NZ "terrorism" in perspective   |   Indigenous peoples' rights

Rights ignored in police crackdown

24 October 2007

A Tuhoe academic says the police seem to feel they can ignore his people's civil rights by waving around the Suppression of Terrorism Act.

Tamati Kruger says last week's arrests in the eastern Bay of Plenty were marked by what seemed to be deliberate misinformation by police.

As well as the 17 people arrested around the country and charged with firearms offences, a number of people were arrested in Ruatoki and taken to Rotorua for questioning before being released.

Mr Kruger says police at Te Ngae station used underhand tricks to deny people legal representation.

"A lawyer turns up and says Iím here to represent Mr X, would you please sir advise Mr X that I am here, the lawyer is then told Mr X does not want to see you. After the interview we find that Mr X was not even told," Mr Kruger says.

People were also told their friends or relatives had been released, when in fact they had just been moved to a different police station.

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