Home' Greymouth Star : July 19th 2017 Contents Greymouth Star
6 - Wednesday, July 19, 2017
A legal challenge brought by
convicted murderer Phillip John
Smith to have a temporary ban
on prison releases declared
illegal is headed to court after
Corrections’ lawyers failed to
have it thrown out.
Smith fled to Brazil while on
temporary release from prison
in November, 2014, prompting
Corrections to temporarily
cancel “reintegrative” releases for
He is now challenging that
temporary ban as unlawful and
wants a judicial review of the the
prison ser vice’s guidelines for the period.
Four other prisoners have also filed
proceedings against Corrections for negligence
and loss of income as a result of the suspension
of the release to work programme.
But Crown lawyers have been trying to get
Smith’s complaint thrown out before it gets to
a court, saying it was an abuse of process, there
was no reasonable case to argue and that Smith
lacked the status required to actually bring the
But the High Court at Auckland yesterday
rejected their application to have the case
thrown out before a substantial hearing.
“Smith is sufficiently affected by, and
connected to, the decision at issue to have
personal standing to bring his
c laim,” Justice Matthew Palmer
said in his decision.
“ Even if he did not, there
is sufficient public interest in
whether the temporary release
scheme was lawful that there
would be public interest in
standing too.” The Crown was
also ordered to pay “reasonable
disbursements” to Smith.
Smith was on a 74-hour
temporary release from Spring
Hill prison when he managed to
board a flight to South America
in November, 2014, sparking an
international manhunt, before
being sent back to New Zealand.
He was jailed in 1996 for at least 13 years
for murdering the father of a 12-year-old
Wellington boy he had been molesting, while
on bail on the child molestation charges.
Temporary release is granted for some
prisoners to reintegrate them into the
community, but was temporarily revoked after
Smith’s escape as a precaution.
The temporary ban has since been replaced
with a new set of policies.
Smith also made international headlines
in March after successfully challenging
Corrections’ decision to take away his toupee.
That decision has since been appealed.
Smith’s release bid
headed for court
An Auckland police officer’s tasering
of a teenager was “excessive and
unjustified ”, the police watchdog has
The 17-year-old was tasered in South
Auckland in September, 2016 when he
became verbally abusive and resisted
efforts to be handcuffed.
In a report released yesterday, the
Independent Police Conduct Authority
found the use of the taser was against
police policy as the teen was not
“The young man was being restrained
by two officers at the time he was
tasered. Although he managed to spit
in the sergeant ’s direction twice, the
sergeant ’s use of the taser was excessive
and unjustified,” IPCA chairman Judge
Sir David Carruthers said.
The sergeant ’s arrest of the young man
was lawful, but his decision was ill-
considered and premature and the arrest
“ unnecessarily escalated the situation”,
the IPCA also found.
The teen, who was arguing with his
girlfriend on the side the road, was
pepper-sprayed while resisting arrest
and taken into custody for “behaving in
a threatening manner”.
In response to the findings, Inspector
Julia Lynch said the officer stopped
to intervene as the teen was “highly
The man did not make a complaint
regarding the incident and it was the
police who referred the incident to the
An internal employment investigation
was still ongoing, she said.
“Lessons have been learnt and we
continue to provide training and
constructive feedback to help inform
decision-making and judgment with
our staff.” — NZN
The mother of an Auckland
toddler has told a court the child
was her “twin” and had wanted
to leave their house on errands
the morning she was fatally shot
by a shotgun held by her father.
Daniels-Sanft died in Favona
on June 2 last year after a blast
from a shotgun held by her
father, Gustav Sanft, 26, hit her
at point blank range.
He is standing trial at the High
Court at Auckland accused of
the child’s manslaughter.
He denies the charge, saying
the gun went off by accident, but
has pleaded guilty to unlawfully
possessing a pistol.
Daniels, yesterday told the court
on the morning her daughter
died she left to organise a large
rubbish bin because the family
was moving out of their home
Amokura had wanted to
join her mum and cried when
Ms Daniels instead left her
behind because she thought she
would be in too much of a rush
to take her, she said.
“S he was like my twin,” she
Ms Daniels received a call
telling her to rush home.
When she arrived, police
stopped her and would not let
her into her house.
“All I remember is that I
wanted to go and hug my
baby girl,” Ms Daniels said in
Despite her sorrow, Ms Daniels
said she is still in a relationship
with Sanft and called him a
“He was in love, Amo
(Amokura) was his baby,” she
Earlier on Monday, prosecutor
Katie Hogan accepted Sanft had
not intended to kill his daughter
and was surprised when the
She said when the blast hit
his daughter, Sanft immediately
dropped the shotgun and picked
up his daughter, saying, “I pulled
the trigger she was just playing
up, I f*** up, what have I done?”
Despite this, Ms Hogan said
Sanft was guilty of manslaughter
when he recklessly pointed
a sawn-off shotgun at his
daughter and pulled the trigger,
perhaps to scare her, because she
began playing up by jumping on
Ms Hogan said Sanft failed to
check if the weapon was loaded
or if its safety catch was on.
Defence lawyer Phil Hamlin
said Sanft had believed the
shotgun no longer worked
properly and that it accidentally
went off in his hands as he
was waiting to throw it away
neighbour, Susana Yuen, told
the court she had seen Amokura
playing in the drive way of her
house with her “little rubber
duck” on the morning she was
shot. — NZN
Tot’s mum tells of shock
The Ministry of Education has
proved that students are not the
only ones who make mistakes
the ministry itself has owned
up to giving a wrong answer to
The ministry prepared an
answer to a written parliamentary
question for Education Minister
Nikki Kaye in May asking for
the approval rates of applications
for Ongoing Resourcing Scheme
(ORS) funding for students with
special needs since 2010.
But when asked today to explain
the declining trend in approvals,
down from 69% in 2010 to 57%
in 2015-16 and 55% in the 10
months to April, the ministry
said its facts were wrong.
It now says the actual approval
rates for the latest two years were
65% in 2015-16 and 64% in the
11 months to the end of May,
producing a broadly flat trend
Katrina Casey, head of sector
enablement and support, said the
parliamentary record had been
“Unfortunately I have made a
mistake and given the minister
“As soon as I became aware of
this, the correct information was
provided to the minister and
the answer has been officially
changed. It was a mistake
which I regret. ’’ But Green MP
Catherine Delahunty, who asked
the original question, said the
mistake was alarming.
“It ’s kind of like really, who can
we trust?’’ she said.
“Given that the parents have
to go through merry hell to get
this money out of them, it’s a
little bit scary that the ministry
got their figures wrong, because
they expect other people to get it
“If the parents did such a bad
job of filling in forms as the
ministry has done, they wouldn’t
get funded.’’ ORS funding pays
for teacher aides and specialist
teachers for the most needy 1%
of school students.
The corrected figures show that
applications since 2010 have
fluctuated between a low of just
under 1400 in 2012-13 and a
high of 1630 in the year to last
The approval rate has ranged
between 62% and 73%, with no
apparent trend up or down.
Earlier data provided to
Youthlaw show that students
with ORS funding
concentrated in the mid-to-low
socio-economic deciles 3 to 5,
where about 2% of all students
are in ORS.
ORS-funded students made up
only 1.2 of students in the lowest
two deciles, 0.7% in the mid-to-
upper deciles 6 to 9, and only
0.4% of students in the highest
Youthlaw solicitor Kenton
Starr said Youthlaw could advise
families on how to appeal if their
applications for ORS funding are
— NZ M E-New Zealand Herald
Ministry owns up to giving
wrong answer to Parliament
The employer of a woman who stole more
than $200,000 lived on the bare minimum
for three years completely unaware one of his
most trusted staff members was stealing from
It would eventually be a new staff member at
AP Group who became suspicious about Lois
Jean Povey ’s transactions that eventually lifted
the lid on her sizeable, and lengthy, theft.
It was the lengthy nature of Povey ’s theft that
yesterday saw Judge Philip Connell jail her for
two years and two months in the Hamilton
Judge Connell said although she was a first-
time offender and, up until 2010 — when the
offending began — was a decent citizen, he
could not help but look at the amount stolen
and over how long — five years — that left
him with no option but to send her to prison.
The judge was also dubious about her claims
that she spent all the money on her gambling
addiction, and noted she had spent it on
household and family expenses, including her
daughter’s mechanics bill.
Povey, 58, had earlier admitted two
representative charges of false accounting and
theft by a person in a special relationship.
Her offending occurred over a five year period
between June 10, 2010 and December 21,
2015 — and involved 76 separate fraudulent
transactions to a total of $203,508.
The largest transaction was for $7625.
A new high-tech mapping system
developed by Land Information NZ will
give authorities fighting the spread of
wilding pines their first complete picture
of infestations nationwide.
The pines are a major threat to
ecosystems, native landscapes and farms.
They are estimated to cover more than
two million hectares and are spreading at
Land Information Minister Mark
Mitchell says the new wilding conifer
information system will underpin
the control programme run by MPI,
the Department of Conser vation and
forestry, farming and community groups.
The web-based mapping system
captures real-time information and
comes with a mobile app that authorities
can use. — NZN
Employer unaware of
An Auckland airman is getting first-hand
experience of the constant tension along the
border between North and South Korea.
Flight lieutenant Rob Bexley works in the most
heavily militarised frontier in the world. The
NZ Defence Force officer is helping the United
Nations Command monitor the transportation
corridor in the southern fence line of the 250km-
long demilitarised zone (DMZ).
“The atmosphere in the DMZ is tense,” he said.
“For the South Korean troops stationed
here, the threat from North Korea is real and
The assistant corridor control officer
in the United States-led UN Command
Military Armistice Commission Secretariat
(UNCMAC-S), he says the threat comes not
just from missiles, but also the artillery along the
border and, more recently, drones.
His team, led by a Danish army major, monitors
the western crossing point into North Korea.
It also inspects guard posts and obser vation
posts in the zone’s southern partition to ensure
South Korean compliance.
New Zealand has contributed to the
UNCMAC-S since 2003 and has five members
monitoring the armistice and performing
operational, education, liaison and corridor
control function for the secretariat.
Mr Bexley joined the navy in 2001 after
completing a bachelor’s degree in information
systems at Massey University. He shifted the the
air force in 2012.
As on previous deployments, he has with him
a family Bible that his grandfather and great
grandfather took with them while ser ving during
the two World Wars.
“Although the operations I have been on cannot
be compared to what they fought through, I
brought it as a talisman of sorts to keep me safe.”
NZ airman helping monitor Korean border
Specials available South Island only, price valid until Sunday 23 July 2017 or while stocks last. Trade not supplied. Due to current
Licensing Trust laws, liquor not available at Elles Road, Windsor & Gore. Specials may not be available at all stores. Club Deals are
only available to Clubcard Members at New World South Island stores when they scan their Clubcard at the time of purchase.
Wattie's For Baby
Just Juice Fruit
Mud House 750ml,
excludes Pinot Noir &
Pams Butter 500g
Asahi Super Dry
330ml 12 Pack Bottles
Fresh Quality Mark
Beef Rump Steak
Huggies Bulk Ultra-Dry
Nappies 32-54s or
Ultimate Nappy-Pants 26-31s
* savings based on non-promotional price. Exclusions apply.
Links Archive July 18th 2017 July 20th 2017 Navigation Previous Page Next Page