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Submissions are open now - Tactical Ninja

Sep. 28th, 2011

12:25 pm - Submissions are open now

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They have opened submissions on the Video Surveillance Bill. They have generously given us until midnight tonight to make our submissions - yep, a whole 12 hours! So get to it.

Here's mine:

"I unequivocally oppose the Video Camera Surveillance (Temporary Measures) Bill.

I have three main reasons for opposing the Bill:

1. There already exists a mechanism by which a court may admit video footage covertly obtained without a warrant by discretion of the court in cases deemed sufficiently serious. This Bill is unnecessary.

2. Permitting police to covertly install video surveillance equipment on private property without a warrant is in breach of the Bill of Rights Act 1990 Part 2 Section 21: "Everyone has the right to be secure against unreasonable search or seizure, whether of the person, property, or correspondence or otherwise." The Bill constitutes a fundamental undermining of human rights in New Zealand.

3. Retrospectively making legal an illegal act already committed by police in order to influence the outcome of existing court cases undermines the power of the judiciary and places that power with the legislature. This goes against the fundamental principle of distributed power on which our government is founded, and makes a mockery of our justice system.

I cannot repeat more strongly: this Bill should not be passed in its current form. The use of urgency to read this Bill and the limited time allowed for submissions is unconcsionable and should be reprimanded."

Comments:

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From:t_c_da
Date:September 28th, 2011 01:30 am (UTC)
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I have likewise submitted on the bill using yours as a base and added a comment about the bill resulting in double jeopardy for anyone currently being illegally filmed.

I haven't asked to present personally to the committee.
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From:ferrouswheel
Date:September 28th, 2011 01:34 am (UTC)
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I made mine! Sneaky little government we've got in NZ right now.
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From:tatjna
Date:September 28th, 2011 01:36 am (UTC)
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You know what's scary? It's not even sneaky. They're doing it blatantly now. ;-/
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From:t_c_da
Date:September 28th, 2011 01:44 am (UTC)
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As my daughter put it to me at lunchtime

John Keys Government is anti-democracy
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From:tatjna
Date:September 28th, 2011 01:46 am (UTC)
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All your lot are old enough to vote now aren't they?
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From:friggasmuse
Date:September 28th, 2011 02:29 am (UTC)
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Lol, a WHOLE 12 hours?
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From:tatjna
Date:September 28th, 2011 02:30 am (UTC)
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Apparently it's urgent. We're not sure why it's urgent since a Bill that would have squared the issues they have away has been languishing in Parliament since last year and they've done nothing about it.

Yes, the New Zealand government is currently a joke.
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From:vernacularity
Date:September 28th, 2011 03:10 am (UTC)
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re your point 2, are they permitting video installations "on private property without a warrant"? my understanding in reading the Bill and the corresponding secions of the referenced Acts is that they are specifically referring to video surveillance from cameras installed:

- either pursuant to, or in the process of executing, a search warrant

- or from outside the boundaries

and saying that video surveillance gathered that way is not made inadmissible solely due to its having been gathered that way.

I am guessing that the relevant case decision -which they are carefully and specifically not attempting to overturn- came down on the side of saying that it was thus rendered inadmissible, regardless of the balancing requirements of Section 30(2)(b) of the Evidence Act 2006.

However, I also think that it effectively:

a) introduces the idea, (or paves the way for the development of the principle), that it is now always going to be permissible to covertly film someone from outside the boundaries of their property

and

b) appears to allow for the deployment of covert video surveillance in a property during ANY search warrant, which might be then used (and one would assume originally be intended) for the purposes of gathering evidence in relation to totally different matters than those for which the search warrant was issued, and this Bill excludes the possibility of arguing that it was thereby gathered improperly, making it more likely that frivolous warrants may be executed which are used for the purpose of installing cameras. Just like in the movies.

I may be wrong on that. I'm at work with a headache.
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From:vernacularity
Date:September 28th, 2011 03:12 am (UTC)
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or rather , where I say that it was thus rendered inadmissible, regardless of the balancing requirements I should say "that it was thus rendered inadmissible as part of considering the balancing requirements"
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From:tatjna
Date:September 28th, 2011 06:45 am (UTC)
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The way I understand it, the Bill will allow them to install video surveillance equipment on private property while there on other business - ie they won't need a warrant specifically for video equipment and will therefore have carte blanche to use it.
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From:pombagira
Date:September 28th, 2011 03:51 am (UTC)
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done.. yay

*nods*

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