Thursday, November 4, 2021

The rule of law takes another hit

Police impotently stood back and watched as a Mongrel Mob funeral procession consisting of more than 100 cars and motorbikes travelled to a gang member’s burial at Whenua Tapu cemetery, north of Porirua, in a brazen contravention of Covid-19 rules.

A video on Stuff showed the “mourners” occupying all three northbound lanes of the motorway. Two illegally stood on the back of the ute carrying the coffin. Others hung out of car windows. There were repeated bleeps on the Stuff video as motorcyclists passed beneath an overbridge, indicating they were shouting obscenities at the camera.

The procession didn’t take a direct route. It started at Cannons Creek, in Porirua East, and wound its way through Waitangirua, Ascot Park and distant Titahi Bay - the latter a diversion that would have taken the convoy through the heart of Porirua - before heading north. In other words gang members took an extravagantly roundabout route with the presumed intention of creating maximum disruption.

It was impossible to regard the funeral as anything other than a deliberate act of provocation - a taunt to the police by a criminal organisation confident that it can break laws with impunity. It was not so much a display of grief as a triumphal show of strength.

And the enforcers of the law meekly complied. Police merely “monitored” the funeral. Stuff quoted a spokeswoman as saying resources were pulled from across the region to “help” with the event.

“Help”? Did she really say that? Good grief. Things are even worse than we thought.

Stuff earlier quoted Inspector Nick Thom, Kapiti-Mana crime prevention manager, as warning that the public should expect significant traffic disruption. He said the police respected the mourners’ wish to grieve and he lamely urged the gang to be considerate to other road users. Fat chance.

Thom has the wrong job title. It should be crime facilitation manager. His comments indicated the police knew exactly what was in store. By allowing the procession to proceed, they were effectively accessories in the commission of multiple law breaches.

It was the third such display of gang strength, under the pretext of mourning, in a matter of weeks. Alert Level 2 guidelines stipulate no more than 100 attendees at funerals and require organisers to record the names and contact details of attendees (yeah, right) in case contact tracing might be necessary, but gangs have a nod-and-wink exemption despite being implicated in the spread of Covid-19 in Auckland, Northland and the Waikato.

National MP Simeon Brown pointed out that instead of insisting the Mob obey the law, police put the onus on the public to avoid parts of Porirua. This gives new meaning to the term “copout” and will inevitably lead people to wonder whose side the police are on. Brown called it “another example of why gangs feel they are above the law under this soft-on-crime Labour government, while law-abiding Kiwis are told to stay out of their way”.

The rule of law, already fragile and exercised highly selectively, has taken another damaging hit – as has public confidence in the police.

Footnote: The original version of this post included a second item about a judicial appointment which on further consideration (and for perfectly sound reasons) I subsequently decided to delete.  


Trev1 said...

But Jacinda says they are "marginalized" and she treats them as a protected species, showering them with government money and allowing them to roam at will. They also get invited to take tea in the Beehive with Ministers.

Under He Puapua they will have an equal say in governing Aotearoa. So better get ready to take the knee to the Mongrel Mob.

Doug Longmire said...

The criminal gangs also get $2,750,000 of freshly laundered criminal money returned to them, free and gratis.
This government is soooo NICE !!

hughvane said...

Stand by, anarchy has reached a new level of intensity in NZ/I Ate A Toheroa.

Imposter Coster calls the actions/inactions of his staff "policing by consent". Simon Bridges did his utmost to extract a clarifying definition of what that meant some months ago - but to no avail - so make of it what you will.

Andy Espersen said...

These gangs are having a whale of a time – and are pissing on both their iwis and on the Treaty of Waitangi in the process. It is immensely saddening to observe how gangs are now simply ignoring Maori old, proud culture and traditions.

On principle police should not interfere with a funeral cortege while it is taking place. But immediately afterwards any person responsible for obvious breaches of traffic rules or customary protocol should be taken to court and given a hefty fine.

Eamon Sloan said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Lindsay Mitchell said...

If 'might is right' becomes the modus operandi our meek and minimum police force will mean diddly squat. I don't think NZers understand what power those who live by a code of violence actually wield over the rest of us. They can pick you off by threatening your nearest and dearest. We are so 'enlightened' and complacent we don't have the imagination or wit to see where violent anarchy from a minority can go.

Terry M said...

Patched gang members to my mind are members of a criminal organisation. Right up there with the mafia. They are involved with drugs; violence and I have no doubt prostitution. In fact, they should be classed as terrorists or at the least "anarchists", but if the police were to move against them it would be seen as racism.
So, what we have is a dictator as a Prime Minister, who launders proceeds from criminal activity by giving it back to the gangs for drug rehabilitation. These gangs were the suppliers of the drugs that were the cause of the addiction.
The minister of police got rid of Armed Response Teams because the Māori and Pacific Island communities she represents do not want it. This minister is supposed to represent the interests of the police. This is the member of parliament for Christchurch East. How many Maori or Pacific Islanders are down there?
There are 8175 people recorded on the national gang list. An increase of 53% since Labour took office, which is a much bigger increase than labour promised for the police. Possible Labour got their recruiting screwed up?
Police strength around 12000.
Guess who will be the police under He Puapua.

Ricardo said...

A bit of relevant detail perhaps. Media reports there were four arrests, two vehicles impounded, 27 instant fines and five licences suspended. This is scarcely the Police standing by and doing nothing.

But let's take a deep breath and examine the counterfactual.

What would people like to have seen? A huge Police presence? Every tangi attendee put through a database search, every vehicle inspected? Piano wire strung across the motorway seems to be the wish of some. 200 hundred vehicles would mean 20, 30, 50 police vehicles interspersed in the column? That means immensely more inconvenience to the public. More importantly how would that be viewed by the mourners, by the wider Maori and Pasifika community? There needs to be a measure of judgment and thinking here I suggest.

What about the rights of every NZer to attend a tangi and express their grief in a fashion that they choose? Not just for Maori or Pasifika but Christian Pentecostal and Bah'ai as well. One rule for all remember.

Karl du Fresne said...


Thank you for drawing my attention to the reports of arrests. These had not been published when I wrote my blog post and I wasn’t aware of them until this morning.

I welcome news of the police action, but it came AFTER the event – AFTER the gang had flouted the law and caused unnecessary public disruption which the police knew to expect. In other words, too late. The same has happened previously.

There are two issues here. One is the Mongrel Mob’s contempt for the law and the other is the police response. We can’t do much about the first, but we are entitled to expect that the police will enforce the law and hold the Mob to the same requirements all other citizens are expected to observe.

Police action after the event is obviously better than nothing, but the fact remains that the funeral was allowed to go ahead at risk of harm and in the sure knowledge that it would interfere with the right of law-abiding people to go about their business without let or hindrance, to quote a lovely old legalism.

You talk about the right of people to express grief in a fashion that they choose, but the gang is claiming a right available to no one else. No conventional funeral consists of more than 100 vehicles travelling unnecessarily and noisily through several widely spread suburbs. Yes, gangs are entitled to honour their dead, but not to the extent of defying laws that ordinary people are required to obey.

This was a calculated challenge to the law, and the police let us down – again. The time to act was not after the event, but before the procession started out on its journey. The police could have placed a cordon around the tangi at Cannons Creek and insisted on compliance with the rules. They could have limited the number of vehicles and escorted the convoy to the cemetery, insisting that it take the route least likely to cause disruption. As it was, the video shows no police vehicles anywhere and a commenter who saw the convoy roll through Porirua didn’t see any either.

If asserting control over the event would have required a “huge police presence”, fine. This was a test of strength and the police blinked first. Every gang in the country now knows that as long as it has the numbers, it can defy the law with impunity.

Karl du Fresne said...

I should have added that if I was a cop, I'd feel ashamed. I bet plenty of honourable police officers do.

Doug Longmire said...

You are absolutely right Karl.
This was a direct middle finger, up yours, to society, from the New Zealand mafia.

CXH said...

Neighbour of mine is both a police officer and ashamed of what they get directed to do.

Graeme Peters said...

Thanks Karl. What is sad about the gangs is their promotion and idolisation of so called gangster behaviour, which gives young mokopuna no chance. In their eyes, crime is good. Stealing is encouraged. And if you are killed or harmed or do time after gangster behaviour, you are immortalized. Poor Rikki Enoka, just 18, was out stealing on a Sunday night with four younger gang criminals. He rode a stolen motorcycle at 5am into the back of a stolen car in Ngaio. Both these and another stolen motorcycle and stolen car a part of the night's booth on behalf of the gang. Strangely these facts were never reported in media coverage, probably covered upby police because of the government views that gangster should be supported no matter their criminal intent.

Doug Longmire said...

Thanks Graeme,
That is just another tragic story illustrating the cycle of gangster behavior. This tragedy, as Alan Duff has illustrated in both his fiction and non-fiction writings, is a recurring cycle which is at least partly encouraged by the government.
Hullo ! - not content with gifting gangs $2m+, and letting them them parade on mass through the streets, we witness Jackson contracting long term gang leaders to work for the government.

Hilary Taylor said...

Nobody else has the 'privilege' of overt public displays of machismo & 'FU' swagger...their undertakers wouldn't countenance it...except for gangs. I presume they simply take charge of the coffin and go their own way. The cops are complicit on the day and work that back a bit after with a few charges. Some local politician airily claimed they're 'normal people'...hope she convinced herself as everyone else was laughing at her 'Tui' moment. We all know about the govt pussy-footing that goes on now. Little wonder they milk it for all it's worth.

Orinoco Jones said...

In Jacinda Ardern's Aotearoa the police are the evil racist violent enforcers of white supremacism and the Mongrel Mob are the heroes battling racism and the ongoing effects colonisation in their quest to tear down the oppressive social structures and reconnect with their culture (which, incidentally, is a perfect, environmentally-friendly, left-wing utopia of tolerance and inclusiveness). I am surprised He Puapua doesn't call for funding and weapons for them. At this stage we are so far down the rabbit hole I am not even sure I'm joking.