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RAW DATA: PM requests inquiry into Dotcom Case after illegal govt intercepts

RAW DATA: Release from the PM's office

Prime Minister John Key today announced he has requested an inquiry by the Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security into the circumstances of unlawful interception of communications of certain individuals by the Government Communications Security Bureau (GCSB).

Mr Key says the Crown has filed a memorandum in the High Court in the Megaupload case advising the Court and affected parties that the GCSB had acted unlawfully while assisting the Police to locate certain individuals subject to arrest warrants issued in the case. The Bureau had acquired communications in some instances without statutory authority.

After being informed about the matter by the Director of the GCSB on September 17, the Prime Minister referred the Bureau’s actions to the Inspector-General, Hon Paul Neazor. The Inspector-General is an independent statutory officer with the power to enquire into any matter related to a government intelligence agency’s compliance with the law.

Mr Key says he has also asked the Inspector-General to recommend any measures he considered necessary to prevent the issue from happening again.

Mr Key expressed his disappointment that unlawful acts had taken place.

“I expect our intelligence agencies to operate always within the law. Their operations depend on public trust.

“I look forward to the Inspector-General’s inquiry getting to the heart of what took place and what can be done about it,” says Mr Key. “Because this is also a matter for the High Court in its consideration of the Megaupload litigation, I am unable to comment further.”

Comments and questions

Good work John Key

Hopefully you will also put a stop to the nonsense that Kim Dotcom is currently facing and ensure true justice is done. The Government should also ensure no one has to go through such Amerciacn contrived nonsense in the future - the NZ police deserve a right royal bollocking on the way they acted when arresting Dotcom.

Well, well ... spooks have gone off the reservation. Further jeopardising the FBI case against Dotcom no doubt, wonder how much the Americans have to answer for here leading our best and brightest astray? NB: they ferreted hard-drive evidence out of the country illegally.

Pity he didnt take the front foot action with John Banks - his indignation in this matter is hypocritical

Suspect this is damage control to water down the appearance that Keys favoured Banks over Dotcom. It's all politics!

Isn't there a bigger issue here, regarding this:

"GCSB had acted unlawfully while assisting the Police to locate certain individuals subject to arrest warrants issued in the case. "

I'd be interested for NBR to follow up with an explanation on the legitimate scope of operations for GCSB. I've no idea, but had just assumed it would be limited to issues of national security (terrorism, etc), which I'd have no problem with, but not finding people involved with a copyright case such as this. Isn't there big distance between national security and a mere criminal trial ... are GCSB using their huge powers to eavesdrop and invade privacy on other criminal jurisdictions: cases of theft, drug supply, and so forth?

I'm more than a little uncomfortable with police, when their powers run out, then being able to go to a central intelligence agency to continue their investigations for them, simply because they have further privacy busting powers.

NZ Police have pandered to US federal law enforcement and really should have stood back and ensured they were acting within NZ law. Stupidity on their behalf - US laws are not NZ laws. Make them play the game under NZ laws and stop trying to interfere by muscling into our country and doing what they like. DotCom is just one example.

I guess the up-side of this fiasco is that Dotcom will walk free. May be, in Machiavellian way, the police c*cked everything up on purpose...

The Police action was under instruction from the chief - he who leads NZ. Let you work out who that was.

What rubbish Maggie - the two are completely unrelated. Dotcom got in a grump because Banks wouldn't get him a special mattress when he was in prison.

No, he got in a grump when the NZ police acted illegally and his two faced friend John Banks scuttled like a cockroach for cover.

Shades of Cult Davidian Waco or Ruby Ridge? When even busts of heavily-armed drug rings don't get this sort of firepower, you have to wonder how much FBI-incited bravado was involved. Sure, the authorities have a job to do, but breaking out the heavy artillery for a white-collar suspect seems more than a little OTT.

key is only after some credibility himself

All very well the PM calling for an enquiry now. The PM himself is the Minister in charge of the security Service isn't he? Yet maintained just after Kim Dotcoms arrest that he had never heard of the man until just days before the raid.

How come JOhn Key. You are the Prime minister and the minister in charge of Security services. Either you knew and lied to us, or your staff in at least two ministries of yours, knew and chose not to brief you.
Which is it John? Come on come clean with us please?
This gross display of pandering to US interests is going to cost NZ plenty.

That makes two politicians with memory failure. Epidemic?

You guys are so slow outta the blocks it is not funny, all Politicians!! local especially are only in the game for their own self satisfaction and we vote them in, they are supposed to represent us and run our country on our behalf, and in all forms all they ever do is screw us the employers and screw us big time, so these sort of situations come as no surprise what so ever.........THINK ABOUT IT.

John Key is both PM and Minister in charge of Security. Thus if his staff broke the law he should have been briefed surely. His problem with this is that he has claimed to have never heard of Kim Dot Com at all until a few days before the raid when he signed off on the raid as the relevant Minister.

He must have know or has been deliberately bypassed by his staff.
Which is it John? The incompetence by Police, Security service and all will cost this country plenty. We are a Sovereign Nation lets start behaving as one and NOT pander to the good ol US of A.

The GCSB probably accessed the information on behalf of the NSA to feed to the FBI, but forgot the rules and accidentally used it themselves instead of denying all knowledge.

Seriously - how can anyone believe a word SHONKY John Key says?

The GCSB is a Public Service Department with its Head Office in Wellington. The Director of the GCSB reports directly to the Minister responsible for the GCSB, traditionally the Prime Minister. The current Director is Ian Fletcher who was appointed in January 2012. The current Director is Ian Fletcher who was appointed in January 2012.
The GCSB is part of New Zealand's Intelligence and Security community. The structure of this community is further described in the paper Securing Our Nation's Safety on the website of the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet.
The GCSB Head Office is in the Pipitea House on Pipitea building in Pipitea Street, Wellington. The Bureau is divided into four functional areas:
Foreign Intelligence;
Information Assurance & Cyber; and
Mission Enablement.
The Bureau has two communications collection or interception stations: the HF radio interception and direction-finding station at Tangimoana, and the satellite communications interception station at Waihopai, near Blenheim.
The Bureau has approximately 330 staff in a wide range of disciplines including foreign-language experts, communications and cryptography specialists through to engineers, technicians and support staff. Approximately 30% of the workforce are women.
The Bureau's budget is set at $56.4 million for the 2011/2012 financial year.

Penny Bright

'Anti-corruption campaigner'

So this place is being run by unaccountable power hungry highly paid wannabees? What's new? We have Len Brown. Everyone should know if he can get away with what he's doing, why shouldn't many other publicly funded organisations do the same? Anyway, what Brown is doing is far more serious isn't it? he will bankrupt Auckland, the sppoks won't.