Thursday, June 05, 2014


John Banks has been found guilty of filing a false electoral return.

He will be automatically ousted from Parliament if convicted (which should precipitate a by-election), but according to the Herald a conviction hasn't been entered yet and sentencing has been delayed until 1 August. Which looks awfully like the courts protecting the government's legislative majority for the remainder of the term...

(As for sentence, I have consistently favoured custodial sentences for electoral crime by politicians pour encourager les autres. And given the judge's findings that this was a knowing manipulation, a discharge without conviction would be manifestly unjust. But Banks is rich and white and powerful, so it sadly can't be rule dout. Equality before the law? We'll see)

As for what happens next, the blowtorch should really be going on the police who decided not to charge Banks. Clearly that decision was wrong, and it has brought the police and the law into disrepute. The officers responsible need to be held accountable for that.