Nottingham has not been acting alone

Dermot Nottingham has not acted alone in his actions taken against many people, including harassment and defamation via laudafinem.com and in a number of legal proceedings, some of which have been described as abuses of process, vexatious and more by various judges.

In April Nottingham was found guilty at a jury trial of five charges of criminal harassment and two charges of breach of non-publication orders (suppression). He was sentenced in July to the maximum one year of home detention and ordered not to use the Internet. The Crown had sought a prison sentence and may appeal (Nottingham already indicated he would appeal).

See Blogger dodges prison over court suppression breaches, harassment campaigns and “Either Dermot Nottingham is Lauda Finem…or he is so intimately related to it…”

Last week Nottingham was adjudicated bankrupt, largely due to unpaid court costs of about a quarter of a million dollars as a result of five failed private prosecutions.

See Dermot Nottingham adjudicated bankrupt

Nottingham has given post traumatic stress disorder and mental health as reasons for some of his behaviour, but that doesn’t explain everything. And he has not acted alone.

While stating he had debts of about $2 million Nottingham tried to avoid bankruptcy by putting a proposal to creditors. A majority of alleged creditors with claimed debts of over $1.5 million voted in favour of the proposal, but as none of them provided proof of their claims these were rejected by the judge, who said:

“In my view, there is a public interest in Mr Nottingham being bankrupted so that the Official Assignee can investigate and establish whether all of these claims are legitimate…”.

Those claims were mostly if not entirely made by family and associates of Nottingham, including:

  • Phillip Nottingham$480,728 – cash advances, unpaid rent, guarantees, work completed – not paid, goods and services supplied
  • Phillip Nottingham with power of attorney for his mother for $450,000  – advances, guarantees
  • Earle McKinney for $248,650 – cash advances, guarantees, unpaid services (two others giving the same address also made claims)
  • Marc Spring for $28,765 – cash advances, multiple motor vehicle expenses, Breiting mens (sic) watch
  • Cam Slater $10,450

I have no information of what Slater’s claim was for, but for the others the above descriptions are all that was given. There was no substantiating evidence for about 18 creditors. Some claims, and part of some claims, may be legitimate, but that will be checked out by the OA.

Nottingham’s sentencing notes allude to others being involved:

[22] Now, I make some findings of fact. Consistent with the verdicts of the jury I have concluded that between 2010 and 2015 Dermot Nottingham published or had published numerous articles on the blog site laudafinem.com. Either Dermot Nottingham is Lauda Finem (in other words, the leading mind of that blog) or he is so intimately related to it that it is proper to conclude that he provided information and draft articles to that blog site knowing and intending that they would be published.

[23] During that five year period the defendant undertook numerous campaigns of harassment against a number of individuals, the most egregious and persistent of which were represented by the five complainants in the trial. I concluded that his conduct by publishing said articles, through other intimidating and harassing conduct – including threatening, watching, photographing, following – was either carried out directly by Dermot Nottingham or at his direction and that he knew his conduct was likely to cause the individuals to fear for their safety or the safety of family members.

In the private prosecution of myself and Allied Press (charges withdrawn after eleven months) and similarly with the private prosecutions of APN Ltd and Lynn Prentice (charges dismissed at trial) there were a number of people involved with assisting Nottingham, including:

Earle McKinney arranged service of court documents, shared the same email address as Nottingham linked to McKinney’s business Advantage Advocacy Ltd (registered address was Nottingham’s residential address, now in liquidation) of which Nottingham was an employee, threatened further charges via that email, signed court documents on Nottingham’s behalf, has appeared with Nottingham at court hearings.

McKinney has been virtually joined at the hip with Nottingham in the private prosecutions, including acting as a ‘McKenzie friend’.

[24] Importantly, for present purposes, the affidavit was in any event inadmissible. As I noted in my judgment, it was replete with irrelevant material, opinion evidence and pontification by a Mr McKinney, who appeared as Mr Nottingham’s McKenzie friend, as to what he – Mr McKinney – thought the law is, or perhaps more precisely,
should be. The affidavit contained a number of pejorative comments about Judge Collins and how he ran the trial.

NOTTINGHAM v APN NEWS & MEDIA LTD [2018] NZHC 1004 [9 May 2018]

Cameron Slater was named as an informant with all four prosecutions. He was named as an ‘expert witness’ but never provided a witness statement in my and Allied Press prosecutions. He was a witness in the APN/Prentice trial:

Mr Cullen submits that the prosecutor’s failings can be summarised in this way:

  • calling a witness who had not been brief (sic), Mr Slater. The detail and nature of this evidence had not been provided to the defence prior to the presentation of the witness to the Court;

NOTTINGHAM v APN NEWS & MEDIA LTD [2018] NZHC 596 [29 March 2018]

Phillip Nottingham submitted a lengthy affidavit in support of his brother Dermot for the costs hearings in 2016.  I spent half a day reading the only copy at court when I discovered it was there (this was never served despite follow up court orders to do so).

Marc Spring served charging documents. He openly tagged teamed with @laudafinem on Twitter, starting just prior to charges being served, in what amounted to months of harassment via Twitter. I believe he was also a contributor to laudafinem.com via posts and comments. Under numerous pseudonyms he breached court orders and tried to severely disrupt the operation of Your NZ.

In December Spring served a court order on me that attempted to force me to edit him out of Your NZ (where he was named, not where he used pseudonyms, and attempted to force full time moderation with no comments automatically posting. This turned out to be a legal farce, as it used the Harmful Digital Communications Act but didn’t follow correct procedures, and it was a year before the Act came into force, so was discharged when the judge was informed of this – see Court order discharged.

This was discussed on Kiwiblog, with Slater becoming involved indicating he was also linked. He said:

“Your fascination with me and your allowing of despicable and defamatory comments about me and my friends is coming to an end”.

(Emphasis added)

It was covered again later at Kiwiblog in  Judge got it wrong on HDCA – there are some interesting comments.

“If that was done in the knowledge that the grounds did not exist, it seems a clear attempt to pervert the course of justice. If not, it says something about the legal skills of the applicant.”

“Seems the lawyer who sought the order needs to be hauled up before a disciplinary committee. The lawyer is as much to blame as the judge for the foul-up, indeed significantly more so.”

“Negligent is a more than charitable description. It is at best appalling incompetence and at worst an attempt to pervert the course of justice. Assuming, of course, that a lawyer was involved. If not, then the judge really dropped the ball.”

Associated with this a press release was published showing Dermot Nottingham as the document author, which threatened prison. Following the failure of the court order Nottingham tried to get this action included in his prosecution and demanded I be imprisoned by Christmas (2015) but that was rejected by the judge.

In May 2016 Slater put out a press release over the Rachinger/Standard hack – this was posted a day before suppression lapsed on laudafinem.com – either he or someone with access to his press release in advance must have passed it on to ‘Lauda Finem’. Slater may have breached his own suppression. See Slater on the Standard hack.

In my case (also Allied Press, APN and Prentice) Nottingham may have also breached his own suppression over a period of months, if he had anything to do with the posts attacking me and revealing details of his private prosecution. Someone with knowledge of his prosecutions was writing posts for Lauda Finem.

Dermot Nottingham, Phillip Nottingham and McKinney have been engaged in a protracted dispute involving three people and the Real Estate Authority that started in think in 2011 and is still unresolved. A summary (to early 2017) here: NOTTINGHAM, NOTTINGHAM AND MCKINNEY v THE REAL ESTATE AGENTS AUTHORITY [2017] NZCA 1 [27 February 2017]

Another protracted proceeding, going for over six years and scheduled for trial, is the defamation case Blomfield v Slater. Nottingham and Spring have also been associated with that.

[1] The appellant, Mr Slater, operates a blog on the internet which he calls Whale Oil. The respondent, Mr Blomfield, has sued him in the Manukau District Court claiming he has been defamed by material published on the website.

[14] However, the Judge considered there was no evidence that Mr Blomfield had endeavoured to bully and intimidate Mr Spring, or others who had already been disclosed as sources of information given to Mr Slater. The email exchange between Mr Blomfield and Mr Spring indicated that Mr Spring appeared “to be sending Mr Blomfield aggressive and abusive texts”, with Mr Blomfield taking a “relatively defensive position”.

[33] In his submissions, the main emphasis Mr Slater gave this second affidavit related to the fact that Mr Blomfield had telephoned Mr Mattu on Monday 5 October 2015. Mr Mattu recognised the caller’s number as that of Mr Blomfield and decided not to take the call. Instead, he telephoned Mr Slater to seek his advice. Mr Slater was unavailable, but an associate, Mr Nottingham, advised him to take the next call from Mr Blomfield and to record it. It was then arranged that instead Mr Mattu would telephone Mr Blomfield while Mr Nottingham remained on the line and both would record what was said. That then ensued, the discussion lasting for some 26 minutes. A little over an hour later, Mr Mattu again telephoned Mr Blomfield while Mr Nottingham was on the line.

SLATER V BLOMFIELD [2015] NZCA 562 [19 November 2015]

Counsel: C J Slater, in person, Defendant
(D Nottingham as McKenzie Friend for Mr Slater)

BLOMFIELD v SLATER [2017] NZHC 1654 [18 July 2017]

Court notes show that a hard drive belonging to Blomfield, containing business and personal data, was supplied to Slater, and he used contents of that to put up posts on Whale Oil attacking Blomfield. When Blomfield took Slater to court alleging defamation, Slater made an agreement with the court not to post further attacks on Blomfield.

The hard drive ended up in the hands of ‘Lauda Finem’, who then posted many attacks on Blomfield. Eventually (late 2016) according to Lauda Finem, Blomfield shut down their website with a court order.

Marc Spring also started posting attacks on Blomfield at Your NZ using a variety of pseudonyms (for example he would post an attack, then under another name support that comment to try to legitimise it). I was informed that this may be in breach of a restraining order:

Mr Blomfield’s application for a restraining order against Mr Spring was successful in the Auckland District Court. In delivering judgment, Judge Dawson noted that the relationship between the two was “toxic”. The Judge proceeded to find that text messages sent to Mr Blomfield by Mr Spring constituted harassment under the Harassment Act 1997. A restraining order was accordingly made against Mr Spring and remains in force until 9 April 2016.

So I prevented Spring from posting further comments on Blomfield. Spring then started accusing me of acting under Blomfield’s instruction (I wasn’t).

Over a year later Nottingham made written submissions (during a costs hearing that he didn’t attend) accusing me of some sort of collusion with Blomfield. The judge rejected this submission as irrelevant.

Leading up to a costs appeal hearing Nottingham emailed me on 27 June 2017 (using the Advantage Advocacy Ltd email account):

I confirm that you still face contempt applications in police v dn.  You will be required to attend at Auckland or by video link if the court allowed.

I have copied in messrs slater and so they can apply to comment on your defamatory statements.

It may be that they consider a fresh application under the hdca 2015

Kind regards

dn

Another email on 28 June 2017 (also to Spring and Slater):

Dear Messrs Spring, and Slater

I am available with others tomorrow to discuss the issues relating to Mr Georges campaign of criminal harassment.

Please find annexed the highly defamatory and contemptuous documentation filed by [the perp] Peter George.

I agree with both of you that a further application under the Harmful Digital Communications Act might be appropriate, but this time for a complete close down, and I further accept that proceedings under section 24 of the Defamation Act 1992, would also be appropriate for you both.

I have invited professionals that can advise you Mr Spring, in particular given Mr Georges inimical contact with your ex employer, who I understand is prepared to give evidence.  They have advised that the entire proceedings would be held in Auckland.

Such an application would need to be made on notice to Mr George.  George will likely represent himself which would be an issue, and I suggest that an application for Amicus to assist Mr George might be necessary.

Mr George has lied in his recent subs to the Court, and this will be proved to the Criminal Standard by your evidence to the High Court at Dunedin.

I look forward to your presence tomorrow.  At your instructions, Mr Slater, I have ordered in catering for 14, and an international video link in relation to one of your supporters.

Kindest regards

Dermot Nottingham

I wonder if the international ‘supporter’ is @laudafinem from the Netherlands (ex Australia, ex New Zealand), another brother. or it could be just more bluster.

Claims in that are laughable and ridiculous, but typical of numerous threats of further litigation and ‘investigations’. My wife has also been threatened, my brother implicated, and my lawyer was threatened with being reported for misconduct if he didn’t get me to plead guilty.

Dermot Nottingham is generally regarded as the main offender, hence his prosecution. As described by the sentencing judge:

“Either Dermot Nottingham is Lauda Finem (in other words, the leading mind of that blog) or he is so intimately related to it that it is proper to conclude that he provided information and draft articles to that blog site knowing and intending that they would be published.”

“The leading mind” implies some sort of higher intelligence, which is debatable, but it could be true given the line up of associates.

But it is clear that there is a line up of associates alongside Nottingham, aiding and abetting and engaging in similar bullying, harassment and defamation. A common practice of Nottingham, Spring and Slater is to accuse others of what they themselves are guilty of doing – to the extent that sometimes their accusations sound almost like confessions, or revealing intent.

With the convictions and bankruptcy things have finally unravelled for Nottingham, and there could be more repercussions for him. Some of his associates may also find themselves under more scrutiny (Slater ‘already’ faces trial next month).

In my opinion this group of people have run despicable campaigns against many people, including possible defamation of judges, and allegations of judges and court officials being corrupt (for example allegations of court transcript tampering, and collusion with police and media as happened in the application to file charges against myself).

They may finally be held to account.

I am publishing this so that others who may have been or may be subject to their attention can know some of what they have done. I knew virtually nothing about them (apart from Slater) before they started their campaign of harassment against me. If I knew what sort of people I was dealing with I would have approached things differently – in particular I would have pushed much harder for the courts to not let them abuse processes and ignore laws, court rules and court directions often with impunity for years.

My stuff is still dragging through the courts over three years after the prosecution charges were filed. others have been battling them and the court system for much longer – six years, eight years.

There are signs that courts are finally getting tougher. Good.

I know of a number of others who say they have been subjected to egregious treatment by these people.

As the judge said on adjudicating bankruptcy:

During the five year period the defendant undertook numerous campaigns of harassment against a number of individuals, the most egregious and persistent of which were represented by the five complainants in the trial. I concluded that his conduct by publishing said articles, through other intimidating and harassing conduct – including threatening, watching, photographing, following – was either carried out by Dermot Nottingham or at his direction and that he knew his conduct was likely to cause the individuals to fear for their safety or the safety of family members.

Unquestionably these apparently groundless prosecutions have wreaked havoc with the lives of those wrongly accused of criminal activity. In my view, if Mr Nottingham’s bankruptcy puts an end to this practice on his part, then that is a public good.

I agree that putting an end to ‘this practice’ is in the public good. And I believe that making the public aware of what Nottingham and his associates have done is also in the public good.

 

“Either Dermot Nottingham is Lauda Finem…or he is so intimately related to it…”

“Either Dermot Nottingham is Lauda Finem (in other words, the leading mind of that blog) or he is so intimately related to it that it is proper to conclude that he provided information and draft articles to that blog site knowing and intending that they would be published.”

“He makes the concession…that he has never denied that he has supplied information to the website…”

Following a jury trial in the District Court in Auckland in April and May 2018  Dermot Nottingham was convicted of two breaches of non-publication orders, and five charges of criminal harassment. He was sentenced to a term of a maximum one year home detention. See NZH Blogger dodges prison over court suppression breaches, harassment campaigns

The offending largely involved a website laudafinem.com that has a notorious reputation for posting many breaches of suppression as well as numerous attacks on many people, including judges, lawyers, police officers, pooliticians, journalists, business people (and businesses), and individuals – including me and two individuals who participated here.

I think that there is public interest in Nottingham’s connection with laudafinem.com be made known, as many people have been subjected to attacks and defamation.

Open justice is an important part of our country.

From a court document that is a public document (not yet available online):

[13] The detective sergeant’s efforts to establish links between Mr Nottingham and the Lauda Finem website led to an expansion of the investigation once he discovered a number of Lauda Finem articles which indicated several campaigns of harassment against individuals identified in those articles.

Conduct included:

  • Repetitively publishing articles on Lauda Finem containing fictitious, offensive and defamatory material.
  • Repetitively publishing articles on Lauda Finem about associates and family members containing fictitious, offensive and defamatory material about those persons.
  • Obtaining private photographs of the complainants and family and publishing those on Lauda Finem.
  • Photographing or causing to be photographed for publication on Lauda Finem.
  • Recording communications for publication on Lauda Finem m conjunction with offensive and defamatory material.

[18] It was clear to me that, for some of the complainants, life over an extended period of time had been made very uncomfortable and distressing, in some cases affecting the daily lives of some complainants whose reputations in their community had been so badly maligned as to cause them to withdraw within themselves.

[22] Now, I make some findings of fact. Consistent with the verdicts of the jury I have concluded that between 2010 and 2015 Dermot Nottingham published or had published numerous articles on the blog site laudafinem.com. Either Dermot Nottingham is Lauda Finem (in other words, the leading mind of that blog) or he is so intimately related to it that it is proper to conclude that he provided information and draft articles to that blog site knowing and intending that they would be published.

[23] During that five year period the defendant undertook numerous campaigns of harassment against a number of individuals, the most egregious and persistent of which were represented by the five complainants in the trial. I concluded that his conduct by publishing said articles, through other intimidating and harassing conduct – including threatening, watching, photographing, following – was either carried out directly by Dermot Nottingham or at his direction and that he knew his conduct was likely to cause the individuals to fear for their safety or the safety of family members.

[24] It was plain to me from the evidence that a number of these courses of conduct started with Mr Nottingham crossing the path of the individual complainant, either in his own capacity or on behalf of another individual, acting as their advocate. Initially, it is possible in some instances that Mr Nottingham reasonably believed he had legitimate concerns or complaints. However, rather than pursuing those complaints by lawful and reasonable means, he adopted a combative approach, I have to say reminiscent of his approach generally to the authorities and even to this Court, where he sought to achieve his goals or obtain justice by resorting to personal attack. Mr Nottingham seems to believe that, when it comes to informal media through blog sites and social media, “anything goes”.

[25] It is important to recognise and note at this stage that mainstream media are subject to codes of conduct which avoid the type of abusive and threatening articles being published in mainstream media, but bloggers and other persons who carry out their personal attacks through the medium of the Internet seem to feel that they are not bound by similar moral codes of conduct. Mr Nottingham seeks to justify and make
lawful his conduct towards others by reference to the conduct of other bloggers who habitually take an aggressive and attacking approach in purporting to uncover corruption and injustice. Further, Dermot Nottingham seeks to argue that the prosecution of him discloses bias and unfairness on the part of the police, the Crown and the Court, because others are doing similar things and getting away with it.

[26] I proceed on the basis that two wrongs do not make a right. Individuals can never escape the consequences of their unlawful conduct simply by pointing to someone else who is similarly acting unlawfully. It must also be said in the context of the evidence in this case that the degree of attack, abuse, harassment and its relentless nature appears to be far worse in Dermot Nottingham’s case than in the examples he relies upon to claim unfair and biased treatment.

[28] …The Crown submits that the key purpose of sentencing in this case should be to hold the offender accountable for the harm done to the victims, to denounce his conduct and to deter him and others from offending in a similar manner. I accept that those purposes apply in this case.

[29] The Crown further proposes that there are a number of aggravating features to the criminal harassment charges, namely the extent of the harm. The allegations against the complainants included that that they were alcoholics, used drugs, were promiscuous or were corrupt professionals and public officials. The Crown characterised the language used by Mr Nottingham as malicious, misogynistic and entirely abhorrent. Without the need for me to repeat any of those specific offensive allegations, I concur with the summary of Mr Nottingham’s conduct. I also accept that those aggravating features are present.

[31] The third aggravating feature as proposed by the Crown is that the offender, Dermot Nottingham, clearly researched his targets extensively and published intimate and personal details, including making reference to friends and family, photographs of homes and cars and their licence plates. The level of research and preparation for a number of these articles demonstrates, the Crown says, a high degree of premeditation.

[32] Finally, the Crown submits that another aggravating feature, being the number and seriousness of the offences, is present, relating not only to the number of complainants, but also the persistence and time over which that harassment was carried out or continued. I accept that all three of those aggravating features are present in this case and to a high degree.

[38] I turn now to Mr Nottingham’s position, or his submissions on sentencing. In his written submissions, Dermot Nottingham, as I have previously indicated, relies on the proposition that the Lauda Finem website treated the complainant no differently to anyone else it reports on; for instance, like Mr Slater does on his website. He makes the concession at paragraph 32 of his submissions that he has never denied that he has supplied information to the website, although he maintains his denial that he is the leading mind of that website or has any significant control over its operators

[40] On the subject of cumulative sentences, Mr Nottingham simply states that is not appropriate. Further, he submits that imprisonment is not appropriate and he seeks to focus on the behaviours of the complainants, presumably to suggest that his conduct towards them was, at some level, justifiable.

[42] Not only does such a statement reinforce the contempt with which
Mr Nottingham holds the decisions of the Court and the non-publication orders, but establishes beyond doubt that Mr Nottingham harbours no sense of remorse in relation to any of this offending.

[52]  Mr Nottingham does not qualify for any consideration of reduction of sentence for guilty pleas, or indeed for remorse. He has doggedly defended the allegations and required the complainants to give evidence. Although this does not add to the sentence I impose, it highlights why Mr Nottingham is not entitled to any discount for remorse or acceptance.

[53] In his written submissions, Mr Nottingham makes it plain that he disagrees with the findings of the jury and challenges many of the rulings of the Court. As is characteristic of his approach to legal proceedings, I anticipate that Mr Nottingham will pursue all avenues of review and appeal and is unlikely ever to accept that what he did was not only unlawful, but reprehensible.

[59] Mr Nottingham, the message to you and to others by way of deterrence is that “anything goes” is wrong. The right to free speech or freedom of expression is not a paramount right. It must be balanced against the competing rights of others in the community to be free from harassment, to be protected from harm by others who malign, abuse, threaten and undermine their peace and safety. Your activities were not harmless. Nor were they justified by your sense of injustice or unfairness. They were destructive of good order and good human relations. They were misconceived and wholly disproportionate to the harm or injustice that you believed you and others had suffered.

Given his extensive record Nottingham is likely to appeal everything he can. The Crown may also appeal the sentence – they sought a substantial prison sentence.

There are also some important lessons for bloggers in the judge’s comments.

“He makes the concession…that he has never denied that he has supplied information to the website…”

I dispute that, but that’s for another story.

I will note however that on the Lauda Finem website it was often denied that ‘Team LF’ included people in New Zealand, even though it was obvious they used a large amount of New Zealand sourced material, their posts were almost exclusively New Zealand subjects, and their campaigns had things in common with campaigns on other websites.

Nottingham has not been acting alone in all of this (the court suggested a prominent role), but associates are for another story.

The laudafinem.com website started up in July 2010, and was shut down by a New Zealand court order in late 2016. Another site was set up but ceased activity in March 2017.


NOTE: This case was subject to suppression (non-publication orders) – and the private prosecutions of myself and three others were also bound by this. I have been advised by the court that this suppression lapsed on the sentencing of Nottingham.

However the case involves other cases that are still subject to non-publication orders (suppressed), so details on them must not be published.

Due to on-going suppression orders comments here will be strictly moderated. Do not try to identify anyone who is not named in the quotes from the court document here in any way.

Dermot Nottingham adjudicated bankrupt

I believe there is significant public interest providing this information.

Yesterday (11 September 2018) in the Auckland High Court Dermot Gregory Nottingham was adjudicated bankrupt, with claimed debts of about $2 million “yet he claims to be penniless”. That amount includes about a quarter of a million dollars in court costs owed to a number of ex-defendants in unsuccessful public prosecutions,

It has taken about a year to get to this point. Some background in this judgment: HONEY & Ors v NOTTINGHAM [2018] NZHC 575 [29 March 2018]

In July Nottingham tried to avoid bankruptcy by putting a proposal to creditors. If more than 50% of creditors with more than 75% of the debt vote in favour of a proposal it can be considered for acceptance by a court as an alternative to bankruptcy.

The proposal passed a vote:

[13] As I understand it, insofar as the critical question of whether to accept or reject the proposal is concerned, Mr Nottingham’s judgment creditors, Mr and Mrs Honey and Mr Taka, HT & E, Mr Prentice, Allied Press and Mr George, voted against the proposal and all other creditors voted for it. The number and value of the votes in favour of the proposal dwarfed those of the judgment creditors. Accordingly, a resolution to accept the proposal was passed.

But this was appealed because many of the alleged creditors provided no evidence. Regulation 12 stipulates that creditor claim forms must “have attached to it evidence of the debt and any other evidence supporting the claim.”

[23] On the evidence I am satisfied that none of the creditors whose claims are the subject of this appeal lodged claims with [proposed trustee] Mr Whitley which came remotely close to complying with Regulation 12.

These include claims of over $1.2 million from associates of Nottingham – Phillip Nottingham, Earle McKinney, Marc Spring and Cameron Slater – who have been involved in various litigations with Dermot Nottingham (including the attempted prosecution of me) .

[28] In my judgment, Mr and Mrs Honey and Mr Taka have established that Mr Whitley was wrong to have accepted the claims of the general creditors and allowed them to vote. I propose to allow the appeal and overturn his decision.

Mr Nottingham’s application for approval of his proposal

[29] The effect of overturning Mr Whitley’s decision to accept the claims of all creditors who voted in favour of the proposal entirely undermines the vote in favour of the proposal at the meeting. It means that 100 per cent of those creditors eligible to vote voted against the proposal. In those circumstances, there is no question of approving the proposal.

The judge then moved on to the bankruptcy application, which as well as the original application had another argument.

[39] There is a further consideration namely that Mr Nottingham has, since Mr and Mrs Honey and Mr Taka commenced their proceedings for an order that he be adjudicated bankrupt, put a proposal to his creditors in which he asserts that he has no assets and debts in the order of $2 million. As Associate Judge Christiansen said in
Re Wesley Liddle the presentation of a proposal by an insolvent to his or her creditors evidencing significant indebtedness may itself be an independent act of bankruptcy in terms of s 22 of the Insolvency Act where it carries the implication that he does not intend to meet his financial obligations.

[40] Mr and Mrs Honey and Mr Taka have now filed and served an amended application dated 6 August 2018 referring to this second possible act of bankruptcy on Mr Nottingham’s part.

[41] There is nothing in any of the arguments which Mr Nottingham advanced in opposition to the application of Mr and Mrs Honey and Mr Taka which persuades me that I should exercise my discretion by declining to make an order adjudicating him bankrupt.

[42] On the contrary, as Mr Grove submitted, there is, in this case, a significant public interest in making such an order.

[43] Mr Nottingham has a demonstrated history of commencing private prosecutions against individuals in which he has thus far been entirely unsuccessful.

He was unsuccessful in such a private prosecution against me. After eleven months of trying he withdrew the charges in June 2016. Costs were subsequently awarded against him, and that is the debt I claim as one of the creditors.

[44] Unquestionably these apparently groundless prosecutions have wreaked havoc with the lives of those wrongly accused of criminal activity. In my view, if Mr Nottingham’s bankruptcy puts an end to this practice on his part, then that is a public good.

[45] Furthermore, as Mr Grove also submits, whilst there may be some room for doubt as to whether all of those persons who claim to be creditors of Mr Nottingham and who filed the claims in the context of his proposal that I have overturned are all bone fide creditors, if they are, it would seem that Mr Nottingham’s creditors have paid to him something in the order of $2 million (in cash or value) over recent years and yet he claims to be penniless. In my view, there is a public interest in Mr Nottingham being bankrupted so that the Official Assignee can investigate his affairs to establish whether all of these claims are legitimate and if so what has happened to the $2 million which Mr Nottingham has received but claims no longer to have available to him.

[46] For those reasons, I propose to make an order adjudicating Mr Nottingham bankrupt on the application of Mr and Mrs Honey and Mr Taka.

Given his history of litigation and appeals and threats to appeal this is unlikely to be the end of the matter, but as of 3:30 pm 11 September 2018 Nottingham is adjudicated bankrupt.

Further to “these apparently groundless prosecutions have wreaked havoc with the lives of those wrongly accused of criminal activity”, Nottingham was convicted and sentenced on five charges of criminal harassment (and two or breaching suppression). from the sentencing notes:

During the five year period the defendant undertook numerous campaigns of harassment against a number of individuals, the most egregious and persistent of which were represented by the five complainants in the trial. I concluded that his conduct by publishing said articles, through other intimidating and harassing conduct – including threatening, watching, photographing, following – was either carried out by Dermot Nottingham or at his direction and that he knew his conduct was likely to cause the individuals to fear for their safety or the safety of family members.

Nottingham has not acted alone.

It must also be said in the context of the evidence in this case that the degrees of attack, abuse, harassment and it’s relentless nature appears to be far worse in Dermot Nottingham’s case than in the examples he relies on to claim unfair or biased treatment.

He was sentenced to 12 months home detention – see Blogger dodges prison over court suppression breaches, harassment campaigns. That and the bankruptcy are unlikely to be the end of the matters.

In my case Nottingham’s first appeal against costs (High Court) was unsuccessful. He is now seeking leave from the Court of Appeal with a hearing set for next month. It is now over three years since this saga started (in July 2015). Another appeal is pending in another matter (with some common links) in the Court of Appeal this month.

The Nottingham private prosecutions

It will have been obvious to those following Your NZ in July-August 2015 that there was some legal stuff happening. But I was then gagged through suppression orders so had to be careful what I posted. Until now.

Yesterday morning NZ Herald reported Blogger dodges prison over court suppression breaches, harassment campaigns

A blogger described as “malicious and nasty” has narrowly avoided prison after breaching suppression orders in a prominent Auckland court case and leading a prolonged campaign of criminal harassment against five people, including a former MP.

Dermot Gregory Nottingham was sentenced to 12 months’ home detention and 100 hours’ community work today in the Auckland District Court, after what Judge Jonathan Down described as a blatant and contemptuous breach of court orders and an arrogant view of right and wrong.

A jury found Nottingham guilty of five criminal harassment charges and two breaches of court suppression orders following a trial, in which Nottingham represented himself, during April and May.

That case is closely linked to my legal misadventure, so much so that suppression on that was also applied to a private prosecution of myself and others.

I posted on this sentencing, trusting that the Herald would have carefully complied with suppression orders. Yesterday I sought and eventually got confirmation from the Auckland District Court that suppression had lapsed in that case, which meant that it will have also lapsed in my case.

Nottingham has a legal history that goes back a long way, including private prosecutions. That’s a different story.

This story is long and complicated – I will keep it as concise as possible – about my legal dealings with him have been going for three years, and are not over yet, with an application seeking leave to appeal currently before the Court of Appeal, with Nottingham promising to take it to the Supreme Court if he fails (again) with that.

While Nottingham is at the centre of all of this he has not acted alone. In my case others have been closely involved, including long time business associate and employer Robert Earle McKinney, brothers Phillip and I believe Antony (the Netherlands LF connection), Marc Spring and Cameron Slater.

In April 2015 NZ Herald published a report. A revised version of this is still online: Man accused of suppression breach

An Auckland man accused of breaching a high-profile name suppression has been granted name suppression himself.

The man appeared in Auckland District Court today facing two charges of contravening suppression orders. He is also charged with five counts of criminal harassment.

That article was republished by the Otago Daily Times, and as the original headline referred to it being a blogger it also attracted interest posts here on Your NZ and at The Standard.

Slater was an obvious candidate, as he had a history of suppression breaches resulting in convictions on multiple charges, but I could quickly rule him out. I did quite a bit of searching but ended up having no idea who this person was,

As with most stories it quickly faded into history. But it resurfaced in July when out of the blue I was served with court papers that were an application to lay charges against me for breaching suppression by a private prosecutor, Dermot Nottingham. This confirmed that Nottingham was the subject of the April article, the first time I knew it was him. At that stage I had heard of him but knew little about him.

Nottingham says he first went to the police but they declined to act, so he decided to conduct private prosecutions against myself, APN (Herald), Allied press (ODT) and Lynn Prentice.

Earle McKinney arranged for service of the papers. I willingly complied, having no idea what they were about. The application to lay charges claimed a conspiracy between police, court officials and the Herald.

It alleged that I had ‘entered into an online agreement with Lyn Prentice’, which was ridiculous – lprent had just re-banned me from the Standard (for a year) on 1 April 2015 after a previous one month ban in March.

About a week later Marc Spring served two charging documents – alternative charges of suppression breaches. This raised some suspicions, because about the time the first document was served Spring had suddenly started niggling at me, including suggesting I might be fucked over by Whale Oil like someone else had been, on Twitter in tandem with an LF account.

I did some investigating and found that Spring had been commenting on Your NZ since January 2015 using multiple pseudonyms. I had clashed with him when, as I later found out, he started attacking a Matthew Blomfield which was in breach of a Slater court agreement and a restraining order against Spring. That is a whole different (albeit related) story (also still before the courts, with a defamation hearing Blomfield v Slater due later this year).

The charges were odd – I was charged with publishing an article, the name of which matched a post at The Standard. Through the course of the proceedings I pointed out this was ridiculous and completely unfounded but that was ignored by the courts and by Nottingham.

As with much of Nottingham’s legal stuff it is difficult to know what is incompetence and what is deliberate confusion and chaos. I think it is usually a mangled mess of both.

Nottingham rang me soon after the charges were served, and we exchanged emails over a couple of days. He suggested I should plead guilty. Believing I was probably not guilty, I declined to commit, instead saying that I would seek legal advice. Over the next couple of weeks I found a lawyer to advise and represent me. This was my first experience with law and courts so I needed help. I (and my lawyer) had no idea what we were getting into.

A day or two after declining to confess I received an abrupt email from McKinney, saying he had been given instructions to scour the Internet, threatening further prosecutions, and demanded I respond by 4 pm that afternoon. I had no idea who McKinney was at that stage.

As it turned out McKinney was working closely with Nottingham. They always shared the same email address, Nottingham was purportedly an employee of McKinney, with both acting for Advantage Advocacy Ltd – now in liquidation.

McKinney eventually provided a witness statement in the prosecution. He also acted for Nottingham, including signing court submissions on his behalf. He is not a lawyer and I suspect this isn’t legally correct.

After another not very nice email from McKinney that was seemingly dealt with, but McKinney did a lot over the next few months to, I believe, lay further charges and when that failed, Nottingham tried to get a whole bunch of accusations included in his prosecution. The court never allowed this.

In July the LF website had already posted about me being in a ‘dirty dozen’ of journalists and bloggers and made other insinuations. In August more posts started to appear, targeting me, making outlandish claims and accusations, and these continued for about a year.

LF had in the post campaigned on some worthy causes. Occasionally. But I found out that mostly they found fragments of facts, grossly embellished them, jumped to ridiculous conclusions, and generally attacked and defamed many people. Their website was eventually shut down after court action against them. They popped up somewhere else but seem to have been stopped from posting there last year.

Many of the LF campaigns against people were closely aligned with Nottingham’s so-called justice campaigning. LF detailed a number of instances where they and Nottingham worked together.

And in the court case in which Nottingham has just been sentenced, according the the Herald report, he admits “supplying information to an overseas website”. It happens that that ‘overseas website’ contained almost entirely New Zealand related content, often closely related to Nottingham’s legal crusading.

It appears that LF was based overseas simply to try to avoid New Zealand law. That eventually blew up in Nottingham.

The private prosecution progressed slowly, with many delays and disruptions.

The first hearing was in September in Auckland where the charges were filed. My and Allied Press’ charges were transferred to Dunedin where they should have been laid in the first place – in the court closest to the defendants,

What followed was a hopeless legal mess.

When charges are laid within 15 working days the prosecutor is supposed to provide initial disclosure, that is supposed to clearly explain the charges and the case against you. It is normally brief, especially in simple cases as theoretically this one should have been, a few pages. That was due by mid August 2015.

After Nottingham failed to provide this lawyer’s requests were sent, the court directed compliance, and then set dates by which it had to be provided. By late November it still hadn’t been done – and at one stage Nottingham said he was deliberately withholding it pending ‘further investigations’.

Finally in early December documents arrived. A lot of them. A pile 9 cm thick. Largely a pile of nonsense. Much of it was screen shots of web pages and printouts of articles and posts. Most if not all of it would have been inadmissible. It was a monster of a mess, but it all had to be read in case there was something critical to the case in it. That gets expensive when you’re paying a lawyer. I did quite a bit of the reading and summarised.

One interesting thing I discovered – Cameron Slater was an informant for the prosecution.

McKinney’s witness statement was included, most if not all would have been inadmissible.

An expert witness was named, but nothing ever eventuated from them. They turned out to be the creditor that initiated the liquidation of Advantage Advocacy.

When lawyers made it clear that disclosure was manifestly inadequate the judge arranged a conference call in mid December to organise a way forward. Nottingham filed memoranda the morning immediately prior – very late filings became the norm – and tried to turn it into a move to imprison me by Christmas.

The judge rejected this, but due to the disruptions adjourned for another conference the following day. More late filings, another shambles. Nottingham blocked me from listening to his accusations and claims. As a result the judge ruled that conference calls were out of the question.

A date for the next hearing was set. Nottingham said he needed a holiday and wanted to wait until the following March. The judge obliged – throughout the protracted court proceedings I have been amazed and disappointed how much different judges have pandered to Nottingham, at the expense of the defendants.

in 2015 there was already talk amongst lawyers and the judge of a possible dismissal and costs.

At the March 2016 hearing Nottingham was pressed to name additional witnesses. He put forward Slater as an expert witness.

Slater never provided a witness statement as is required. He seemed to want to distance himself from the prosecution – I will give him the benefit of doubt on this, despite Nottingham’s practice in other cases of trying to introduce witnesses and evidence at trial, giving the defences no time to deal with them properly. Again I don’t know if this is incompetence or a tactic.

Then in April 2016 Nottingham had a serious motorcycle accident. He ended up in hospital for a few weeks. He sustained a head injury – not the first. He has also claimed to have had a serious motorcycle accident in I think 1998, also suffering from a head injury with ongoing effects.

Illness has been a prominent factor in a number of Nottingham’s legal proceedings, often resulting in delays and excuses for non-compliance with timetables and legal requirements.

The accident made a very messy prosecution worse, impossible.

Both I and Allied Press filed for dismissal of charges and a hearing was set for late June 2016.

I made a decision to dispense with counsel and represent myself. By now I had learnt a bit about how legal and court processes worked. I considered the case was hopeless, so I was better saving money and trying things on my own.

So I prepared for the dismissal on my own, and filed submissions, as did Allied Press, always on time. Nottingham didn’t. He couldn’t travel to Dunedin so engaged a lawyer to act for him.

The week before the dismissal hearing the APN/Prentice cases went to trial in Auckland. At that Nottingham failed on a fundamental aspect of a suppression breach case – he could not identify the publisher owners. It turned out he had charged the wrong herald company. Slater appeared as a witness and conceded that Prentice was not an identifiable owner of The Standard. So the case was dismissed.

Other allegations, of actually suppression breaches, never got tested at trial, although the trial judge said they were unlikely to have succeeded.

As in my and Allied’s case, Nottingham was claiming that if particular words could be selected out of an article and used in Google searches, and that led the searcher to a particular website, and words were taken from that and googled again and led them to another website, and then other words were used to search that site, and that led to articles that breached suppression, then the publisher of the original article was guilty of breaching suppression.

That on it’s own is nonsensical.

McKinney had tried to show how this could be done. But he already knew what he was looking for. In that case it’s easy to know what words to use in searches to find what you want, and which search results to sue to move on the next search step. Especially when the computer search history knows you already have an interest in the destination website.

The charges claimed about fifteen suppression breaches because that’s how many there were on the destination website. I don’t think there’s any way of proving an average member of then public would end up finding and reading one let alone all fifteen.

What is more preposterous is that Nottingham was claiming that information he supplied to a foreign website revealing the identity of people with New Zealand suppression was fine, but if he picked words out of other people’s articles that he could then use in Google to find his articles then that other person was guilty of a suppression breach.

I arrived at the dismissal hearing in late June, eleven months and the eight hearing after charges were laid, to find out from Nottingham’s lawyer minutes before the hearing was to begin that Nottingham wanted to withdraw the charges.

Leave was put to the judge, and after he clarified that due to time new charges couldn’t be laid the charges were dismissed.

Both Allied and I initiated proceedings to claim for costs.

It is well known that standard costs available in failed prosecutions are ridiculously small. But you can ask for indemnity (actual) costs at the judge’s discretion, if certain criteria are met.

A costs hearing date of September 2016 was suggested and a submission timetable was set. Both Allied and I submitted ion time as usual. Nottingham never served a submission in response.

District courts are under a lot of time pressure. It wasn’t until early March 2017 that we got a hearing set.

Prior to the hearing the court suggested that Nottingham had filed a submission. When we stated that we had not been served the court directed that it be served, and had to repeat the directive when it wasn’t forthcoming.

A few days before the hearing i ended up having to go to court and spend a morning reading their copy. They wouldn’t let me take it away or take a copy of it.

As was typical it was long. It comprised of an attempt to re-litigate his failed prosecution, claiming that we were obviously guilty and but for his accident we would have been convicted, so should be treated as convicted. A withdrawal of charges means that legally we are ‘not guilty’.

And most of it was an affidavit from Nottingham’s brother Phillip. addressed to the World Court, the United Nations and other international legal bodies claiming that it was unfair that Dermot was being prosecuted.

It was a waste of time me reading it, and the only consolation was that it must have been a much bigger waste of time for the Nottingham’s writing it and sending it around the world (if they did that).

Nottingham couldn’t attend the costs hearing. he tried to get yet another delay, but the court insisted that the hearing go ahead.

After the hearing started the court official interrupted the judge and handed him some papers. It was an even later than usual memorandum from Nottingham. Remarkably the judge adjourned the hearing, giving us half an hour to read and work out how to deal with the memorandum.

The hearing resumed, and the judge accepted our suggestion that the memorandum was more ranting nonsense irrelevant to the costs applications.

Then he was interrupted again – another memorandum was hot off the printer. This time the judge refused to accept it.

At the end of March 2016 we got a judgment awarding us costs. The problem was, it was unclear what costs we had been awarded, it didn’t make sense. We had little choice but to go to the High Court with an appeal.

The appeal took place in Dunedin in July 2017. Again Nottingham filed late, but before the hearing this time. he appeared by AV link from Auckland.

Again Nottingham claimed we should be considered guilty because it was obvious he was right and his case was not defendable.

The judge found otherwise and the appeal judgment was in our favour, in that it suggested that as bad faith was involved in the prosecution, and as needless cost had been imposed on both defendants due to the manner in which Nottingham had conducted the prosecution, that something approaching indemnity costs might be appropriate. he sent it back to the District Court judge to set a quantum of costs.

The DC judge decided that he had sufficient information and another hearing wouldn’t be necessary. And in a supplementary judgment in October 2017 he set a quantum of costs at 50% of indemnity costs.

This was a win, although I felt that the judge had not understood the complexities of the attempted prosecution and the hopelessness of the case, nor the vexatiousness of the prosecution. But I would have been happy to leave it at that rather than appeal again. Too much time, money and court resources had already been wasted.

But of course Nottingham appealed, so back to the High Court. He filed late again, despite that sort of abuse of process being a primary reason for having costs awarded against him.

This was a virtual repeat of the first appeal. Nottingham again tried to claim we should be considered guilty, and he claimed that the onus of proof should be on defendants (except \when he is a defendant I presume). And he asked that costs not just be quashed, but reversed and awarded to him.

That’s inane. I could only claim costs billed by my lawyer when I was represented. I could not claim for my own costs, or for lost time or anything. And as far as I know the same applies to Nottingham.

There is no way he could be awarded costs for what I paid my lawyer, which a reversal would presumably mean.

Nottingham lost the second appeal. Judges tend to want good reasons for overturning decisions of other judges. There wasn’t even a legal argument involved, it was a discretionary costs award.

But prior to the appeal Nottingham had already told me he would take it to the Court of Appeal and to the Supreme Court. He made it clear from early on that one of his aims was to inflict as much time and costs on us as he could, And unfortunately the courts kept letting him do exactly that.

So Nottingham went to the Court of Appeal seeking leave to appeal, as you have to do. He was late doing this so it’s out of time, and he also has to seek leave to do that.

This is pending, so as it is before the court I don’t want to say much about it. Submissions from both sides are required next month, with a hearing set down for 27 August – this is in Court of Appeal August fixture list (I am shown as Anor which is incorrect, I should be a separate case to Allied Press.

In the meantime the herald and Prentice have continued too, both having substantial costs awards. Nottingham’s conduct has been slammed – see NOTTINGHAM v APN NEWS & MEDIA LTD [2018] NZHC 596 [29 March 2018] and NOTTINGHAM v APN NEWS & MEDIA LTD [2018] NZHC 1004 [9 May 2018]. That is also going to the Court of Appeal.

The defendants in another failed private prosecution have also had large costs awards. A trial was set down for 3 days and it took three weeks, due to Nottingham’s ‘tactics’. Multiple appeals are also on the August fixture list.

A judgment creditor is filing for bankruptcy against Nottingham, who has accumulated about $250,000 in unpaid court costs. That’s ongoing and complicated, has been on the go since last year, and another story, but is partly covered in HONEY & Ors v NOTTINGHAM [2018] NZHC 575 [29 March 2018].

There’s a lot more detail of an around the attempted private prosecution, but that’s of little interest to most people.

This account is also probably too long winded and of little interest generally. So why write it?

If I had known what Nottingham was like in court proceedings three years ago when this began I would have approached it quite differently. at the time I looked and found very little. I think this is in part because he has scared off a lot of people from exposing what he does, because he is so litigious, and because he and his cronies can be very vindictive and abusive.

I suspect that even judges have pussy footed around him and let him away with far to much in part for fear of being featured on that notorious website where some judges haven’t been spared accusations, abuse and possible defamation.

Talking of defamation, there was one attempt that I think is still before the courts: see MALTESE CAT LIMITED v DOE [2017] NZHC 1634 [14 July 2017] and MALTESE CAT LIMITED v JOHN DOE AND/OR JANE DOE [2017] NZHC 1728 [25 July 2017], in which it is alleged that Nottingham used the attack website as part of a paid for campaign in a domestic dispute.

Why was I included in the private prosecutions? That’s probably a story of it’s own, but I can think of a number of possibilities:

  • Slater held a grudge against me because he has a very thin skin when held to account for crap that he does
  • Spring had a grudge against me for stopping him from using Your NZ in continuing attacks that could no longer be run on Whale Oil
  • LF had a grudge against me – they had reacted negatively when I confronted them on Twitter for making a baseless accuation
  • A post of Nottingham’s charge appeared on Your NZ and he connected that with a police/court/Herald conspiracy

I think that Nottingham et al saw me as an easy target. They tried to pressure and threaten me into pleading guilty to make it easier for them to succeed in the prosecutions of the Herald and Prentice.

And when I stood up to them and refused to buckle they did what they have done with others, they got very nasty, seeking vindictive retribution. This seems to be a common thing with them.

Slater had already found that the legal going can get tough, and seems to have distanced himself a bit, although he was still using Nottingham in legal proceedings a year ago – see BLOMFIELD v SLATER [2017] NZHC 1654 [18 July 2017]

With the conviction and sentencing, and also the bankruptcy proceedings, things finally look to be turning to custard for Nottingham, and it’s not over yet.

And I suspect that things haven’t turned out that well for his brothers or McKinney or Spring either, on top of the self trashing of any reputations they may have had.

Of course there’s a risk I may become a target of their wrath by posting this. But I think public interest – especially of anyone else who becomes a target – is important here.

 

 

Dermot Nottingham sentenced for criminal harassment, suppression breaches

Dermot Nottingham was sentenced in the Auckland District Court yesterday for breaching suppression, and for five counts of criminal harassment.

Internet blogger Dermot Nottingham was sentenced today in the Auckland District Court. Photo / Sam Hurley

The person who has also been harassing me online and through litigation

He was charged in April 2015 – see  the year he was charged, and he and associates of his continued harassing others after that – including me extensively, and others who were and are associated with Your NZ.

And it seems that Nottingham remains unrepentant,

It seems remarkable that he avoided a prison sentence, despite the Crown prosecutor suggesting a four year sentence. He was sentenced to 12 months’ home detention and 100 hours’ community work. Thee prosecutor said an appeal of the sentence would be up to the crown law office.

Nottingham plead not guilty and defended himself, and says he will appeal the conviction. That is no surprise – I need to be cautious at the moment about how much I say, but he is currently attempting what would be the third appeal on costs awarded against him as a result of a failed private prosecution  of me and others.

He is also currently involved in court proceedings with an attempt being made to have him declared bankrupt for failure to pay substantial court costs (I am one creditor).

See:

Also:

I and Allied Press were charged at the same time as Prentice and APN (Herald) but our cases were transferred to where they should have been laid, Dunedin.

NZ Herald has details: Blogger dodges prison over court suppression breaches, harassment campaigns

A blogger described as “malicious and nasty” has narrowly avoided prison after breaching suppression orders in a prominent Auckland court case and leading a prolonged campaign of criminal harassment against five people, including a former MP.

Dermot Gregory Nottingham was sentenced to 12 months’ home detention and 100 hours’ community work today in the Auckland District Court, after what Judge Jonathan Down described as a blatant and contemptuous breach of court orders and an arrogant view of right and wrong.

A jury found Nottingham guilty of five criminal harassment charges and two breaches of court suppression orders following a trial, in which Nottingham represented himself, during April and May.

In 2014, the brothers pleaded guilty to assault, were discharged without conviction and granted permanent name suppression by the High Court.

Just days later, Nottingham wrote his blogs naming the two brothers and publishing photos of them alongside details of the case.

Nottingham said of the breach: “It would seem odd to be punished for supplying information to an overseas website about two killers that received no punishment.”

Even more odd than Nottingham’s denial of doing anything wrong is his attempt to prosecute others for (he alleged) breaching suppression by helping people to search for and find the information he ‘supplied’.

As a result of Nottingham’s disregard for the court’s order, a police detective began investigating the website and found “several campaigns of harassment”.

Some of the five people identified as potential victims had gone to police but were told officers could do nothing, the court heard.

Nottingham’s harassment against his victims, all of whom have permanent name suppression, took place between 2011 and 2015.

And continued after he was charged, against me and others. It wasn’t just him involved, there were others actively involved as well. I won’t name them at this stage, until I find out what is able to be said – but there’s a lot to this story, and it is time it came out.

The blogger’s targets included business people, civil servants, and a former Member of Parliament.

Photos were taken of them and their homes and the allegations published online falsely claimed drug abuse and corruption.

Some long time regulars here will recognise how similar that sounds to what was published online about me and commenters from YourNZ – after Nottingham was charged. It may not have been him doing it, but it was closely associated with him.

Nottingham also made a veiled violent threat against one victim and wrote “two shots to be sure” alongside the person’s name.

One of the victims said they had been stalked and photographed, with their images appearing on the blog page.

I have posted here about veiled threats against me. Photos of me and my house were posted online.

And serious accusations made against me and others were simply made up, false. Some of my family were threatened and implicated in conspiracies. This was all done at least by people associated with or related to Nottingham, and he did have some direct involvement here.

Brian Dickey, Auckland’s crown solicitor, said Nottingham’s harassment was at the high end of the criminal spectrum, calling it “so malicious, so nasty”.

The prosecutor said the offending articles remained on the internet and are displayed prominently when the victims’ names are entered into a Google search.

“He shows absolutely no insight into his offending, no remorse.”

That is remarkable the articles still remain online.

Nottingham had, in part, argued a prison sentence would be manifestly excessive due to his health complications, some of which saw him hospitalised for a week during the trial.

However, Dickey attempted to rebut the claims by arguing Nottingham’s health would improve if he lost some weight.

Dickey also strongly opposed home detention and sought a sentence of up to four years imprisonment.

Nottingham said he never intended to threaten the safety of his victims, but Dickey was concerned he would now simply use someone else’s computer or phone to continue his harassment.

“And our business with Mr Nottingham will continue,” Dickey told Judge Down.

Good. So will mine.

Nottingham tried to ague at trial that his “articles” were covered by freedom of expression rights.

Bullshit. He blatantly broke the law.

And he’s a huge hypocrite. He and his cronies used a ridiculous court order to try and shut me up and shut YourNZ down.  See Court order discharged .

“People have different opinions about what is said in articles,” he said today. “The articles contained words that the jury found offensive … I’m not a bully.”

In my opinion he is a highly vindictive vexatious bullying bastard. I know others have similar opinions of him.

However, Judge Down said the right to free speech or freedom of expression is not a paramount right.

Nottingham, nonetheless, stood by his blogs and said his words remained true and would survive a defamation trial.

He also blamed his victims and said, “if they had been honest … none of this would have occurred”.

He keeps failing to accept any responsibility, and keeps blaming others – I have many examples of this that I hope to be able to reveal at some stage.

The judge the “unique” case showed Nottingham had an abrasive and combative approach to others.

“Mr Nottingham is unlikely to accept what he did was not only unlawful but reprehensible,” he said.

What he was charged for was reprehensible – and there’s a lot more, from my own experience and from what others have told me.

Why no prison sentence? He actually tried to get me imprisoned (December 2015 ‘in prison by Christmas’) because I stood up to his threats and bullying.

Nottingham has indicated he will appeal the jury’s verdicts, while Dickey told the Herald a potential appeal of the sentence would be a decision for the Crown Law Office.

I hope they carefully consider that.

When I get clarification on the status of suppression orders – while he claims free speech for himself Nottingham used courts to shut me up – I may give more detail on this.

In the meantime, no naming (or hinting) of the offending website please, that will be strictly moderated.

Given that Nottingham tried (and failed) to  prosecute the Herald for breaching suppressions (that he breached himself) my assumption is that they have carefully complied with any existing suppression orders in there article.

Still, please take care with what you say, but those of you here who were also targets may feel that some degree of free speech may be appropriate.

Nottingham has threatened me with further prosecutions and legal actions as recently as this year. I will continue to stand up to his bullying, but I will do it prudently.

The Marc Spring story

I think it’s worth recapping the Marc Spring story as it relates to myself and to Your NZ. Readers here have a right to know what has happened, and it is in the wider public interest to reveal what Spring and associates have done and continue to do, because I’m not the only one who they have chosen to, in Spring’s words, “fuck over”.

This fucking over is fairly serious stuff, involving many multiple identities and online outlets used to abuse, defame, entrap, intimidate and threaten, and involving the misuse of the legal system and threats to the extent of trying to gag and shut down Your NZ and get me in prison ‘by Christmas’.

Spring is the main focus here but associated with him and the ‘fucking over’ have been Dermot Nottingham, Cameron Slater and Lauda Finem. Slater is well known for ‘Dirty Politics’ and his bully boy blogging at Whale Oil, but is probably a junior partner in this.

Why have I been dragged in to what is a much bigger story that goes back fifteen years?

Probably because I decided to stop them using Your NZ to attack and defame Matthew Blomfield, despite court undertakings and restraining orders that were supposed to stop them doing it.

In part they are vindictive, malicious people who seem to play ‘fucking over’ as a game.

In part for reasons that I can’t currently disclose, because despite brazen breaches of court orders they have managed to also use the courts to put gags on some exposure of their activities.

In part because I think they saw me as a quick and easy target in an ongoing online rampage. They don’t seem to have expected me to stand up against them and expose them, and they have gone to desperate measures to try and shut me up, including attempts at entrapment and making false claims to courts.

Prior to 2015 I had barely heard of Spring or Nottingham and knew little about Lauda Finem.

But there had been a feud going on for years between Spring and Slater and Lauda Finem (with various interconnections) versus Matthew Blomfield (I knew little of him before this either). Both Blomfield and Spring had been associated with Hell Pizza and there was a falling out between Blomfield and others at Hell.

A hard drive containing ten years of Blomfield’s business and personal data including very personal family photos was given to Slater (and the contents probably made available to others). Slater posted a number of attacks on Blomfield at Whale Oil.

Blomfield filed for defamation against Slater. The defamation case is still dragging on, but during it’s protracted course Slater gave an undertaking that he wouldn’t attack Blomfield on Whale Oil.

So last year Spring started to use Your NZ to continue the feud against Blomfield, using a number of pseudonyms (something he has done elsewhere) to make it appear as if others supported his claims. One other person that I’m aware of joined the attacks, Dave G. Just about everyone else doing it were identities used by Spring.

Blomfield contacted me claiming comments on Your NZ were unfair and defamatory. I agreed on some and deleted them. I disagreed on others and left them. Blomfield accepted my decisions. I did all of this openly, and I gave Blomfield a right of response.

The attacks against Blomfield on Your NZ continued by Spring and Dave G. I was later to find out that this was despite the courts giving Blomfield a restraining order against Spring in April 2015.

I have evidence of all of this that shows Spring using multiple identities from multiple locations, including from his workplace.

In July things changed quite dramatically.

Lauda Finem posted their first of what has been a number of posts that include attacks, defamation and false accusations against me. My photo was included in a ‘dirty dozen’ of journalists and bloggers – you have to laugh at some of the ironies in all of this. Lauda Finem, Spring and some others are the dirtiest I have encountered online.

I have been implicated in a cacophony of conspiracy claims that get more bizarre with each post. That’s another story that is quite hilarious. They call themselves justice campaigners and investigators. They deserve a top Tui award.

In July Spring was involved in serving me with legal papers for Nottingham. Slater also played a part in this but it can’t be disclosed at this stage.

Lauda Finem put up more posts attacking myself and Blomfield, separately and combined. While they use skerricks of truth they fabricate many of their claims – I don’t know if they are deliberate lies or if they believe their fantasies, I suspect a mixture of both.

And at the same time as the legal action was initiated and Lauda Finem started to post on it @LaudaFinem and @Marc Spring started to attack and harass me on Twitter with false claims, insinuations and abuse.

This tag team has continued off and on until the present. Last night @LaudaFinem repeated a “boozy” claim and added a new one – “likely using prescription med’s for the psych problems”. That’s fairly typical concocted false accusations that look like transference, they often accuse others of what they do.

Interestingly the only other person to suggest that I have psych problems is Dermot Nottingham via email.

I’ve received a number of emails from different people but mostly from a common source threatening a range of things. In addition there have been attempts to entrap me via email and phone (text). There’s some very stupid stuff. That’s for another time.

From July there was an ongoing campaign waged against me by Lauda Finem posts and  the @LaudaFinem and @marcspring tag team on Twitter.

There was also an onslaught of attacks on Your NZ by people using multiple IDs, including Spring and Nottingham and one or two others. There seems to have been two aims – to try to train wreck comments threads, and to entrap.

They were trying to show that a lack of moderation was a problem by causing problems. This was extreme at times.

It escalated in October when Spring planted comments (from his workplace) that he was later to try and use in an attempted legal action aimed at shutting down Your NZ.

At the same time a Spring pseudonym also linked to a new Lauda Finem post that was an insidious attack on someone just because they happened to be a commenter at Your NZ – Mike C, although an ongoing feud between Mike C and Whale Oil may also have been a factor. This included photos and insinuations about family members.

An attack on Alan Wilkinson was also posted at Lauda Finem, I presume because he pointed out how stupid they were. They have a history of reacting badly to having their stupidity pointed out.

In November Spring launched a legal attack. Slater and Nottingham were associated with this. It highlighted their legal incompetence and also the lengths they were prepared to go to to shut up and shut down any critics.

Spring posted a notice of a court order on Your NZ under the Harmful Digital Communication Act (HDCA) via a “press release” (which showed Nottingham as author) just after 5 pm on a Friday. It was a litany of lies and errors.

They had managed to con the court into ordering I remove all references to Spring on Your NZ, and that I put in place a system of full time moderation.

It wasn’t just me they wanted to gag, it was all of New Zealand according to the press release:

“The statutorily enforced moderation of blog site comments should be made law in an immediate amendment to the HDCA, with the addition that the website owner is liable for any comments that are posted after moderation. If these additions were to become law, the significant expense to date will have been worth it” said Mr Spring.

Were they serious? Of course their intention was for this to apply to other blogs, not their own. David Farrar says that it would mean he would have to shut down Kiwiblog. All the other blogs like Whale Oil and The Standard effectively couldn’t operate. And it couldn’t be limited to ‘blogs’ when most of the online comments are on Facebook, on Twitter, on Reddit, on the Trademe message boards etc etc.

A major way in which the internet operates is unlikely to be changed so a few nincompoops can impose mass gagging to avoid a bit of exposure while their own blogs continue with impunity.

There were a number of problems with the court order, including.

  • I wasn’t notified correctly
  • I wasn’t advised as I should have been prior to the order being made
  • The HDCA has no provision for gagging a website
  • Procedures required by the HDCA weren’t followed
  • The part of the HDCA being used doesn’t come into effect until 2017.

A few days later the judge discharged the order – see Court order discharged – because it had been made “without jurisdiction”.

I presume the judge and the court were embarrassed by being sucked in by legal incompetents. They wouldn’t let me view the files (that Spring had failed to provide as required).

Lawyers said that if a lawyer had submitted such a flawed action to the court they would have been in serious trouble.

But it didn’t end there. Spring and others threatened further legal actions along the lines of “Mr Spring is unsure whether Mr George could operate his blog from a prison cell” (from the press release).

Quite a bit more was attempted that I can’t currently reveal.

The posts at Lauda Finem kept appearing with ever more bizarre claims. Everyone in New Zealand who shares my surname could be insinuated – some actually have been.

More attempts have been made to plant ‘evidence’ and induce me into doing things that could be then potentially legally actionable.

The @laudafinem/@marcspring tag team continues.

The bursts of attention they give me are signs of other things happening. Pressure is mounting on them as their behaviours start to catch up on them. They keep digging deeper holes, and with no way out they lash out. I just happen to be one of their targets.

A beige tumble weed target they probably didn’t think would stand up to them and fight back.

They hate light being shone on what they have been doing for years – trying to fuck people over. But they are making more mistakes, and doing stupider things. I think there’s a lot of people who are waiting for them to get what they deserve. It could take a bit of time yet but trash generally ends up in the dump.

Note that there are probably complex associations between various people involved. For me it’s immaterial who owns what and directly or indirectly does what. All I am reporting on are some links, and behaviours in common.

If commenting please be careful and legal. I will remove anything I think could be a risk.

The ‘press release’ and court imposed moderation

A New Zealand judge has ordered moderation on a New Zedaland website dedicated to freedom of speech and open honest debate on politics and democracy.

Chilling.

Further to the ‘press release’ that was posted in a comment on Your NZ on Friday night and referred to in The press release.

Some people have pointed out the oddness of posting something which prominently displays one’s name while pointing out a court order that prohibits displaying the name here.

Did this person break their own court order? Did they post it thinking I wouldn’t edit out the name and would therefore be in breach of the court order? It wouldn’t be the first time this person has tried entrapment here.

In keeping with the new age of communication, and the content of the order, [Name withheld] intends serving Mr George by posting the order on Mr Georges website, which will be, for the last time in its history, as of today unmoderated.

As I have stated a number of times, this has never been an unmoderated website. In the past (prior to the last ten months or so) this site has required very little obvious moderation because people here respected and enjoyed the open, non-toxic environment. That all changed, largely due to the arrival of people associated with the press release.

“The  statutorily enforced moderation of blog site comments should be made law in an immediate amendment to the HDCA, with the addition that the website owner is liable for any comments that are posted after moderation. If these additions were to become law, the significant expense to date will have been worth it” said [Name withheld].

A ‘blog’ is a loose term for a public forum. It would be impossible to differentiate blogs from other forums.

Does this person propose “statutorily enforced moderation” of all forums for public discussion?

Twitter? Facebook? They are as open to abuse as any type of forum and can be and are used to abuse and defame on a much greater scale than so-called blogs.

Imagine what the Internet in New Zealand would be like with “statutorily enforced moderation”.

I think the ‘press release’ and the court action are extremely unlikely to prompt a change of law as stated. They are more likely to force a rethink about how the Harmful Digital Communication Act can be abused by people with agendas.

Nevertheless that it was possible to legally enforce moderation of this public forum is alarming.

Did [Name withheld] actually write that? The PDF version of the ‘press release’ emailed to me showed:

PressReleaseAuthor

This sounds to me the sort of thing Nottingham would write.

What appears to me to have happened in the past few months is that there has been a campaign by a small group of people to disrupt, harass, abuse, accuse people here and to legally compromise this website.

And now it appears that this campaign has been used to convince a judge to impose a court ordered form of moderation here just like that which has been proposed in the ‘press release’.

I think this is an abuse of legal process.

One of the key things in an open society with a healthy democracy is the freedom to speak about and debate political issues. These are key things that this website has been established to provide.

Your NZ was providing this successfully and without any moderation problems until the campaign of anonymous abuses over the past months, followed by Friday’s order.

Court enforced ‘moderation’ inhibits the freedom to speak and debate.

What has happened is an insidious assault on your rights and freedoms to discuss politics. I will do what I can to overturn the court order and hold those responsible for it to account.

Follow up to Lauda Finem

This is a follow up to yesterday’s post Lauda Finem and associates.

I’ve had quite a bit of support for collating and publishing information that many have talked about in parts for some time. Thanks.

I’ve had some cautionary advice. Thanks for that too. I’m aware there are risks, but I feel that the risks are justified by the need for it to be aired. For the public good.

I believe that what I have said is soundly based on facts. I could have said much more, and I hope that much more will be said, but most of that can wait, and some must wait.

What I didn’t say that is that material recently posted at Lauda Finem looks like it could only have come from Cameron Slater or close asociates at Whale Oil, and other information posted recently at Lauda Finem looks like it could only have come from [Precautionary delete] or close associates of his. At least, in both cases, it’s hard to think of alternate sources who would know the detail in posts.

I’ll leave yesterday’s post as it is for a while, unless I am informed of any inaccuracies that require correcting. Then I may add information to build a reference.

The only claim of inaccuracies that I’m aware of was this trweet:

Old news , unfortunately it’s also wrong, but again you’ll get to find that out; thanks anyway for confirming your contacts.

Them claiming something is wrong is as credible as them claiming something is right – backed up by nothing. There are many peoeple who have been targets of their tweets or posts who will be aware of how much they make up, how much they embellish, distort and lie.

By @Laudafinem standards their reaction was very lame and then stopped. That could mean they are busy working on their next hit job, or someone has finally woken up to how self damaging they were, or whatever.

And, I find this really quite funny:

You are blocked from following @Laudafinem and viewing @Laudafinem’s Tweets.

I’m not sure what that means. All I did was respond to a coulpe of their tweets politely and ‘like’ a couple of their tweets.

What prompted me to take the step of yesterday’s post?

The post on Lauda Finem on Thursday targeting me was also relatively lame same old, except for publishing a photo of my house with the full address. While it’s not difficult to get this information online that had nasty implications. See Death threats before attack. 

Like me Matthew Blomfield has been on the receiving end of the attention from some of those named yesterday. One is subject to a restraining order. (Note – no motive has been revealed for that attack.)

Last month @laudafinem tweeted:

Keep digging another couple of feet and you’ll have reached the magic six

In July my photo was included in a “dirty dozen” in a post at Lauda Finem. In August they did an attack post on me.

So Thursday’s post wasn’t a major.

But the post they did on Tuesday was what caused me to reassess my caution in what I posted about them. In that they attacked someone who was simply a commenter on Your NZ who had done nothing…except criticise some of those I named yesterday.

Some of Frankie’s criticisms date back to when she had clashes with Cameron Slater and his associates at Whale Oil over a year ago.

And I recongnised something familiar, because I believe that some of the reason why Lauda Finem et al have targeted me has links to clashes I had with Slater eighteen months ago. There are indications that Slater has had an involvement with others in various actions against me.

That it appeared that these same people would bear grudges and mount despicable attacks on people who just happen to get involved in the rough and tumble of blog commenting concerned greatly.

And it became obvious that they were not going to stop at the hit post on Tuesday. @Laudafinem continued.

On Saturday afternoon (NZ time) @Laudafinem tweeted something that was quite nasty directed at Frankie, and I’m fairly sure it was based on information that wasn’t discovered by someone on their own in Amsterdam.

So I warned them.

. If you persist on Twitter I’ll start to name all of you each time you attack unreasonably or lie. Your choice.

. Not joking. Your stalking, smearing, defaming, abusing, intimidating threatening and lying is going to be challenged more.

They ignored that. Early Sunday morning they tweeted:

Nice that you allowed WMD to change his moniker, makes it just that much easier when the IP addresses are subject to subpoena

Another threat of legal action. And it is based on what appears to be a completely false assumption about ‘WMD’.

So I wrote and posted Lauda Finem and associates, which I believe is based on facts (mostly) and honest opinion.

Why has no one gone to this extent before? Probably because of the threats and intimidation and abuse and defamation that would be likely to result. And possibly years of court action.

But I decided that people like Frankie and WMD, just ordinary peoeple comenting on Your NZ, should be somehow protected from this small gang on online bullies and thugs.

They seem to believe they could act with impunity. As some have said they may not be as protected from New Zealand law as they think their offshore hosting gives them.

But the process of law is slow. It takes months and often years to deal with things. That involves important processes that take time.

But it doesn’t deal well with online actions that can happen daily, or hourly.

So I chose to try an online solution – sunlight. These bullies have gone to great lengths to avoid having those responsible for their actions identified. But sooner or later that was going to fall aprt for them.

What now?

They have gone quiet for the last 24 hours, but that means little.

They could front up and accept responsibility, but I think they have been cowards too long to do that.

They could and should take the Lauda Finem website down, because that abuses and defames many many people. It is a disgrace, it is despicable, and the many victims of their attention deserve to know who was responsible.

And the threats of legal action threatened by @Laudafinem and laudafinem.com? If any action is taken who would do that?

I think we can be confident the Amsterdam police won’t be interested.

If the New Zealand police investigate I have a lot of information that may be of interest to them.

Court of Appeal: the Slater A = Z strategy

Yesterday a Court of Appeal judgment released regarding Cameron Slater versus Matthew Blomfield made several rulings against Slater.

It suggests that Slater’s legal abilities seem to be on a par with his boxing abilities – he has talked himself up but looks totally out of his depth.

SlaterBoxingFloored

One of  the judgments illustrates the Slater A = Z strategy, where evidence supplied suggests one thing but Slater claims the opposite.

Dermot Nottingham, an ‘associate’ of Slater on Blomfield’s defamation action against him, secretly recorded a phone conversation between a Mr Mattu and Blomfield.

In the conversation Blomfield tells Mr Mattu he wishes him well and doesn’t want to be mean to him, and wants to stay as far away from Mr Mattu and those he was association with. Slater claimed in the Court of appeal that this amounted to threats.

[32] Mr Mattu also gives evidence in the second affidavit that Mr Blomfield had threatened him over the phone, in person and in front of Mr Hare, and told him that “his brothers are connected to the gangs”. Later in the affidavit, he refers to his relationship with Mr Slater, recording his understanding that Mr Slater and his team are gathering evidence to bring Mr Blomfield, Mr Hare, Mr Johnson and Mr Sherriff to justice. Mr Mattu says he is “doing the same”.

[33] In his submissions, the main emphasis Mr Slater gave this second affidavit related to the fact that Mr Blomfield had telephoned Mr Mattu on Monday 5 October 2015. Mr Mattu recognised the caller’s number as that of Mr Blomfield and decided not to take the call. Instead, he telephoned Mr Slater to seek his advice. Mr Slater was unavailable, but an associate, Mr Nottingham, advised him to take the next call from Mr Blomfield and to record it. It was then arranged that instead Mr Mattu would telephone Mr Blomfield while Mr Nottingham remained on the line and both would record what was said. That then ensued, the discussion lasting for some 26 minutes. A little over an hour later, Mr Mattu again telephoned Mr Blomfield while Mr Nottingham was on the line. This time, the conversation lasted a little under four minutes.

[34] Transcripts of the discussion were then drawn up and attached to Mr Mattu’s affidavit. The presiding Judge in this Court asked Mr Slater to identify the parts of the transcripts of the phone discussions which were of most concern. Mr Slater referred to the following passages attributed to Mr Blomfield:

(a) Your affidavit wasn’t even written by you Shiv. I, the affidavit … I’ve matched it up with the previous stuff that [Mr Slater] and [Mr Nottingham] have written. Those guys wrote this affidavit for you, and what’s going to happen when you have to stand up in Court, and the first question the lawyer’s going to ask you when they cross-examine you is “Who wrote this affidavit?”

(b) But what you’ve gone and done with these boys, and getting involved with them, I wanted to ring you and make it clear to you that I have no issue with you, and I wish you all the best, and I’m sorry for what happened. But I’m not going to talk to you again, and I’m not going to have anything to do with any of this, for as long as I possibly can. If I’m forced to be involved, I’ll be involved, but I want to stay right away from this, the people you’re involved with, everything to do with it. I’m going to stay as far away as …

(c) As far as I’m concerned, you’ve gone and partnered up with the devil, and you’re asking me … I want to stay as far away from you and these people as possible. All I wanted to do was make it clear to you that I am not going to do anything mean to you. I feel sorry for you for what’s happened, and I’m sorry that things haven’t turned out.

It’s worth repeating that this was presented  as evidence of most concern,  the Court “asked Mr Slater to identify the parts of the transcripts of the phone discussions which were of most concern”.

[35] Mr Slater invited us to infer from the language used that these comments by Mr Blomfield were in fact veiled threats, that the observations were intimidatory and effectively asking Mr Mattu not to stand by his affidavit. We are not prepared to draw those inferences. As Mr Miles QC pointed out, Mr Mattu’s claims of intimidation have not prevented him from swearing detailed and damaging affidavits, including a claim that Mr Blomfield, together with Messrs Hare, Johnson and Sherriff are “members of an organised and sophisticated criminal gang”. Mr Mattu has also provided details of his address and place of work in the affidavits. It seems that, even if he is concerned, Mr Mattu has not been deterred from making serious allegations against Mr Blomfield by anything Mr Blomfield has said or done.

[36] We do not consider any of this evidence cogent in relation to the relevant findings made by Asher J.

The presiding Judge in this Court asked Mr Slater to identify the parts of the transcripts of the phone discussions which were of most concern

A dictionary definition of cogent: convincing or believable by virtue of forcible, clear, or incisive presentation; telling. 2. to the point; relevant; pertinent.

Another related practice is to make claims withoput providing supporting evidence:

[30] We do not regard this evidence as cogent. While Mr Mattu says he is fearful, he gives no evidence of any direct or particular threat of physical violence…

Accusations without evidence. Accusations with evidence that suggests the opposite.

And I don’t think this is uncommon from Slater and his associates. I’ve seen other examples, for example Lauda Finem posts are riddled with accusations without evidence. There’s been examples in comment threads here on Your NZ. I have also seen examples in emails involving associates of Slater. And in other court documents, which other judges have stated as being mostly inadmissible evidence.

The above examples are as presented by Slater to the Court of Appeal.

One could wonder whether Slater uses the same level of backing claims and accusations that he makes outside a court of law, for example in Whale Oil posts.

Readers can make their own judgment on that.

And you can read the full judgment for yourself:

I should point out here that over the last year or so a number of claims have been made about Matthew Blomfield on Your NZ, not dissimilar to what has been raised in this Court of Appeal judgment.

I believe that some people have genuinely believed what they have stated, because they have believed claims posted and made by Slater,  [Deleted as per court order] and associates.

Others have been trying to disseminate A = Z type claims in what has appeared to be a malicious manner, mostly [Deleted as per court order] (please don’t assume that of everyone who has attacked Blomfield).

The number of people believing Slater, [Deleted as per court order] and associates should be dwindling after judgments like this one made by the court of appeal.

Sorry Slater supporters, he has duped a lot of people into believing him, including John Key, but the more sunlight, the more we can see the reality. And I believe the unraveling is far from over.

Slater loses in Court of Appeal

Cameron Slater has failed in a Court of Appeal bid to overturn a High Court ruling that he didn’t have journalist protection from revealing his sources.

NZ Herald reports: Slater’s ‘journalist’ protection fails

An attempt by the blogger Cameron Slater to use a journalist’s legal protection for sources has failed.

The case came after the High Court told the Whaleoil blogger he qualified as a “journalist” but couldn’t hide sources for a series of blog posts about a businessman using a journalist’s legal protection because of the nature of the posts.

The case involves defamation proceedings taken by business Matthew Blomfield over blog posts made by Slater in 2012. High Court Justice Raynor Asher had ruled there was a “public interest” in the sources being identified as there was no public interest in coverage of Blomfield’s affairs and because of the “extreme and vindictive” nature of the disclosures. He also found the claim for journalistic source protection weakened because “the documents disclosed by the sources appeared to have been obtained illegitimately”.

The Court of Appeal has now rejected arguments by Slater that new evidence should overturn Justice Asher’s ruling and allow him to engage source protection rules for journalists in the Evidence Act.

Fail #1

While some of Slater’s new evidence was ruled out as hearsay…

Sounds familiar.

…the judges heard other evidence including that of a phone call made to Blomfield by a former business association who was now known to Slater.

A transcript of the phonecall had been produced by Slater, saying it showed “veiled threats” from Blomfield. When the appeal judges asked for examples, Slater selected a sample including one comment in which Blomfield was quoted saying: “All I wanted to do was make it clear to you that I am not going to do anything mean to you.” The Court of Appeal judges said they did not believe the comments were threatening.

Fail #2

This also sounds familiar, claiming the opposite of what was said.

The judgment revealed the phone conversation had been made by Blomfield’s former business colleague to Blomfield, and recorded without his knowledge by self-styled justice campaigner Dermot Nottingham, an “associate” of Slater.

I wonder what sort of  ‘associate’.

The judges also dismissed Slater’s claim Blomfield had acted in an intimidating way against one of those believed to have supplied information for the blog posts. The judgment said Blomfield had successfully sought the restraining order against a businessman  over a series of “aggressive and abusive” text messages he had been sent.

Fail #3

Claiming he “had acted in an intimidating way” but the opposite being found to have occurred also sounds familiar.

Slater said Blomfield seeking a restraining order on text messages which pre-dated Justice Asher’s decision was contrary to an assurance Blomfield had given saying “no witness was at risk”. The appeal judges dismissed the claim as unconvincing.

Fail #4

On the issue of the hard drive, Slater had attempted to put into evidence a letter from the Independent Police Conduct Authority which stated the hard drive had been found “to have never been stolen” The judges ruled it as inadmissible hearsay.

Fail#5

Slater was ordered to pay Blomfield costs.

Expect another begging post at Whale Oil? That would be contrary to a claim by Slater in another recent ruling detailed here where a judge said:

[49] I have no affidavit evidence of Mr Slater’s personal circumstances. The tenor of Mr Blomfield’s submissions is that he has backers and has access to funds. Mr Slater claimed that he had no backers and was self funded.

That’s a bit awkward.

Slater should consider getting better legal advice.

UPDATE: the judgement is now included underneath the Herald article
Slater’s ‘journalist’ protection fails

UPDATE 2: The judgment has now been posted: