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Dunedin men's rights breached in ACC raids Unreasonable search and seizure

#1 User is offline   not their victim 

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Posted 08 May 2013 - 03:42 PM


Dunedin men's rights breached in ACC raids
NZ NewswireMay 8, 2013, 2:38 pm


A High Court judge has ruled two Dunedin men had their rights breached when police raided their homes looking for evidence they were working while claiming ACC benefits.

In a decision released on Wednesday on the 2006 raids, Justice Christian Whata said Bruce Van Essen and Jason Patterson were entitled under the Bill of Rights Act to be free from unreasonable search and seizure.

ACC suspected the men were working - Mr Van Essen running a website business and Mr Patterson conducting surfing lessons - while claiming benefits.

It employed private detectives Peter Gibbons and Graham Scott to investigate the respective cases.

However, when police were brought in to carry out searches, the warrants they used were unlawful because they were poorly drafted and didn't have enough information from ACC to justify the raids.

Mr Gibbons was also the father-in-law of Constable Andrew Henderson, who looked after the warrant for Mr Van Essen.

Justice Whata said the searches had gone too far and irrelevant personal information had been seized. There had been an "almost forensic interrogation into the most private spaces and affairs of both [men]".

Both men also had their seized property kept from them for a long time.

Mr Van Essen was the worst affected, so was awarded $10,000 in damages.

However, Justice Whata dismissed the allegation that police were "mindless stooges" for ACC and that police and ACC investigators had acted in bad faith.

An Independent Police Conduct Authority report in 2008 slammed senior Dunedin police for the way they handled the case.

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#2 User is offline   not their victim 

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Posted 08 May 2013 - 03:43 PM

wohoo.....


congrats....
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#3 User is offline   scared 

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Posted 08 May 2013 - 04:03 PM

Good on ya, too bad it wasn't way more for all you have had to go thru.
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#4 User is offline   BLURB 

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Posted 08 May 2013 - 04:11 PM

View PostHuggy, on 05 May 2013 - 08:10 PM, said:

The decision is out in the High Court case, I cannot post my version up on here because the public version which no doubt will be available soon on the internet will have suppression on some items.

In short, the case was successful on some grounds and not on others. Compensation has been awarded for a breach of NZBORA along with the Crown having to do a declaration which will become public, also full indemnification on all legal costs has been awarded (a significant sum). This was never about the money but for the wrongs that the parties had done.

Its sad to have to think that the costs including legal costs to all parties probably come close to half a million dollars which of course the tax payer will have to fund, when all along the Crown could have conceded the searches were unlawful many years ago when the action was filed against them rather than wait until the first day of court to do so.

The decision is critical towards ACC, even though ACC weren't a party, and is also critical towards Police and this will in due time be brought into the media when the declaration is completed.

Overall I am very happy with the decision as the wrong doers have been shown to be wrong. Certainly the Police admitted at the trial that they have done no more warrants down this way for ACC since the crap hit the fan and that alone is a good thing.

I can't comment much more on here at this stage except that the decision is being looked at closely as there appears to be a huge error of law.

There is more in the pipeline which I cant reveal at this stage, except that if ACC think they got away with dumping everyone else in it, then they had better think again.

As I said above, I will not comment any further on this. I wanted you to know that the decision is out before you come across it on the net and that as a whole, I feel free again to move forward.


I get the impression that we haven't heard the last of this issue. Again, good on you Huggy.

http://accforum.org/...general-and-ors
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#5 User is offline   Huggy 

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Posted 08 May 2013 - 04:23 PM

Hmmmm isnt it amazing how information gets out there.

Blurb you are right this probably isn't the end of the matter. There are some very high legal minds looking through the decision with a fine tooth comb.

Oh and if ACC thought they have gotten away with this then they better think again because if the Police were found guilty of breaching NZBORA, then I would say this would also apply to ACC. And of course, there is no statute of limitations for filing in the courts on a breach of NZBORA.................say no more.
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#6 User is offline   Huggy 

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Posted 08 May 2013 - 04:36 PM

Direct link to the above article

http://www.3news.co....33/Default.aspx
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#7 User is offline   Alan Thomas 

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Posted 08 May 2013 - 05:02 PM

Huggy obviously $10,000 doesn't even begin to address what has happened to you. I would suggest you address the individual decision-makers rather than the administration. It we saw larger amounts awarded and a a few bankruptcies for those who abuse the power granted to them only then will they be more careful. The ones that have knowingly broken the law of course those who should face criminal prosecution as well.
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#8 User is offline   Sparrow 

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Posted 08 May 2013 - 06:47 PM

Huggy. The courts are just corrupt and all in favour of ACC

i wish you well as you continue the struggle for your rights.
I just feel sick reading this decision!
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#9 User is offline   Huggy 

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Posted 08 May 2013 - 06:50 PM

Can you post the decision up Sparrow I only have my version which is supposed to have info suppressed on the public version.
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#10 User is offline   Campy 

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Posted 08 May 2013 - 07:57 PM

Huggy said:

1367987789[/url]' post='159856']
Direct link to the above article

http://www.3news.co....33/Default.aspx


Great news.
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#11 User is offline   Sparrow 

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Posted 08 May 2013 - 11:06 PM

View PostHuggy, on 08 May 2013 - 06:50 PM, said:

Can you post the decision up Sparrow I only have my version which is supposed to have info suppressed on the public version.



Sorry Huggy i used the wrong word. I just read it on ?Yahoo news and here on forum!!!
Judges are favouring ACC everyway.
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#12 User is offline   Alan Thomas 

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Posted 08 May 2013 - 11:18 PM

Did Justice Whata not find the ACC and Police acted in bad faith?
Why?
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#13 User is offline   Huggy 

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Posted 09 May 2013 - 07:19 AM

ACC were not in the proceedings, but something else is in the pipeline for that.

As for the Police, you will have to wait until the public decision is released. Options are being looked at is all I can say.
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#14 User is offline   Aldri Gi Opp 

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Posted 09 May 2013 - 08:28 AM

I would be interested in yarning otr regarding the comments re police. I too have an acc/nzp related issue. Pm me. Congrats by the way ... any decision thus is a good decision no matter how belated. We need a *like* button!
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#15 User is offline   Huggy 

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Posted 09 May 2013 - 09:30 AM

As it appears the suppressed decision has been made public, and I do not have a copy of the suppressed decision, I have redacted the relevant footnote and will upload the decision for you to read today at some stage.

I can't make a lot of comment because at this stage options are being looked at.

I will also start a new thread when I do the upload for ease to locate the download.
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