Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Urewera 4: hung jury

From October 15th: ‘We consider the inability of the jury to make a decision on Count 1 in the Urewera case a victory. The inability of the jury to make a decision on Count 1 in the Urewera case is evidence that the crown’s story doesn’t stack up. We have always said that this charge was laid specifically in order that the crown could use evidence it knew was illegal in order to secure convictions on firearms charges. It is a stitch up from start to finish’ said Valerie Morse from the October 15th Solidarity group.

‘The Supreme Court’s decision in September last year stated unequivocally that the evidence was illegal. It couldn’t be used against those charged only under the Arms Act. For the five who were charged under section 98A – Participation in an organised criminal group, the evidence was admissible, despite it being illegal. This charge should never have been allowed.’

‘Operation 8 was a multimillion dollar police operation designed to harass Tuhoe and political activists. After six years, the crown has secured a few firearms convictions based on illegal evidence. This whole episode reveals the sad face of a racist country determined to quash Maori aspirations for sovereignty.’

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