Williams v Craig – Friday

NZ Herald summarises today in Colin Craig defamation trial: everything you need to know so far:

FRIDAY:
Cross examination continued for most of the day, with Mills questioning Williams motives for disclosing the letters and poems. He suggested Williams was driven by a want to have Craig removed as party leader. Williams agreed with that, saying he felt Craig was an inappropriate person to lead a Christian movement based on family values given his inappropriate conduct towards MacGregor. He maintains he was acting in her best interests and had a moral obligation to tell the party what he knew.

More details from RNZ in Jordan Williams questioned over Colin Craig love poems (audio):

The man suing Colin Craig for defamation has faced questions in court about why he gave blogger Cameron Slater a copy of a poem the former Conservative Party leader had written to his press secretary.

http://www.radionz.co.nz/national/programmes/checkpoint/audio/201815586/jordan-williams-questioned-over-colin-craig-love-poems#

Transcript:

John Campbell: The man who’s suing Colin Craig for defamation faced questions court about why he gave blogger Cameron Slater a copy of a poem the former leader of the Conservative Party had written to his secretary.

Jordan Williams, the Executive Director of the Taxpayers’ Union says he wasn’t trying to undermine Mr Craig, rather he was trying to set the record straight for Rachel MacGregor’s benefit.

Who would give embarrassing material to Slater for ‘the benefit’ of a woman who had asked for nothing to be passed on?

Sarah Robson: The jury has heard that Jordan Williams emailed Whale Oil blogger Cameron Slater a poem that Colin Craig had written for Rachel MacGregor. The poem was published on the same day Mr Craig stepped down from the leadership of the Conservative Party in June last year.

Mr Craig’s lawyer Mr Stephen Mills QC cross examined Mr Williams on his motivation for sending the poem, and whether it was party of a strategy to undermine his client.

Stephen Mills: The objective of that strategy from your perspective was?

Jordan Williams: Ah well it was, it was to protect Rachel. I think that by particularly by this day I was very angry, um, but I don’t think there was a, from the beginning a strategy to undermine, I mean there definitely wasn’t um a strategy to undermine Mr Craig or specifically use the information against him.

Sarah Robson: Jordan Williams told the court he became aware of a blog post Cameron Slater was planning to publish, that was going to suggest that Ms MacGregor was obsessed with Mt Craig, and that there had been a sexual relationship. Mr Mills questioned him about the agreement he reached with Mr Slater to give him the poem so the other story did not go online.

Stephen Mills: And was the agreement that if you gave him some good raw meat, then he wouldn’t run that story?

Jordan Williams: That is an interpretation yes. Right, yes i accept that. I wouldn’t call it raw meat but…

Sarah Robson: Mr Williams was pressed on whether his actions really were in Ms MacGregor’s interests given the media fire storm that resulted from the publication of the poem.

Jordan Williams: Because the public um and the media picked up on that there was no sexual relationship because they assumed they um Cameron had a very good source because he had the some of the material.

Stephen Mills: So it made this a national issue

Jordan Williams: It already was.You saw it on the, Paul Henry that morning, it was all over the news regardless.

Sarah Robson:  Jordan Williams also faced questions from Mr Mills about why he chose to send the poem to Mr Slater using the name Concerned Conservative rather than his own name.

Jordan Williams: It is something that I didn’t want my organisation to be associated with or to come out in some expose in twelve months time, and so like many of the sources that provide information to the Taxpayers’ Union I created an account so that later on if Mr Slater was hacked or whatever it wouldn’t, it wouldn’t come back to me.

Sarah Robson:  Under cross examination Mr Williams was asked how this was different to Mr Craig using the name Mr X as a literary device in the leaflet at the centre of the defamation case. Mr Williams said Mr Craig was being dishonest.

It will be interesting to see what else comes out. I had heard that other witnesses including MacGregor were expected to be called starting yesterday so it appears as if the cross-examination of Williams is going on longer than originally anticipated.

This is the post on Whale Oil last year (June 19) when the poem was published:

EXCLUSIVE: THE POEM COLIN CRAIG DOESN’T WANT YOU TO SEE

WhaleOil Media can reveal that Colin Craig failed to tell the Conservative Party’s Board that he previously faced serious allegations of sexual harassment from a former staff member in a complaint laid with the Human Rights Commission. It is understood that the claim lead to a confidential payout which until recently the Board were unaware of.

We have been told by members of the Board that they were assured on multiple occasions by Colin Craig that no allegations of a sexual or moral nature were involved and relied on one element of the claim, a series of unpaid invoices or a dispute in relation to the employee’s hourly rate, to hide the more serious allegations.

WhaleOil Media understands that no sexual relationship resulted, but Colin Craig is alleged to have pursued the staffer including sending a large volume of text messages, letters and inappropriate touching.

A source, which was supporting the victim as the events unfolded last year, has provided WhaleOil Media with some of the letters and text messages.

We are still working through the material.

To give you a flavour here is  a poem and the end of one of the letters.

Free political advice for the next Conservative Party leader: When you’re writing letters you might be sued over don’t sign the end of the letter. That way you can at least claim it’s a fake…

Pete Belt’s take on it:

wocraigpoembelt1

And also he shares a tweet from Williams:

wocraigpoembelt2

Slater joins in:

wocraigpoem3

There’s a lot of other known information around this and I can think of a number of interesting questions and points but at this stage prefer to wait and see what comes out in court.

From what has already come up in court it appears that Williams and therefore presumably Slater and Whale Oil only had part of the communications between Craig and MacGregor, and nothing from MacGregor to Craig.

Leave a comment

32 Comments

  1. Kitty Catkin

     /  9th September 2016

    ‘I felt it my duty to….’ How often has that been said when the sayer is simply being self-righteous and/or a stirrer ?

    Reply
    • Pete Kane

       /  9th September 2016

      I do have to readily admit a level of bias. The stuff with Jordan and Dr Brash (who I think at heart is an honorable man), and their toppling of Rodney is, well, just outside my comfort zone. Should clarify, challenge and change are a proper and healthy part of democracy. But this seemed coup stuff to me, and that is very different.

      Reply
      • AKA dirty politics. Which is what Slater at least seemed to be indulging in also versus Craig.

        Some details here:
        http://www.thepaepae.com/why-does-jordan-williams-expose-himself-to-so-much-loathing-contempt-and-ridicule/37233/

        Reply
      • Gezza

         /  9th September 2016

        “I do have to readily admit a level of bias. The stuff with Jordan and Dr Brash (who I think at heart is an honorable man), and their toppling of Rodney is, well, just outside my comfort zone.”

        Wiki:
        “In 1964 Brash married his first wife, Erica, with whom he had two children. In the 1980s he and his Singaporean secretary, Je Lan Lee, entered into a relationship. Both were married at the time. He separated from his first wife in 1985 and four months after they were divorced he married Lee.[4][5] In 2007, his second marriage also broke up, following an affair with Diane Foreman, then Deputy Chair of the Business Round Table.[6] Brash and Lee had one child together.[7]”

        Reply
  2. Pete Kane

     /  9th September 2016

    Great work Pete. I think for many that follow NZ politics, there is a feeling, that there is a lot more in all this than may ‘superficially’ appear.

    Reply
    • Those who have followed Dirty Politics will know there’s probably a lot more to it.

      I could add a lot of relevant information but I think that’s up to the court at this stage. Craig’s lawyers seem to have a good understanding of it all.

      Reply
  3. MaureenW

     /  9th September 2016

    Yes, Mr Williams has been well protecting Ms MacGregors virtue. Bang, bang, squeak, squeak, – what a hypocrite. This case was about removing Colin Craig everything else is road-kill.

    Reply
  4. Tipene

     /  9th September 2016

    Slater’s “bluff” has now been (rightly) called now on so many occasions, that we could name a landmark after him

    Reply
  5. Pete Kane

     /  9th September 2016

    Serious question. How many in our MSM, including the commentariat, (Henry, Hosking, Campbell ent al), really have a handle on what’s been happening, the inter relationships etc etc?

    Reply
    • Tipene

       /  9th September 2016

      Great question.

      Answer? SFA, because just like Williams, most of them don’t fact-check anymore before they publish something.

      [Deleted. PG]

      Reply
      • Now that it has been revealed that there was actually no sexual harassment taking place by Craig upon Macgregor, but that rather the inappropriate relationship was in fact mutual, consider the skill required to con as many people as Macgregor was able to do, for so long.

        No that hasn’t been revealed in court. Craig’s team have presented evidence that suggests some of the relationship may have been mutual, but “no sexual harassment” has not been proven by any means. MacGregor has not been called as a witness yet, nor cross-examined.

        If there was a Pulitzer prize for deceit – Macgregor would have no equal.

        I presume that’s your opinion, but I haven’t seen any evidence to support this yet.

        Even the Human Rights Commission fell for the sting.

        That’s a serious allegation and again I’m not aware of any evidence supporting it. I haven’t seen what went before the Human Rights Commission, and unless you have seen everything that was then you are making serious and unsubstantiated accusations. If you do this again I will put you on auto moderation. I won’t tolerate unsubstantiated accusations related to this case, that’s the sort of thing Whale Oil does but I won’t allow their sort of dirty game to be played here.

        Reply
        • Tipene

           /  10th September 2016

          Hi Pete,

          I never make any claim about anything that I can’t back up with evidence if it is required, so please be assured that if called on, I can front.

          Reply
  6. Tipene

     /  9th September 2016

    New Zealand now has it’s own blond Mata Hari.

    Reply
  7. Gezza

     /  9th September 2016

    Two things:
    1. Conservatives have moe fun.
    2. Probably best for their leaders to employ secretaries who look like Quasimodo.

    Reply
  8. Tipene

     /  10th September 2016

    [Far too much insinuation and speculation and whatever that is inappropriate, especially at this stage. PG]

    Reply
  9. Conspiratoor

     /  10th September 2016

    Could be too early to write your friend Cameron off pg. The poor bastard has endured a whole week in the stands watching this farce unfold. He has provided a very measured, by his standards, summary of proceedings today

    And you’ll also be pleased to know he hasn’t forgotten you – ‘cackling from the left and tumbleweed side of the blogosphere is somewhat premature’

    As an old zen monk used to tell me ‘It ain’t over till the fat lady takes the stand and lets rip’

    Reply
    • Macgregor’s testimony next week will be key and will ultimately decide who wins.

      Reply
      • Gezza

         /  10th September 2016

        Already been decided PDB. The media & the lawyers. All the others are losers.

        Reply
      • Conspiratoor

         /  10th September 2016

        I think you might be right pants. Are there any good guys here, or are they all sinners?

        Reply
    • Tipene

       /  10th September 2016

      Slaters post is as confused as his thinking. The reason the msm hasn’t reported on the issues Slater has tabled is because Slater’s conclusions and claims are materially and contextually inaccurate.

      People can get sued for publishing inaccurate material, and someone needs to remind Slater of……..oh, hang on…….

      Reply
      • Conspiratoor

         /  10th September 2016

        “Slaters post is as confused as his thinking”. Specifically which parts TP? And be careful. pg doesn’t need another defamation case. Cheers,c

        Reply
        • Tipene

           /  10th September 2016

          The parts that will no doubt now (again) increase the defamation damages being sought against Slater by Craig at a later date.

          He.just.doesn’t.learn.from.his.mistakes.

          Reply
          • Conspiratoor

             /  10th September 2016

            I think he is learning TP but as for you, maybe it will take a little while. In the meantime throw shit, keep it vague and hope something sticks. Fortunately for you pg is running a class for slow learners

            Reply
  10. Pete Kane

     /  10th September 2016

    Who’s who?

    Reply

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