David Garrett - Asshole of the Week Award | The Jackal

6 Jul 2011

David Garrett - Asshole of the Week Award

Yesterday it was reported that an investigation into what David Garrett told the courts in 2005 when he appeared on a charge of stealing the identity of a dead baby to obtain a passport, found no criminal offending and Garrett would not be charged with perjury. What a farce!

The Sensible Sentencing Trust member and former Act Party MP on law and order came under increasing pressure in Sept 2010 when it was revealed that he'd created a false identity.

After suppression of the case was lifted, it was revealed that Garrett went to a graveyard to get a deceased babies details, and that his passport application included a photograph of himself, disguised with glasses and dyed hair. He kept the 1984 scam secret until 2005, when he was caught by Police in a wide ranging investigation into false passports.
"I was duly put before the court and admitted obtaining a passport by false pretenses. After submissions by my lawyer, I was discharged without conviction," Garrett said.
The judge gave Garrett name suppression to spare his reputation. The then leader of the Act Party, Rodney Hide was privy to the information but decided to keep Garrett's 1984 scam secret. I wonder what else is currently being kept secret by Minister's of the Crown that should be disclosed?

In light of his fraudulence, Garrett was clearly not an appropriate spokesman on law and order. The revelation of the identity theft to procure a false passport came just two days after the discovery that Garrett has a 2002 assault conviction, from when he practiced as a lawyer in Tonga.

Garrett, who pushed for the "three strikes, you're out" policy said at the time that he was not a hypocrite. Stealing a babies identity to commit fraud and lying about an assault conviction while being a spokesperson on law and order is complete hypocrisy in my book. His sexual harassment of a female Act MP in 2009, makes Act's zero tolerance for crime meme a sick joke!

Now we have the Police failing to apply the law properly for what is a clear cut case of perjury. However being that Garrett's non disclosure of his prior convictions may have determined the judges ruling, Garrett should be charged with obstruction of justice by violating an order of the court. The Judicature Act 1908 No 89 states that:
56C Contempt of court
(1) If any person -

(a) assaults, threatens, intimidates, or wilfully insults a Judge, or any Registrar, or any officer of the court, or any juror, or any witness, during his sitting or attendance in court, or in going to or returning from the court; or

(b) wilfully interrupts or obstructs the proceedings of the court or otherwise misbehaves in court; or

(c) wilfully and without lawful excuse disobeys any order or direction of the court in the course of the hearing of any proceedings -

any constable or officer of the court, with or without the assistance of any other person, may, by order of the Judge, take the offender into custody and detain him until the rising of the court.

(2) In any such case as aforesaid, the Judge, if he thinks fit, may sentence the offender to imprisonment for any period not exceeding 3 months, or sentence him to pay a fine not exceeding $1,000 for every such offence; and in default of payment of any such fine may direct that the offender be imprisoned for any period not exceeding 3 months, unless the fine is sooner paid.

(3) Nothing in this section shall limit or affect any power or authority of the court to punish any person for contempt of court in any case to which this section does not apply.

David Garrett was ordered to disclose his prior convictions in the 2005 hearing into his fraudulent behaviour. By willfully and without lawful excuse disobeying the courts direction, Garrett is in contempt of court and should be charged accordingly.

He swore on the bible that he had told the truth. Perjury is a sin in the eyes of all religions, and the disregard for such an oath implies a loss of faith that goes deeper than merely covering up a material crime.

Garrett should serve a prison sentence and/or pay a fine, as would normally be required of perjurers. He should be barred from practicing law because he obviously does not have any morals and is dishonest. Not holding him to account for his crimes sends the wrong message to those still in power who may have similar nondisclosure.

Garrett failed to provide information that is required by law in the false passport court case and to Parliament prior to becoming a Minister of the Crown. For him to escape without punishment for this serious criminality is unacceptable.
That's not all that's wrong with this picture though. John Boscawen blogged yesterday on Act's website welcoming the news that the Police investigation into allegations of possible fraud by Garrett has ended with a finding that there "was no criminal behaviour on Mr Garrett’s part."

Really! No criminal behaviour on Garrett's part? What about the 2002 assault conviction. The babies identity theft was clearly criminal behaviour, with Garrett escaping a criminal conviction being criminal as well if you ask me. Boscawen crows like the Police decision is some sort of vindication of Garrett's innocence:
“I’m delighted for David Garrett that he now has legal closure in this matter. David can be proud of the contribution he made in his short time as an MP, making New Zealanders safer with his Three Strikes legislation. Now that a thorough investigation has found there are no valid reasons to lay charges against him, he should be left alone to get on with his life," Boscawen said.
Talk about delusional! Not only do we have a case where David Garrett lied in a court of law concerning his prior convictions, we have the Police saying that this is allowable. It’s a clear indication of one law for the rich and another for the rest of us. It really is looking like a cover up because he's white and wealthy. That's not the kind of "democracy" that I want to live in.

Consider the Police Association President Greg O’Connor who decided that Tiki Taane wasn't allowed to flout the sub judice rule by making public statements, but the Police were allowed to speak to the media specifically about the details prior to the court case. Tiki Taane was arrested for singing the song "Fuck the Police."

Not only that, they pushed to have Tiki Taane charged for speaking to the media about the wrongful arrest. A clear indication that there's an unbalanced application of the law depending on who you are.

The law could have imposed ten years imprisonment and/or a fine of $250,000 under passport legislation for the crime Garrett committed, but he got away with it because of his position. He has again avoided conviction for his perjury. So without further adieu, David Garrett is the Asshole of the Week Award winner. Hurray!