Wednesday, 28 October 2015

Court rules hacked computer files are 'peoperty'

This is the fascist state writ large.


In their raid on Nicky Hager's home ealier last year the police used the chance to trawl for information to frame Hager and were illegally given access to his bank records without so much as a court order.

Now the court finds that hacked computer files are 'property' and Hager may face criminal charges.

In that case we can expect Cameron  Slater to face similar charges for stealing hacking computer files as in the case of Matthew Blomfield which is discussed seperately. But no, the government, the police and now (it seems) subservient judiciary are not interested. Slater was acting in the interests of the National Party, and therefore, by extension, the State.

When the judiciary upholds the police in this case, the police go after Nicky Hager but Cameron Slater remains untouched you KNOW that rule of law is just a fig.

Court decision puts Hager back in frame

Ruling that hacked files used for book are property means charges possible

Police will not say whether Nicky Hager is a witness or a suspect. Photo / Mark Mitchell

28 October, 2015

Dirty Politics author Nicky Hager may face criminal charges over accepting the hacked material used to write the bombshell book, according to documents obtained by the Herald.

Police will not say whether the investigative journalist is again a suspect, instead of simply a witness, after a pivotal Supreme Court decision which ruled computer files were property.
Documents show the new definition from the court puts Hager back in the frame over the computer files he was given by a hacker which he used as the basis for his book.
An Official Information Act response to Hager's lawyers in June saw police lawyer Carolyn Richardson explain there had been a decision - apparently just before the journalist's house was searched - to treat him as an "unco-operative witness as opposed to a suspect". It was based on legal advice over an earlier Court of Appeal decision which said computer files weren't property, she said.
But she said his status could change depending on the Supreme Court's view of computer files as property. "It may be that the judgment will have some bearing on whether or not [Hager] has himself committed an offence as well as Rawshark."
The letter supports an affidavit from Detective Inspector Dave Lynch, quoted in submissions from Hager's lawyers in a current court challenge over a search warrant executed on his home. It described the lead officer in the Rawshark inquiry as holding the same views, with Hager's lawyer saying it "suggests Mr Hager may yet be charged depending on the outcome" of the Supreme Court decision.
Crown submissions stated Hager was a witness but "had it become apparent that he had committed an offence, then of course consideration would have had to have been given to charging him".
Otago University law professor Andrew Geddis said the Supreme Court decision was focused on one small part of the Crimes Act. But he said the logic behind the court's decision would likely "follow through" to the way the courts handled other parts of the law - including receiving stolen goods.
"Rawshark will have obtained property in breach of [the law]. If Rawshark obtained property it's hard to see those files are not still property when they get passed on to Mr Hager."
Any shift in Hager's status as a suspect or a witness could also impact the decision on his High Court challenge to the search warrant executed on his home in October 2014. Hager's lawyers had insisted there was a higher hurdle to get a search warrant against somebody who was a witness - as Hager was on the day of the search - than for a suspect.
Hager was a "suspect" at the time detectives sought bank records from Westpac without a legal order, police said yesterday.
A police spokeswoman said the bank could do so under a "letter of agreement" with the NZ Bankers' Association. There is nothing in the letter of agreement which deals with the Privacy Act, customers' information or disclosing personal details to police.
Meanwhile, Westpac yesterday announced it had changed its internal policy for handing over customer information to police without a legal order - but has not said how it has done so.
David Fisher gave evidence as an "expert witness" in the Hager v Police case under High Court rules that require an "overriding duty to assist the court impartially on relevant matters".

Nicky Hager demands answers from bank

Journalist Nicky Hager is putting pressure on Westpac Bank to reveal why it shared his private account details with the police.

Nicky Hager walking into Wellington High Court 15/07/15Photo: RNZ / Alexander Robertson

27 October, 2015

The search last October was part of a police investigation into the hacking of blogger Cameron Slater's computer.

The information was gathered by detectives investigating the hacking of blogger Cameron Slater's computer a year ago. The bank gave the information without any court order.

Mr Hager said today he was seeking a "full and frank disclosure" of the extent of the breach from Westpac.

He said 10 months of banking transactions from all of his accounts were handed over to the police without an order.

Over the weekend, Mr Hager said he still banks with Westpac.

The legality of a police search of Nicky Hager's house as part of the investigation into the hacking was challenged in a High Court hearing earlier this year.

The court has not yet released its decision.

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