Thursday, July 10, 2008

Da Gangs, Da Gangs - oh won't someone do somethink about dem gangs

SFO 'a sacrificial lamb' for Govt's gang crackdown
The Serious Fraud Office is being turned into a "sacrificial lamb" in a misguided attempt by the Government to be seen to be doing something about gangs, MPs were told yesterday. Former SFO director David Bradshaw told Parliament's law and order select committee he had been blindsided by the decision to scrap the SFO, end its special powers and roll its functions into a new organised crime agency run by the police. In documents Attorney-General Michael Cullen released this week to NZPA after an appeal to the Ombudsman, Mr Bradshaw warned that the moves would end high-end white-collar criminal investigations and prosecutions in New Zealand. A proposal to ditch special SFO powers would "sound the death knell for fraud investigations in New Zealand". Mr Bradshaw reiterated his concerns yesterday and said the SFO had been the victim of a "bizarre" policy process. The SFO had not been told of plans to disband it despite months of "talkfest" meetings with the working group looking at setting up the new agency. Mr Bradshaw said that when he was told of the decision, he was given no opportunity to correct "misleading" advice. Ministers would not see him and a final Cabinet paper on this issue did not mention any of the SFO's concerns, despite his requests for them to be included. It is normal for dissenting opinions to be included in Cabinet papers. Mr Bradshaw said most serious and complex fraud was not organised crime. He believed the Government's decision was in reaction to gang violence. In one memo to Dr Cullen, he said: "The cruel shooting of one baby seems to be the raison d'etre for changing the face of law enforcement in New Zealand. Is there anything really broke?

I’ve blogged for sometime about our paranoid neurosis when it comes to da gangs, da gangs – IF we want to hurt gangs use the SFO in its original format – you can attack the financial structures they use with the no right to silence powers, but as Bradshow points out this paranoid neurosis we have with da gangs, da gangs has warped into some ugly decisions that have destroyed the original SFO and is pushing for new powers that will allow the Police to break into your home and plant secret spy cameras that will record you for 4 days without ANY judicial oversight. Da gangs, da gangs is being used as a reason to implement some incredible erosions of our civil liberties while destroying the SFO at the same time as we have so many Financial Company collapses that require the SFO’s powers right now. Just as with our prison policy, we have allowed anger to be whipped into hate and that hate is being manipulated to pass powers that we would NEVER normally agree to. Hate is warping our public policy and Politicians terrified of being on the wrong side of the lynch mob are showing no leadership in defying that talkback reactionary thinking.