Peters: gone, on the evidence

Expat billionaire Owen Glenn’s version of the events surrounding his donation to Winston Peters legal fund is supported by telephone records and an independent witness. (More detailed account here.) Although Peters has yet to appear before Parliament’s Privileges Committee, it is difficult to see how he can salvage anything of his reputation for honesty now.

Top horse trainer Paul Moroney has provided an affidavit to the Privileges Committee saying that he was at a lunch at Karaka Horse Sales in 2006 at which Peters thanked Glenn for his help.

“During the luncheon discussion, part of the conversation between Mr Peters and Mr Glenn involved Mr Peters thanking Mr Glenn for his help to him.

“Mr Glenn had told me before the lunch that he was meeting Mr Peters over the lunch, because he had made a donation to assist Mr Peters fund his legal expenses concerning the Tauranga election result. I recall Mr Glenn telling me that Mr Peters had contacted him to ask for his help with this.”

Glenn has provided a record from 14 December 2005 of a call to Peters’ mobile, which Glenn says was to “inform him that I agreed to contribute”.

All other things being equal, an independent witness’s testimony trumps that of any other witnesses, such as Peters’ lawyer Brian Henry, in a court. Documentary evidence that confirms one side of the story also carries a great deal of weight when it comes to a conflict of evidence. On the face of it, Peters has lied to Parliament and to Prime Minister Clark about knowing about the Glenn donation. Serious stuff. But we will have to wait until tomorrow before demanding the axe. Due process.

Glenn’ also revealed that he consulted Labour Party President Mike Williams before donating to Peters’ legal fund, to ensure it would not be seen by Labour as “being unhelpful to its own interests”. We need to know more about that before we can start drawing conclusions, but that hasn’t stopped the righties of late from forming up lynching mobs, so expect an outpouring of froth in the blogosphere.

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9 Responses to “Peters: gone, on the evidence”

  1. Inventory2 Says:

    Good analysis JP – some honesty from the left is a rare beast today – your buddies at The Standard obviously don’t think that anything else is happening today other than Mallard leaking stolen policies.

    I2, Thanks for the comment. I saw that none of the punters in your sweepstake on diversions thought of another release of leaked policies…

  2. Inventory2 Says:

    No mate, it was too predictable! Sheesh, that pint is going to taste good!!

  3. Julie Says:

    I particularly appreciate your last para JP, as I was getting the impression from the right blogs that Williams had virtually matchmade them, but I can see from your post that isn’t the case.

  4. jafapete Says:

    Absolutely right, Julie. Further, here’s what Glenn told the PC: “He said he was told by Mr Williams that Labour did not object to him helping Mr Peters…. In a private and personal discussion with Ms Clark I told her that I had made a donation to Mr Peters for his legal costs. I also told her of my conversation with the Labour Party’s president Mike Williams before I agreed to make that donation back in 2005.”

    Sounds as though Clark had not been told by Williams that Glenn had checked out the donation. Glenn does not even say that he told Williams that he would donate, simply that he checked that it would hurt Labour.

  5. zin Says:

    “froth” – such an excellent summation

    let’s assume witnessed evidence stands.. the issue before the PC is whether declaration of pecuniary interest is substantiated.. yes? But to my recollection this was not the original specific. Anyone recall what was.. and how the evidence has been culled.. my point is whether we have a genuine parliamentary procedure here.. or not?

  6. jafapete Says:

    Correct Zin. I wondered whether I should remind everyone what the PC’s supposed to be doing. However, what Peters knew and when might determine the question of whether a gift and/or a debt ought to have been disclosed on the Register of Pecuniary Interests and the name of the person who discharged any debt, which was the original issue. We shall see.

    I guess the issue of the veracity of Peters’ declarations having been raised, it does need to be addressed in any event. I’m inclined to think that the public might be able to distinguish more of the self-interest motivating various parties than they are given credit for.

    Full terms in this Herald article: http://www.nzherald.co.nz/section/story.cfm?c_id=280&objectid=10525785

  7. AndrewE Says:

    I think the public are very aware of the self-interest most parties have in this saga. But not in the way you mean.

    You might be surprised, Andrew.

  8. zin Says:

    tks for that jafapete,

    follow up ? Do we know at whose instigation the PC proceedings were rendered public.. complaints are filed, the PC(perhaps chair) decides but given the highly shrill and somewhat explosive nature of self-interested parties revealed I sense that public disclosure would be subject to judgement in that same “court of public opinion” as anything else ought be..

  9. zin Says:

    Oops! correction, I meant jafapete, of course

    That’s okay zin. I don’t mind being confused with the hottest new blog on the block.

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