Murphy on ‘Winston goes fishing’

Journalist Tim Murphy, now at Newsroom,  is one of those who was served with legal papers today trying to discover who leaked information about the Winston Peters superannuation overpayment. He has written about it in Winston goes fishing.

He says that he has been included due to a single tweet, and for being ‘a long time media detractor’ of Peters.

It says Peters became aware of a tweet by me supposedly boasting that Newsroom was about to publish a story. No such claim was made on Twitter or elsewhere. It claims ‘innuendo” that the “story would destroy Peters’ political career”.

For that Murphy has been named as first defendant.

 No such indication could possibly have been taken from the tweet. In any case, the tweet was deliberate parody of news media promotion of their upcoming stories.

The actual documents are an application “for discovery before proceeding commenced under High Court rule 8.20” and an affidavit from a Remuera lawyer Clifton Killip Lyon.

For each defendant there is an attached schedule listing what it is that Peters’ lawyers want under this fishing – sorry, discovery – expedition. It ranges from journalists’ notes, phone records, emails and other communications to ministers’ documents and phone and meeting records.

“To issue proceedings,” the application says, “he [Peters] requires access to the document trail developed by the conduct of the intended defendant’s aforesaid conduct”.

It appears that Peters is trying to find evidence – if so that appears he may have made serious accusations without having much in the way solid evidence – and possibly no evidence apart from a bit of banter in social media.

Lyon and Henry have been instructed by Peters “to identify and sue” those responsible, once they have any information that can help them finalise their “pleadings”.

If Peters knew who leaked he would surely have just targeted them.


Leave a comment


  1. patupaiarehe

     /  7th November 2017

    He obviously doesn’t know. He is just ‘shaking the tree’, to see what falls out. And good on him. The info was leaked in an attempt to smear him. But despite the offender’s efforts, he is still deputy PM.

  2. david in aus

     /  7th November 2017

    Even Trump hasn’t taken legal action against reporters. Deputy Prime Minister’s priorities in office:
    1. Sue media
    2. Enjoy baubles of office (how’s the caviar?).
    3. Consult mirror

  3. alloytoo

     /  7th November 2017

    Who had the most to gain from the leak…….Winston
    Who gained the most from the leak…….Winston
    Who leaked the information………..(Hint it begins with a “W”)

    • This vain old man truly thought he sat at around 20% in the polls. He blames Nats for
      #losing Northland
      #campaigning actively for Northland
      #never being PM

  4. Tipene

     /  7th November 2017

    Signing legal documents one day before the election against one of the parties you are going into “negotiation” with, and then stringing it out for two weeks?

    Labour have been well and truly played by the master, haven’t they?

  5. Peters a serial litigator and often in trouble on the donations front


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