Slater fined for contempt of court

Cameron Slater has been found guilty of seven instances of contempt of court. Six were found to be deemed accidental and minor but “not so trivial as to warrant a finding of no contempt”, ad one was found to involve significant carelessness.

This is part of the ongoing legal action between Matthew Blomfield who is claiming defamation against Slater.

David Fisher, who has clashed with Slater in the past, may have enjoyed reporting:

Whale Oil blogger Cameron Slater has been found in contempt of court in seven instances and reminded there are responsibilities which come with being a journalist.

The breaches have cost Slater $1500 in a judgment in which he was told “there is a strong expectation that those who ignore court orders are brought to account”.

The ruling is the latest from Justice Raynor Asher in the long-running defamation case brought by businessman Matthew Blomfield against Slater for articles published on the Whale Oil blog.

Six of the contempt findings related to an undertaking by Slater not to publish anything about Mr Blomfield that was not in the public domain through a “reputable media source”.

The final contempt was in relation to details which were published from a confidential, unsuccessful, settlement conference.

Justice Asher did not find the instances of contempt to be deliberate and in all but one case described them as “minor but not so trivial as to warrant a finding of no contempt”.

“They were more than technical.”

It was the publication of information from the settlement conference which he described as “more serious”, labelling it an “accidental contempt of court by Slater but one that was the result of significant carelessness”.

More details plus a copy of the judgement: Whale Oil blogger’s contempt (this includes a history of the defamation case Blomfield versus Slater).

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39 Comments

  1. kiwipolitician

     /  18th September 2015

    This guy lost his home because of a failed business venture. Why would he be making defamatory comments about others while knowing he could be sued? What a complete idiot.

    Reply
    • Kevin

       /  19th September 2015

      Because maybe just possibly the comments aren’t defamatory?

      Reply
      • kiwipolitician

         /  19th September 2015

        I’m not sure Kevin, that guy is Key’s personal blogger. He deletes my comments on his blog because he doesn’t want to be caught out when he is wrong. His comments are simply derogatory as well.

        Reply
  2. DaveG

     /  18th September 2015

    From memory, the posts were made by his wife, when he was on a plane to or from Israel and taken down as soon as he realised they had been posted.

    Bloomfield deserves nothing but the inside of a cell for the hundreds of thousands he has ripped off from others. Sorry if you feel that is out of line Pete, but there is enough fact around to support that.

    Reply
    • I know next to nothing about details around all that so can’t make judgement on it, nor will I take sides (from what I’ve seen neither side are without significant blemish).

      I will point out that your bare claim is risky and unsubstantiated. You can state things as honest opinions but not as facts without providing facts.

      Reply
      • Firstly Fisher can’t add, the total sum was $1500. Secondly it was a single paragraph in a post about something else entirely that I wrote that resulted in a $1000 fine. I didn’t name anyone, was careful not to but vague as it was Mr B is like a dog with a bone and won’t let any opportunity go by to hurt his nemesis. Finally Mr Pete George considering your own present predicament with the courts I would have thought you would have left sanctimony at the door.

        Reply
        • “…but vague as it was Mr B is like a dog with a bone…” The judge obviously agreed with him.
          “Finally Mr Pete George considering your own present predicament with the courts I would have thought you would have left sanctimony at the door.” At least Pete has the good grace to allow your post to remain. If the situation were reversed and he posted that on your blog it wouldn’t have lasted 2 minutes and he would be banned. Rather hypocritical of you to post here or for that matter anywhere else when you do not allow the same right of reply.

          Reply
          • We have commenting rules on our blog which Pete George chose to break. He would still be able to post there if he had followed them.They are clearly spelled out. Your comment to me is out of line as I have not broken any commenting rules on this site so the only reason Mr George would have for banning me or deleting my comments would be because he dislikes my husband or because I upset him by referring to something that he cannot comment on because he is currently legally gagged.http://www.whaleoil.co.nz/commenting-moderation/
            http://www.whaleoil.co.nz/trials-tribulations-triumphs-commenting-whaleoil/

            Reply
            • Mike C

               /  19th September 2015

              @SpanishBride

              Your “Commenting Rules” on your blog are a joke. Anyone who disagrees with your opinion or queries something you have written gets an instant ban.

              I don’t even bother to read your blog anymore, because there are only your loyal followers and donators who comment in there now.

            • I didn’t choose to break. I think I used the word crap which is apparently warrantsd a permanent ban on Whale Oil – that’s a pathetic excuse for banning SB, especially considering what is posted at Whale Oil eg:
              http://www.whaleoil.co.nz/2015/08/planning-a-crap-outcome-for-auckland-using-pr-spin/
              http://www.whaleoil.co.nz/2015/09/oh-crap-keys-a-muslim-hugger/
              One rule for commenters, ignore your own rules. Blatant hypocrisy.

              Your so called rules are used as an excuse to exclude any comments and commenters you don’t like.

            • “the only reason Mr George would have for banning me or deleting my comments..”

              …is for any reason I like, this is my blog. Just as you do on Whale Oil, your rules are a farce.

              I choose to allow you to comment here because I believe in free speech and right of reply. In contrast to Whale Oil which effectively runs a system of censorship using rules as excuses.

              From one of your links:

              2. how commenting on Whaleoil is completely different

              Anyone can write a comment on Whaleoil, but it may not stay. Moderators even delete comments they consider too boring. What Moderators are trying to do is be “editors” of the comments section. They are trying to make sure the comments are a good read. So if you have a comment that moderators feel doesn’t add any value, it could be deleted, even if it doesn’t actually violate any of the rules.

              http://www.whaleoil.co.nz/trials-tribulations-triumphs-commenting-whaleoil/

              So regardless of your ridiculous rules you ban any comments you don’t like regardless. Why have the sham rules?

            • Kevin

               /  19th September 2015

              I’ve never had a problem with the commenting rules at WO. For example having a post removed for having a swear word may seem to trivial to others but to me it sets a tone. It says “we keep a clean house here”. Also I have never seen someone make left wing comments on WO and get ganged up and personally attacked – the commenting rules on WO simply wouldn’t allow it. Over on The Standard if so much as suggest something that goes against leftist doctrine the trolls come out in force and in fact The Standard explicitly allows personal attacks, so long as they’re “not pointless”.

            • Sets a tone? Slater sets the tone and ignores his own rules. Hypocritical censorship.

            • Juana…… yeah/nah. Before I copped my ban I was asked a couple of timesif I wanted a commenting holiday for questioning the JK bash/JC pushing line Cam has been running most of the year….

              Pity I used to like some of the comment thread discussions…. but its all gone now.

            • jaspa

               /  19th September 2015

              A lot of explaining going on here …;)

            • 4077th

               /  19th September 2015

              No SB, what you actually have is Pete Belt hell bent on biting the hand that feeds him. There is a growing list of exiles, once loyal paying members sidelined because Belt was having a bad day. I like the gritty way Cam puts his stuff across it was the reason many read WO. The “rules” as you put it are nothing other than a tool to fuel Belt’s megalomania. You should have listened to Travis when you had the chance instead Belt managed to eject him also.

            • “Your comment to me is out of line as I have not broken any commenting rules on this site…” I didn’t say you broke any rules. What I said was if he had made the same comment on w/o he would have been banned. Your rules are an absolute joke, you simply delete anything you don’t like. Simply pointing out that you are wrong and providing proof constitutes a ban.
              “…the only reason Mr George would have for banning me or deleting my comments would be because he dislikes my husband or because I upset him by referring to something that he cannot comment on because he is currently legally gagged.” And yet here you are, still posting when if it were reversed he’d be long gone.
              Your husband likes to claim he is a journalist and is constantly bagging others yet cannot take criticism himself. Pretty sad.

            • Slater is more of a political/business mercenary than journalist but he does do some investigating and reporting. The problem is that as he doesn’t disclose it’s impossible to be sure what is reporting and what are paid for promotions or hit jobs.

            • Abouttime

               /  19th September 2015

              What a load of rubbish, I made 2 comments on the whale oil site about the new “online” laws, they were well and truly within the WO rules, however due to the comments not being what WO wanted I was banned!, 2 posts….never been back, vote with ya feet I say, well done PG lover your site 🙂

        • I’ve read the judgement now and yes, I think you are correct about the total sum of $1500 so Fisher did get that wrong.

          I was posting on something that is of obvious interest to readers here. I haven’t seen it mentioned on Whale Oil.

          Interesting that you know about that other matter. I’m unable to comment on it – I’m sure you understand legal gagging.

          Reply
          • Kevin

             /  19th September 2015

            To be honest I think it’s a bit of a non-issue and Fisher is having a dig. I can understand WO not wanting to give it credence.

            Reply
          • Pete Kane

             /  19th September 2015

            I also just read the judgement – there is no question, it’s $1500. I could have skimmed it and in all honesty it would have been $1500. How Fisher extrapolated that to $2250 is as obvious as from whom it came (and I mean really obvious). I’ve expressed often my opinion of the WO site. However, Fisher cannot be considered an impartial ‘reporter’ in the wider, important and interrelated, public interest matters (Tribeca Homes, just as one example). http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=11443777

            Reply
            • Pete Kane

               /  19th September 2015

              Sorry, edit, should read -…these wider….

            • Johnathon R. Sole

               /  19th September 2015

              I may have missed someting in the Herald article PK – how is the Tribeca Homes article related to the defamation judgement?

            • Pete Kane

               /  19th September 2015

              To JRS
              I was referring to the wider allegations (and implications) implicit within the primary litigation. Which are essentially, a variety of, ‘ethically challenged’ commercial practises and transactions, over a number of years. And which I believe have high public interest merit. Mr fisher has been one of the central MSM ‘players’ in the wider case. But I’m sure, Mr Sole, you like many others, who have taken an interest in the ‘saga’, may have already known that.

          • Pete Kane

             /  19th September 2015

            Herald’s changed its figure to 1500. No acknowledgement of the earlier error. OK no big deal (750 bucks) per se (nothing esp, material), but, this is their pattern and in some stories it will affect context and perception. Poor practise.

            Reply
      • DaveG

         /  18th September 2015

        Pete. Thanks and Fair call, I will in future post a few links to substantiate such a claim. In the meantime a quick list of some that spring to mind, what’re he had some involvement. Tribeca homes, Hell pizza, the mobile pizza caravan, the development property, brothers earthmoving business, the list goes on and on, and it was not cam Slater who went to his home and beat him up, nor did Slater put the guilty party up to it, but the media have been shy to publish the details very strange?

        Reply
        • “Slater who went to his home and beat him up, nor did Slater put the guilty party up to it, but the media have been shy to publish the details very strange?” Perhaps you reap what you sow?

          Reply
          • Should read “… it was not cam Slater who went to his home and beat him up…”

            Reply
  3. Johnathon R. Sole

     /  19th September 2015

    So, if I am reading the judgement correctly, do I take it that the Plaintiff has been pursuing WO thru the courts for nearly 3 years, and has finally been awarded $750 for what the judge sez amounts to ‘minor contempt’?

    Seems hardly worth getting your arse out of bed for……LOL!!

    Reply
    • It’s not finally, this was a side issue along a tortuous legal route that is yet to finish.

      Reply
      • You are correct. What is truly funny is that the newspaper by publishing the legal ruling in full have published word for word what was written that has been removed by WO. What has been achieved is that all the stuff he didn’t want in public is now freely available via The Herald as it is considered to a “reputable media source”.

        Reply
        • Yes I thought that was very odd for the Herald to post all that. But it is more balanced than what had been posted on Whale Oil.

          Reply
        • As sad as the Herald can be at times it is a far more “reputable media source” than w/o.

          Reply
        • Mike C

           /  19th September 2015

          @SpanishBride

          Neither the Whale or the Herald can be classified as “Reputable News Sources”. LOL.

          Reply
    • BUCK WIT

       /  19th September 2015

      LOL- $750 for 3 years work!!! Ask this question – why has the defamation case not proceeded? the answer is easy – the defamation case is NOT what Blomfield wants to be heard. after all he was told by Asher J to move it from the DC, to the HC, and so far it apepars its moving no where. After all, who if claimed they were defamed would spend 3 years getting $750!

      Reply
      • Pete Kane

         /  19th September 2015

        I’ve said in past that I think ,on balance, WO may well be in the right on this one – avery big admission for me. But I also note this from Asher J’s ruling of the other day.

        “[59] Mr Slater complains about the length of time which these proceedings are taking to get to trial. The case is proceeding very slowly, and neither seems to be pushing hard for trial. It is Mr Slater’s appeal which presently delays progress.” (Page 15)

        However, I agree with both SB and PG that the Herald has opened a whole new can of worms (my expression) on this. The wide spread dissemination of the judgement in the MSM allows a causal linkage that WO (and anyone else) to use whist still maintain the agreements reached earlier in the District Court.

        Only one (material) winner I can see from this judgement. And at 1500 bucks, all the more joyful.

        Reply

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