Home' Greymouth Star : October 8th 2015 Contents Greymouth Star
2 - Thursday, October 8, 2015
Pumping station repairs
A pumping station built in the
early 1990s as part of the Greymouth
floodwall protection works, needs
repairs. The Grey District Council
has allowed $83,000 to fix cracks
in and around the Johnston Street
flood pumping station. Assets
manager Mel Sutherland said the
work required was to fix “minor
separation” between the pumping
station building and the pipes. It was
not as bad as originally thought but
the work would require a specialised
approach due to the gas risk from
the pipes, which drain backed-up
stormwater from the centre of town,
and space restrictions on the site.
Minerals permit sought
Vortex Minerals has applied for a
permit for minerals exploration at
Mount French, near Mitchells. The
proposed area covers 4275ha. Vortex
is based in Napier.
Port of Greymouth. — Arrivals:
Nil. Departures: Nil. In port:
Canopus, 25 other vessels. Expected
departures: Nil. Expected arrivals:
Judge doubts cannabis claim
Thursday October 8
Urgent Cases Only
Phone 769 9300 first
Grey Medical Centre
ROSS, Heather. — In
loving memory of our
beautiful Mum, mother-
Six years ago
Bobby, Gail and Phil,
Gloria and Jim, and all
Remembering you is
I do it every day.
It's the emptiness with-
That never goes away.
A Cobden woman who claimed she
used cannabis as treatment for sleep
deprivation was convicted of possession
of cannabis seeds, a plant and a cannabis
utensil and given a nine-month
A police search of the home of
Amanda Ruth Clarke, 28, on August 24
uncovered 3.54g of cannabis in a kitchen
drawer, and 69 seeds in another drawer.
Spotting knives, and a bong were also
When questioned, Clarke told police
she occasionally used cannabis.
Lawyer Vicki Walsh said Clarke
used the drug as treatment for
sleep deprivation, as she was a full-
time worker and mother, who had
previously used sleeping tablets but
had found they made her too drowsy
in the mornings.
Greymouth District Court Judge
Raoul Neave said he was a “ little
dubious” of that excuse and described
it as a “ill-considered and misguided
attempt at self-medication”.
Nicole Eleanor Prendergast was
sentenced to 40 hours’ community work
for breaching her court sentence.
On January 20, Prendergast was given
100 hours of community work for
drink-driving. However, between April
3 and August 6 she failed to report for
her sentence on 11 occasions. She had
last reported on July 9 and had 62.5
hours of her sentence remaining.
Lawyer Vicki Walsh said Prendergast ’s
life had been “turned upside down”
as at the end of tough Family Court
proceedings, she and her children had
had to move house twice. She had
told her social worker of the problems
surrounding her inability to complete
her community work, and had thought
that would be passed on to Probation
Ser vices. However, that had not
Judge Raoul Neave said the chaos in
the defendant ’s life was not at such a
level that she could not “pick up a phone
to call Probation”.
Linda Ann Ford, of Christchurch was
convicted and fined $750 for assault on
The man at the wheel of a car which
suffered an accident with “tragic
consequences” by leaving a woman with
permanent disabilities was convicted of
careless driving, banned from driving
for six months and ordered to make an
emotional harm repayment of $5000.
Matthew Allan Alexander pleaded
guilty to the offence.
Lawyer Eymard Bradley said there had
been no restorative justice conference
into the incident, as the victim had not
wanted to take part.
He referred to an accident with “tragic
consequences”, which had left the victim
with injuries that would last for the rest
of her life.
Mr Bradley said Alexander had been
in a relationship with the woman for a
short time, and had been on their way to
see his family in Christchurch.
They stopped in Springfield for
breakfast, and had been coming around
an S-bend at Kirwee when the car had
come off the road.
He said the vehicle, which had been
fitted with heavy rubber, off-road tyres,
had been hard to correct.
The $5900 car that Alexander had
been driving was written off in the crash.
The former partner had also suffered
injuries which were still painful to her.
Judge Raoul Neave said there was no
evidence of any alcohol consumption,
and no suggestion of excessive speed.
The crash appeared to be the result
of a “slight misjudgment in taking a
corner” which had resulted in serious
consequences, whereby the victim had
suffered permanent disabilities.
Jethro Reimana Macdonald was
convicted of receiving and ordered to
pay reparation of $45 after he admitted
receiving six batteries stolen from
Aratuna Freighters. When police found
the batteries in Macdonald’s possession,
he told them that he thought the
batteries were “all legit”.
James Thomas Thompson
convicted of possession of cannabis
and fined $400. On September 23,
Thompson was a passenger in a car
which was stopped for speeding. Police
searched the car after they smelled
cannabis and found 2.12g of the drug.
Thompson said he smoked the drug
because he enjoyed it.
Luke Graeme Duyvesteyn was
convicted and fined $750 and banned
from driving for six months for excess
breath-alcohol. On October 3 he
was driving in Main South Road,
Greymouth, when he was breath-tested,
A Greymouth teenager, who told
police he was allowed to drive while
disqualified in order to take his friend
to hospital, was sentenced to 100 hours
of community work and banned from
driving for 12 months from February
10 next year on a third charge of driving
On February 10, Levi Mark Preston,
18, was banned from driving for six
months for driving while disqualified.
He was given a further six-month ban
on April 28, which was due to start
on August 10, for again driving while
However, on August 25 Preston was
stopped by police for speeding on the
Taylor ville Road. He told police that
he was driving his friend to hospital for
emergency treatment, so he was allowed
However, police had asked the
front seat passenger if he needed an
ambulance, and he had said ‘no’.
Kim Marie Alexander, 37, of Blackball,
was convicted of careless driving and
Lee Paul Fraser was remanded at large
to December 10 to defend two charges
of sustained loss of traction, on July 14.
Shanar Ruiha Rose-Ann Yorke, 36, of
Cobden, was convicted of threatening
behaviour, two charges of assaulting
police and a breach of intensive
super vision. She was remanded for
sentence to December 8. A charge of
obstructing police was withdrawn.
Dunedin author Duncan Dolby
does some final editing of his book
The West Coast Whitebait Children,
Intimate Secrets Shared with a
Stranger, to be launched shortly. The
book, listed for the Ockham NZ Book
Awards, relates to towns, rivers and
people from up and down the Coast.
Hokitika and South Westland
feature strongly, particularly Bruce
It will be released in two series. The
stories are based on the “intimate and
vivid depiction of the lives and legends
of characters, places and events from
the South Island over the past 60 or so
years, particularly on the West Coast,”
“Stories include humour, and
insights into the spirit of the Coast:
about its beauty, ancient Maori and
recent history, village life and people,
and the importance and demise of
The writer, who spent some of his
childhood years in Granity, will host a
book signing in Hokitika on October
19 at the Westland District Library,
before launching it at the Westport
Book reveals whitebait ‘secrets’
A woman has admitting stealing more
than $1200 from the Returned and
Ser vices Association, in Reefton.
Donna Jean Mills, 48, appeared at the
Blenheim District Court on Monday
charged with theft by a person in a
special relationship, the Marlborough
Express newspaper reported.
Mills worked as treasurer of the Reefton
RSA women’s section for 18 months, and
was tasked with paying bills, fundraising
activities, and banking cheques and cash.
A police summary of facts stated
Mills failed to bank $120 to cover travel
costs for a sister club visit to Westport
in September last year, the newspaper
She also falsified records, including
using twink correction fluid to alter the
deposit slips from a funeral catering
job to look like the money had come
from the club’s Christmas dinner and
She also failed to bank annual club
subscriptions from three committee
“I had every intention of putting it back,
then my husband got made redundant
and I have been sick and I am waiting
for an operation,” Mills told police.
Mills was remanded until November 3
for sentencing, and a restorative justice
An amateur Hokitika aviator who let
his enthusiasm for his hobby “overpower
his judgment ” was sentenced to 100 hours
of community work after admitting four
breaches of the Aviation Act.
Lawyer Fletcher Pilditch, acting on
behalf of the Civil Aviation Authority,
said that between July 18 and November
23, David Ross Baker operated three
separate aircraft without having a valid
medical certificate to fly, and without
valid airworthiness certificates and
registration for his aircraft.
In an attempt to mask the fact that he
was operating the aircraft illegally, Baker
also failed to enter the flights he made in
his pilot ’s logbook.
Baker’s offending was eventually
uncovered by footage from Hokitika
Airport, which was examined by the
Once Baker’s offending was discovered,
he made a “full and frank admission”
about what he had done, Mr Pilditch
It was not a situation where there
was any kind of “careless operation or
endangerment,” though an aggravating
factor was that on one occasion he had
taken a passenger with him.
Lawyer Eymard Bradley said Baker
had made inquiries with the CAA
about converting his light aircraft to a
microlight, which meant he would only
have needed an airworthiness certificate.
However, Baker had “jumped the
gun” in using the aircraft before those
inquiries were complete.
A Franz Josef Glacier woman who
shoplifted from the same supermarket
on 10 separate occasions because she
was having a tough time financially,
was discharged without conviction
and ordered to pay reparation of $243
in the Greymouth District Court.
Te Rauhina Puawai Hutana, 26,
stole groceries from the Franz Josef
Four Square supermarket on 10
separate occasions, stealing products
in amounts of $13.62, $13.75, $24.20,
$21.05, $19.82, $34.54, $25.02,
$36.62, $9.98 and $45.29 between
August 25 and September 22.
In court, she pleaded guilty to the
Hutana committed the offences
having previously been given a pre-
charge warning for shoplifting from
the same store, on July 29, when she
was trespassed from the premises.
Lawyer Vicki Walsh said that at
the time of the offending, Hutana
had been going through tough times
financially with her young family. In
addition to looking after her younger
brother, her partner also had his
hours cut, which put further strain on
Ms Walsh said Hutana was
ashamed of the offending, which
had brought shame on both her,
and her young family, in a small
A Whataroa man who was found in
possession of a loaded rifle alongside
a cannabis plant, five cannabis pipes,
a bong, spotting knives and cannabis
grinders, was convicted of possession
of the drugs and utensils, and the
Tye Robert Rasmussen was fined a
total of $1500.
In 2010, Rasmussen had an
application for a firearms licence
refused and was advised to reapply
for a licence two years later. However
no further application was received.
On August 10 this year, a police
search of Rasmussen’s property
revealed a loaded .308-calibre
Mossberg rifle in the wardrobe, with
other ammunition in the bedroom.
Five cannabis pipes, a bong, grinders
and spotting knives were also found.
Police found 17g and 7g of cannabis
in two plastic bags. In the freezer,
frozen cannabis, which weighed 516g
when wet was also found.
Lawyer George Linder said the
frozen cannabis had been in the
freezer for so long the defendant had
forgotten it was there.
A Scottish glacier guide whose
car ended up lodged in native bush,
suspended 1m off the ground, after he
went for a drive to “drown a broken
heart” was banned from driving for
six months and fined $850.
McTaggart was driving along State
highway 6 on September 24 when
he veered on to the other side of the
road while trying to negotiate a bend,
narrowly missing a number of road
signs. He crashed off the road and
through some native bush, with his
car eventually coming to rest 1m off
When he was breath-tested at
the Franz Josef Police Station,
Mactaggart blew 995mg. He told
police that he had gone for a drive to
try to get over a recent relationship
McTaggart had been trying to
“drown a broken heart ”, as on the
night of the offence a woman with
whom he had been in a relationship,
who was living in Australia, had
told him she would not be coming
over to see him, as she had been in
a relationship with someone else for
Aroha Reihana, 31, of Kaniere,
was remanded on bail without plea
to October 27 on charges of theft,
burglary, receiving and escaping
Lawyer Marcus Zintl said Reihana
had previously pleaded guilty to the
charge of theft, and was offering an
intimated guilty plea to the charge
of receiving, as she disputed that she
had received $4200.
Reihana claimed she had received a
much smaller amount and he hoped
the police would amend the details of
He also said that the escaping from
police custody related to Reihana
being arrested for breaching her
curfew and drinking. When police
arrested her she ran away, and was
later located by police.
The lawyer said Reihana had got
the times of her curfew mixed up,
and thought it had started at 10pm,
Judge Raoul Neave said he was not
sure he believed that excuse, however
he agreed to remand Reihana to
October 27 in order for her to
complete a legal aid application,
and for the necessary charges to be
Isaac Guyer, 34, of Hokitika, was
remanded on bail to December 7 for a
legal aid application to be completed
for excess breath-alcohol of 690mg,
possession of cannabis and a cannabis
pipe, possession of knuckle dusters,
assault with a car and sustained loss
Lawyer George Linder said
Guyer pleaded guilty to the charges
relating to drugs and possession of
Bryan Thomas Pearson, 46, of
Hokitika, was banned from driving
for eight months and fined $750 for
was stopped by police driving in
Fitzherbert Street, blowing 449mg.
He told police he had been working
on a car with a friend, and had taken
it for a test drive.
Shoplifter ordered to pay reparation
A boiler from the old Cobden quarry
crane has been uncovered during track
clearing on Cobden Island.
Conser vation Volunteers found the
boiler near the Grey River.
Department of Conser vation
Greymouth historian Jim Staton said
it was from one of two old shovel
steam cranes that worked on the old
The boiler lies where a railway line
used to run from the quarry to the
tiphead, parallel to the river.
An old steel tank was found
alongside the boiler, and it was a “ bit
of an unknown”.
“It’s a steel tank that looks like a
boiler initially,” Mr Staton said.
It features rows of holes built in at
the time of manufacture.
“That ’s the real oddity. The pipes
and flanges and fittings are difficult to
Mr Staton is keen to hear from
anyone who can shed any light on the
Puzzling discovery on Cobden Island
PICTURE: Laura Mills
Department of Conservation biodiversity ranger Henk Stengs with a boiler from the old Greymouth steam crane and an old steel tank of unknown origin.
By Koren Allpress
of the Westport News
The number of jobs
advertised on the West
Coast during July,
August and September
is down by 22% when
compared with the same
three months last year,
according to Trade Me
Meanwhile, the number
of job applications for
the same period rose by
The average pay rate for
jobs advertised during the
three months dropped by
2.3% to $54,771.
West Coast MP
Damien O’Connor said
those figures were not
He attributed them to
the realities of a slowing
economy hitting home to
not only the regions, but
the cities also.
He said dairy farmers
had “shut the chequebook,
as we knew would
happen”, but that Prime
Minister John Key had
attempted to play down
the significance of the
“ huge” drop in dairy
Mr O’Connor met
with Buller Mayor Garry
Howard this week.
“ We both believe
that encouraging and
supporting all the
smaller businesses on
the West Coast is the
way to generate more job
opportunities in the short
Mr O’Connor said the
West Coast was facing
some big challenges, but
it was in a better position
than many other regions
because it had a few
the wider economy such
as tourism, dairying and
A cyclist has died in a downhill crash
on a hill above Christchurch today.
The cyclist, believed to be a man in his
50s, was cycling down Evans Pass Road
in Sumner at about 9.45am.
“Police investigations are ongoing,
but witnesses report seeing the man
travelling downhill prior to the crash,”
acting senior sergeant Jim Currie said.
The death has been referred to the
No further details of the man would be
released until formal identification had
taken place, and his next of kin informed,
police said. — NZ ME
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