the industry to help them
establish treatment options for vessels
on the water before landing and, as a last
resort, on the wharf at Auckland.
The bug was a voracious feeder that
severely disfigured fruit and rendered it
unmarketable, resulting in control costs
and production impact. — NZ ME
A former chairman of Harness
Racing New Zealand and three
other people have been charged
over an alleged $30 million pokie
It is the biggest criminal case of
its kind involving pokies outside
of a casino.
Four defendants have appeared
in the Wellington District
Court yesterday over the alleged
manipulation of grants which
come from pokie machines, a
Department of Internal Affairs
by the Serious Fraud Office
with obtaining by deception,
are former HRNZ chairman
Patrick O’Brien, his son Michael
O’Brien, Paul Anthony Max
and another person with interim
The O’Briens are of Blenheim
while Max is from Nelson.
A DIA spokeswoman
confirmed the quantum of the
alleged fraud was $30m.
was uncovered during an
investigation called Operation
Chestnut which involved the
department, SFO and the
Organised and Financial Crime
Agency of New Zealand.
“Operation Chestnut has been
a significant investigation in
the Class 4 sector and we’ve
welcomed the opportunity to
work in partnership with the
SFO and OFCANZ”,
department ’s Maarten Q uivooy
“ While we cannot talk about
the detail of the allegations while
they are before the court, the
charge of obtaining by deception
is a serious offence.
“The criminal charges are just
one aspect of the operation
and we’re working hard to use
what we’ve learned during the
investigation to lift compliance
in the sector,” he said.
— NZ ME -New Zealand Herald
Four in court over $30m pokie fraud
Prime Minister John Key says New Zealand’s
contribution to the coalition fighting Isis
(Islamic State) will be high on the agenda of his
talks in Wellington today with British Foreign
Secretary Philip Hammond.
But Prime Minister John Key made it clear
at his post-cabinet press conference yesterday
the only decision to be made in terms of New
Zealand’s contribution to troop training was
where and when they would be deployed.
Unlike his inter view with the BBC in January
when he said getting involved was the “price of
the club” (with traditional friends) he said it was
because New Zealand stood up for what was
“ Isis is something we have to confront,” he
said. “ They are a brutal organisation. This is an
organisation that has used children to behead
people, they have thrown gay people off building
structures, they are out there murdering people.
“Are we really saying that New Zealand, a
country that stands up for what ’s right and fair,
is going to be one of the few countries in the
developed world that is going to do absolutely
nothing? I don’t think most New Zealanders
would support that view. ”
There would be danger, he acknowledged.
“ But last time I looked, New Zealand is known
as a country that stands up for what ’s right and
there are dozens and dozens of countries that
are playing a role or are preparing to play a role.
“ New Zealand has got to make the correct
choices in terms of what we do, but I don’t think
doing nothing is an option. ”
Mr Hammond hosted a meeting in London in
January of the foreign ministers of 21 countries
involved in the fight against Isis where he was
reported as saying it would take a year or two to
push Isis out of Iraq.
Mr Key said the Cabinet did not discuss any
troop deployment at yesterday ’s meeting. He
hoped to make a decision around the end of the
He revealed that Iraqi politicians could soon
be visiting New Zealand to discuss details of the
Mr Key also referred to the beheading by Isis
at the weekend of a second Japanese hostage.
“ It is standard practice for a terrorist group
like Isis to intimidate countries but the counter-
argument is that if you buy into that, it just
allows them to get stronger.”
After his talks as Foreign Secretary, Mr
Hammond will don his political hat today and
address the National Party caucus at Premier
House about the British election in May and on
When questioned about it, Mr Key likened
it to Australian Labor leader and Opposition
leader Bill Shorten addressing the New Zealand
Labour Party conference. Mr Key himself had
spoken to the Conser vative Party conference in
Britain in 2013.
Meanwhile, the first major poll on deploying
troops suggests 50% of New Zealanders support
a non-combat troop training role, but a sizeable
minority, 45%, oppose it.
Appearing on TV3’s Firstline this morning,
Mr Key said the Government would not take
action that would heighten the risk of attack
against New Zealand.
“But I think we also have to accept that if we
don’t take action and Isis becomes stronger, then
the longer term threats actually are much greater
and I think that in the end, these things become
one of those things where you can stand back
and do nothing, but Isis will become stronger
and stronger, the threats will become greater.
“It ’s a balancing act, it’s very finely balanced of
course, but I still believe it ’s the right thing to
potentially train forces up in Iraq.”
Asked whether New Zealand’s involvement in
the fight against Isis would heighten the risk of
a New Zealander being taken hostage, Mr Key
said the Government had a policy of not paying
“It ’s easy to say that, but all I’d say to you is
that if you do start paying ransoms, then you
put at risk every New Zealander that travels to
“ We’ll be doing everything that we can if
we send them to make sure that they’re safe,
that ’s why we’re taking this process slowly and
“I accept that there are some risks there. New
Zealand’s not on its own. There are dozens and
dozens of countries who are taking action, who
are doing something to try and stand up to Isis.
“I believe in the history of mankind you can
find groups like Isis, they happen to be a bit
more brutal and a bit more effective at social
media than others, but you can find the same
type of tactics.
“If the world hadn’t stood up to them, I don’t
know where we’d be today now, but I think we’d
be in a poorer place.”
— N ZM E-New Zealand Herald
In a cornfield in a quiet, rural
area near Waimate, Rory Foley
and a team of actors are getting
ready to scare the yell out of
anyone game enough to enter
his horror Maize Maze.
On Friday, February 13, Mr
Foley ’s horror Maize Maze
opens for its third season.
In two years, it has already
helped to raise more than
$20,000 for the Cancer Society
as people from around the
South Island have travelled to
the maze on the Studholme
farm for the opportunity to
experience terror without
danger, as about 20 actors hide
in areas of the maze.
For $20, with all profits again
going to the Cancer Society,
people can enter the maze.
They are split into pairs,
armed with only one torch
between them, and make their
way around 2ha of baffling
twists and turns in darkness.
The screams coming from
inside add to the intrigue as the
next victims wait to head in.
“A lot of people get in there
with their little torch, they ’re
vulnerable because I break them
down into pairs and they know
we’re in there,’’ he said.
Mr Foley gives little away
about what to expect from his
third Maize Maze, other than
that it is bigger and better, with
more props and costumes.
“Let ’s just say that this year,
there’s going to be a slight Alice
in Wonderland feel,’’ he said.
As well as running the maze,
Mr Foley is also an actor. It
is addictive, he said, and he
could not wait for this season
“It sounds horrible but I really
enjoy making people cry,’’ he
Mr Foley has become well
known for his horror-themed
charitable work for various
groups and individuals in South
Canterbury, also organising
the Shadow Exhibition, the
Waimate Hospital Horror
Asylum and the Waimate
He said he recognised a
need to create different and
“fun’’ ways of fundraising
and an opportunity to create
something new for young
people in South Canterbury.
The Maize Maze will be open
each Friday and Saturday night
from February 13, until late
For those not game enough
to enter at night, there is also a
day maze option.
— Otago Daily Times
‘Amaizing’ fundraiser ready to scare
PICTURE: Otago Daily Times
Studholme horror Maize Maze creator Rory Foley checks the maize field in preparation for the
Friday, February 13, opening night.
man for crime
A man police allege could be responsible
for about 100 burglaries in the Waihi and
the Coromandel area has been arrested.
Members of the armed offenders squad
joined Waihi police in raiding a Waihi
address on Friday morning.
Detective senior sergeant Daryl Smith
said police were following leads in relation
to dozens of burglaries in the area.
Armed staff were required to assist with
the search warrant as tip-offs suggested
the occupants could have had access to
While firearms were not recovered,
police allege property and information
linked one offender to what at first looked
like 15 burglaries in Waihi and one theft
from a vehicle.
That has subsequently expanded to
six burglaries in Waihi Beach, five in
Whiritoa and two in Whangamata.
Mr Smith said police were also looking
into links to 10-15 offences in Whitianga
which included the theft of various
vehicles including motorbikes, a go-kart
and a utility.
A 26-year-old man and two other
people wanted on warrants to arrest were
taken into custody and face a variety of
dishonesty charges, Mr Smith said.
Waikato police had also apprehended a
further seven people.
— N ZM E-Bay of Plenty Times
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