Tag: Justice System

Gordon Campbell on the security services review

Column – Gordon Campbell T o no-ones real surprise, the Cullen/Reddy review of the security services has recommended an extension of the powers of the Government Communications Security Bureau (GCSB), mainly to legally enable the agency to use its technological expertise … Gordon Campbell on the security services review, and Bernie Sanders’ victory against the TPP To no-one’s real surprise, the Cullen/Reddy review of the security services has recommended an extension of the powers of the Government Communications Security Bureau (GCSB), mainly to legally enable the agency to use its technological expertise to spy on New Zealanders. So… a review that was triggered by the GCSB breaking the letter (and the clear intent) of the existing law– which clearly forbade it to engage in the surveillance of New Zealanders – has now rewarded the miscreants, by legalizing their behavior. Yep, that’s the way to engender public confidence – give more power to the foxes, to enable them to better guard the henhouse. Why should we, in future, place our trust in organisations that have shown in the recent past that they either cannot understand or – more credibly – simply do not respect the boundaries placed on their activities by the current law? The Cullen/Reddy review makes much of the need to integrate the various laws governing the SIS and the GCSB, which are depicted as being confusing and...

Read More

High Court can’t make Groser provide TPPA information faster

Press Release – Professor Jane Kelsey High Court says it cant make Groser provide TPPA information faster for now This week we went back to court to challenge Trade Minister Grosers stalling tactics over the release of information on the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement …High Court says it can’t make Groser provide TPPA information faster ‘for now’ ‘This week we went back to court to challenge Trade Minister Groser’s stalling tactics over the release of information on the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement negotiations, following a High Court order that he reconsider the Official Information Act request I made last January’, said University of Auckland law professor Jane Kelsey, first applicant in the case. The Minister took a month to respond to the court’s decision, despite the urgency of the request and the imminence of the signing of the TPPA. He then set out a process for reviewing the request, rather than an actual response. The ministry had so far located just one category of information: New Zealand’s negotiating mandates dating back to the start of the negotiations. However, the officials were too busy and the Minister was overseas, so no response could be provided until 5 February 2016, conveniently the day after the expected signing of the agreement. The applicants asked the court to order the Minister to provide the information by mid-December. In a decision released yesterday, Justice Collins acknowledged...

Read More

New Zealand’s Most Powerful Lawyers Named

Press Release – LawFuel Ministry of Justice CEO Andrew Bridgman (No. 1) takes the top spotout of 50 on LawFuels inaugural rankinig of New Zealands most powerful lawyers.New Zealand’s Most Powerful Lawyers Named: Justice Ministry Head Tops the List Wellington (November 16, 2015) – LawFuel.co.nz – Ministry of Justice CEO Andrew Bridgman (No. 1) takes the top spotout of 50 on LawFuel’s inaugural rankinig of New Zealand’s most powerful lawyers. The “LawFuel Power List” ranks 50 lawyers throughout the public and private sectors in New Zealand,ranking their influence and affect upon the practice, administration and perception of law in the country. Among the top 10 are retiring Solicitor General Michael Heron QC, while sitting in the number 2position is the Commerce Commission chief,Mark Berry. The top ranking woman in the LawFuel power list is head of the Auckland Council’s legal division, Kathryn Anderson while high profile woman lawyer Mai Chen sits at Number 14 on the list. In total the Power List has 15 women with Number 50 at the tail lend being the staunch opponent ofthe Trans Pacific Partnership agreement and Auckland university academic Jane Kelsey. The top ranking barrister is Auckland QC Alan Galbraith who is closely followed by Wellington QC and Supreme Court appellate lawyer David Goddard QC. The growing importance of in-house legal teams is reflected in the increased number of lawyers working in both...

Read More

Groser avoids principled reconsideration of TPPA OIA

Press Release – Professor Jane Kelsey A month ago the High Court ordered Trade Minister Tim Groser to reconsider an Official Information Act request from Professor Jane Kelsey, dated January 2015, relating to the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA).12 November 2015 For immediate release Groser avoids principled reconsideration of TPPA information request despite Court orders A month ago the High Court ordered Trade Minister Tim Groser to reconsider an Official Information Act request from Professor Jane Kelsey, dated January 2015, relating to the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA). ‘The Minister has finally responded, fobbing off the request with further delays and procedural wrangling, despite a request that he treat the matter with urgency’, Professor Kelsey said. In relation to Cabinet mandates, one of the categories requested, the Minister says the documents have been collated but no officials will be available to review them until after 5 February 2016 – conveniently the first date on which the TPPA can be signed following the expiry of President Obama’s 90-day notification to the US Congress of his intention to do so. Professor Kelsey notes there is no guarantee when or if any of those documents will actually be released. The remaining categories of information are deemed to require too much research and collation and Professor Kelsey has been asked to reduce their scope – something, she observes, could and should have been sought back...

Read More

First official TPP text confirms IP concerns

Press Release – InternetNZ InternetNZ is pleased that the Trans Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) is finally out in the open. InternetNZ CEO Jordan Carter said our concerns about the IP Chapter are confirmed by the final text.First official TPP text confirms IP concerns InternetNZ is pleased that the Trans Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) is finally out in the open. InternetNZ CEO Jordan Carter said our concerns about the IP Chapter are confirmed by the final text. “Based on our first read, the IP Chapter is the same as the version leaked last month. For New Zealand, this means longer copyright terms and a new offence for removing digital locks on content, even where there is no copyright infringement. “Until now, New Zealand has not criminalised people just for bypassing a TPM ‘digital lock.’ Article 18.68 of the IP chapter could change that, meaning people who tinker with technology could be made into criminals. “New Zealand depends on innovation to overcome our small size and distance from the rest of the world. We must ensure that legitimate tinkering, which does not infringe copyright, is still allowed.” The TPP also requires longer copyright terms, which the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade has said will cost consumers $55 million a year. With the TPP we are getting US-style copyright terms, says Carter. “New Zealanders may have to ask whether we can...

Read More