Home' Greymouth Star : June 26th 2015 Contents Greymouth Star
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— iwi head
Ngapuhi chairman Sonny Tau has
admitted to being caught in possession
of dead kereru and says he deeply regrets
Mr Tau confirmed that he was
questioned on Tuesday by a Department
of Conser vation officer about the kereru
— also known as native wood pigeon —
in his possession.
In a statement released last evening, he
said: “I wish to assure you I did and will
continue to fully co-operate with any
“I also wish to say this was a mistake,
which I deeply regret. The laws around
native bird protection are important and
to be respected by all, myself included. ”
It is believed that Mr Tau was
questioned while boarding a plane in
Invercargill, and was carrying five of the
birds under his jacket.
The chairman of the Northland-based
iwi said it was important to note that
no charges had been laid. He would not
The rare bird is protected and Mr Tau
could face a fine of up to $100,000 if
Earlier yesterday, MPs at Parliament
refused to discuss the potential
ramifications of the investigation for the
leader of New Zealand’s biggest iwi.
New Zealand First leader Winston
Peters said if the allegation was proven
there would be “serious consequences”
but he did not want to “jump to
conclusions without a court case”.
Asked whether he had eaten the bird
himself, the Northland MP said: “ To the
best of my knowledge, I don’t know, but
I’m not saying no.
“I think one time I was at a marae, at
a place in the Hokianga, and I suspected
it might have been but I didn’t know it.”
Maori Party co-leader Te Ururoa
Flavell said he was concerned about
any illegal act, but all the details of the
investigation were not yet known.
“ We always say that we leave it for
our own people to make judgments on
ourselves, so we have to leave it for that
course to follow. ”
Hunting kereru has been illegal for
nearly 100 years, though some Maori
claim they have a traditional right to
hunt the pigeon.
Asked whether protection laws were
out of step with the Treaty of Waitangi,
Mr Flavell said: “ The law is the law.”
He also said he had never eaten the
Treaty Negotiations Minister Chris
Finlayson refused to comment on
any potential implications for Crown
negotiations with Ngapuhi.
“Read my lips — I ’m not commenting,”
— NZ ME-New Zealand Herald
New York apartment for UN rep labelled extravagant
The Government has paid
$11.4 million for a swanky apartment
close to the United Nations in New
York for New Zealand’s ambassador to
the UN which Labour has criticised as
evidence of a culture of extravagance.
The 244 square metre apartment is
in the 44-floor Zeckendorf tower at
50 UN Plaza, just across the road from
News of the Government purchase
appeared to be by way of a correction
on an Australian website when it
wrongly reported that the apartment
had been bought by the Queen
because of the wording in the sale and
The apartment has three bedrooms
and three bathrooms and overlooks the
The ambassador, formally known
as the Permanent Representative, is
career diplomat Gerard van Bohemen,
who will sit in the chair of the UN
Security Council next week when New
Zealand takes over the presidency of
the Security Council for a month.
Former ambassador Jim McLay and
his wife Marcy lived in an apartment
overlooking the East River.
Labour’s foreign affairs spokesman
David Shearer said the price was
extravagant in anyone’s language.
“ Foreign Minister Murray McCully
is completely out of touch with the
lives of real people. ”
He said the spending had come to
light two years after Mr McCully had
gutted the Ministry of Foreign Affairs
and Trade to save money.
“He is now splashing those savings
The apartment block was designed by
British architect Lord Norman Foster.
The cheapest apartment is reportedly
priced at $3.6m and the most
expensive being the three-storey
penthouse at $145m.
— NZ ME -New Zealand Herald
The view from the kitchen.
About $1.8 million of assets
linked to convicted finance
company boss Neal Nicholls is to
be forfeit to the police.
The forfeiture comes less than
a month after Nicholls was
released from jail on parole.
The Capital and Merchant
Finance director was jailed in
2012 for eight and a half years
after being found guilty on
Serious Fraud Office charges and
admitting allegations made by the
Financial Markets Authority. He
was released on parole last month.
Assets linked to Nicholls have
been targeted by police since
2013 and some property tied
to him was frozen under the
Criminal Proceeds Recovery Act.
investigation which disclosed
Nicholls had contingent interests
in various properties.
Rather than argue the case
in front of a judge, the police,
Nicholls and the legal holders of
that property have now reached
an out-of-court settlement over
This means property worth
about $1.8m will now be forfeit
to the Crown.
The settlement was approved
this month by the High Court ’s
Justice Christian Whata, who said
the agreement was “a common
sense compromise” that ser ved
the overall interests of justice.
Suppression orders, however,
remain in place over many of the
details of the settlement.
Assets associated with former
Capital and Merchant director
Wayne Douglas have also been
forfeit to the Crown and police
last year cut a deal with the
owners of two properties linked
to him. The action against his
assets was the first time police
had targeted property tied to a
failed finance company director.
— NZ ME-New Zealand Herald
Couple die together
after 67 years married
A Kapiti couple in their 90s who
died within two hours of one another
in the same rest home room were firm
Christians ready to meet their maker,
their younger son says.
“They were strong Christians and
therefore they knew where they were
going, and they had no problem about
going there,” Robert Nees said yesterday
of his late parents Hugh, 94, and Joan,
They had been married for 67 years
after meeting in the Hutt Valley and
died on Tuesday at Eldon Lodge,
Paraparaumu, where they were cared for
since moving from their Waikanae home
two and a half months ago.
His father, a retired Baptist minister
suffering from cancer, died just two
hours before his mother, who had a
stroke on Sunday.
Asked whether they might have
had any premonition of their close
departure, Mr Nees said: “It’s so hard to
know — it almost seems like it, doesn’t
But he said his mother would not have
known that her husband had preceded
her, even though the couple “were in the
same room, lying beside each other”,
surrounded by family.
“Their departure, it’s sad but happy —
life wasn’t easy for the last little while
and that ’s over, that ’s all good.”
The couple had five children, of whom
they are sur vived by two sons and a
daughter as well as by 14 grandchildren
and 14 great-grandchildren.
On top of suffering the death of
two of their children, they also lost
their 31-year-old grandson Nicholas
Heyward in May last year, when he was
shot dead by robbers from a motorcycle
Mr Heyward, whose mother Margaret
Nees died in a car crash when he was
younger, was born in Australia but
travelled on a New Zealand passport.
His grandparents retired to the Kapiti
Coast in the 1980s after Mr Nees
senior’s ministry took them to localities
as diverse as Taumarunui and Papua
Mr Nees said his father started as a
minister in D unedin before moving to
Levin and Gisborne, and then worked
at the Baptist Union office when it was
based in Wellington.
— NZ ME-New Zealand Herald
Gang boss who ordered
murder to be freed
A Black Power gang boss is to be
released from prison almost 20 years
after ordering the execution of a police
Brownie Mane was sentenced in 1997
to a minimum non-parole period of
17 years over, what the Parole Board
described as, the “appalling murder of an
Three others were also jailed over
the killing in which police witness
Christopher Crean was shot dead at his
New Plymouth home in October 1996.
The Parole Board described Mane as
“an active and dangerous gang leader” at
the time of the killing.
Mane appeared before the board in
December, when he was in external self
care. He had been on escorted outings,
and carried out some community work
in secure release-to-work employment
with a supermarket, as well as doing five
home leaves and shopping outings, and a
period of compassionate leave.
He was said to be “making excellent
progress”. However, the board felt
“further testing was necessary”.
In November, he was removed from
external self care “for reasons unrelated
to Mr Mane”, and moved to internal self
“Despite his disappointment . . . he
remained motivated with a positive
attitude and is described as having
excellent compliance and behaviour in
prison,” the board’s decision said.
Mane had also completed all
rehabilitation programmes and “actively
participated in pro-social activities”.
“He presented extremely well to the
board, to the extent that we are satisfied
that what risk may remain is not undue
and can be appropriately managed
in the community with the extensive
support that he has, and with the special
conditions being monitored by the
Probation Ser vice.”
Mane would be released on July 1
under the standard conditions, the
Parole Board said. A number of special
conditions would also be in place,
including a ban on entering the Taranaki
province, within boundaries north
of Patea, South of Urunui or west of
Taumarunui. — NZ ME
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