Thursday, October 19, 2017

Legal advice.

Probably one of the most common questions I get asked is am I going to go to jail. Often the person will have no previous history with the police or courts. Just to talk generally there are three types of cases that attract prison sentences. They are serious drug offending, serious dishonesty offending and serious violent offending. The law has for a long time said these types of offending attract what is called deterrent sentencing. In other words the main issue is to make an example of the person to stop him from doing it again or her. It is also done to prevent others from doing the offending by showing what happens to people who do. This is called general deterrence. This means also that a persons individual and personal circumstances are less likely to be taken into account in reducing their sentence. For a person to be eligible for home detention which is a bracelet at home they must be in a position where they are going to receive a sentence of two years imprisonment or less. A guilty plea at first instance attracts a sentence discount of up to a quarter or 25%. 

Labels: , , , , , ,

Monday, October 16, 2017

Operation 8 unfinished business.

Operation 8 was ten years ago. There were opportunities missed. Firstly the opportunity to challenge the Crowns jurisdiction over the Ureweras and Tuhoe was not taken up. In Canada indigenous tribes charged with breaking the gambling Laws challenged Ottawas jurisdiction. The trial was the longest legal case in Canadian History and an important milestone in Canadian Treaty jurisprudence. That opportunity was sitting right there to be taken. The case reached the Canadian Supreme Court R v Pamajewon. Could a challenge have been mounted as to the effect of the Arms Act within the Ureweras. I am certain it could have. Unfortunately such a concept was too much for some. I regret not going on a solo mission. The other issue that did not surface but which should have was the involvement of NZ intelligence agencies in the Operation. The level of technology used in the bugging of some participants was such that it could only have been provided by agencies further on up the line. The SIS certainly but further up the GCSB and external agencies. America was in the process of exporting its Terrorism legislation around the western world. I am certain that the GCSB spied on New Zealand born targets in Operation 8. It is an issue that will only be sorted out by a public inquiry. If it did occurr the trial would never have taken place as all evidence would have been thrown out. The illegality in the case extended far beyond the Police. It is a source of shame to the Labout Party which will never be expunged that they allowed Operation 8 to occur. I remember  cross-examining the NZ Army Boss in Iraq at the trial. After I finished another trial counsel said to me "I wouldn't have had the balls to do that'. I do believe the Crown regretted calling that particular witness. 

Labels: , , , , , , ,