Why the Pork Board wants the power to spy on you
Spies target animal rights campaigners
AN AUCKLAND private investigation firm has been caught out after it attached a sophisticated tracking device to a political campaigner's car – but left the device visible from outside the vehicle.
The GPS tracking device, which used a mobile phone connection to report the car's position to private investigators, had been attached with magnets.
It is the third time in three years the Sunday Star-Times has caught Thompson & Clark Investigations doing covert surveillance on political groups for corporate clients.
On April 22 this year, animal rights campaigners Jasmine Gillespie-Gray and Rochelle Rees were in Levin, where Gillespie-Gray was in court for filming inside a chicken-processing farm.
The judge dismissed the case and later that day the pair noticed a black box under Rees' car. When they removed it, they found the tracking device, a cross between a GPS receiver and mobile phone.
The Star-Times traced the device to Thompson & Clark Investigations, which had obtained the device from Auckland firm Argus Tracking Ltd, which advertises tracking services for companies to monitor their own fleets.
Thompson & Clark co-director Gavin Clark declined to comment on "anything we might do operationally".
Rees said the campaigners were upset but not surprised at finding the device "given the past spying we've had to put up with from Thompson & Clark". They were relieved they were able to spot it so easily: "Whoever put it there was incompetent, there's no other explanation."
She thought it was "very likely" Thompson & Clark was monitoring them for the Pork Industry Board.
So this is the reason the Pork Board want these new spy powers that the Government intend to ram through in October. Brothers, Sisters – mates. Whatever part of the political spectrum any of us come from, surely we can all see the vast dangers to our democracy in allowing not only the Police, but the entire bloody state these vast new surveillance powers that they want. We should not allow the Police the power to break into your home and spy on you without a warrant, and we sure as hell shouldn’t give that power to the bloody Meat Industry!
This submission on rights to silence from David Small follows on from warnings by the Human Rights Commission...
State agency spy powers 'chilling'
The Human Rights Commission yesterday warned Parliament of the "chilling" implications of a proposed law that would see the intrusive powers usually only available to the police extended to all agencies with enforcement responsibilities. It said that under the law, council dog control officers would be able to enter homes to install a surveillance device and the Commerce Commission would be able to detain people. Inland Revenue would get the powers to assist its tax investigations, while the Meat Board would get them to enforce breaches of export rules.
WHAT'S IN THE BILL
Video surveillance, watching private activity on private property, installing tracking devices, detaining people during a search, power to stop vehicles without a warrant for a search, warrantless seizure of "items in plain view", power to hack into computers remotely, power to detain anyone at scene of search.
WHO WILL GET THEM:
Every agency with enforcement responsibilities, such as: Inland Revenue, Meat Board, local councils, Overseas Investment Office, Accident Compensation Corporation, Environment Risk Management Authority, Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry, Pork Industry Board.
Breaking into our homes, planting spy cameras and spying on us for 3 days without a warrant is a power we should never hand over to the bloody Police!
Police to be given right to spy
Police will be able to use wireless video cameras to spy on crime suspects in their homes for up to three months, as a result of an impending law change and technological advances. Police will normally be required to get a "surveillance device warrant" to monitor people in situations in which they might have a "reasonable expectation of privacy", such as in their homes and offices. But they could conduct surveillance for up to three days without a warrant in "certain urgent or emergency situations". Cecil Averill, chief executive of Napier telco Airnet, says battery-powered "keyhole" cameras that sent encrypted video images back over wireless broadband links could be effectively concealed in homes, but police would need training to install them.
Come on NZ, I know John Key is charming and optimistic and aspirational, but you can see can’t you that these new surveillance powers are powers the state should not be allowed to have over us right? Don’t let National and ACT ram this through in the way they’ve rammed through letting the Police take your DNA to build a DNA data bank on a mere arrest.
Forcing NZers to answer questions robs us of the right to silence, don't be so naive to think that the Police will only aim this power at criminals, don't wash your hands of this issue by pretending that it doesn't impact on you because you don't commit crime. Police power MUST have checks and balances, allowing them to break into your home and bug you without a proper oversight DOES NOT MAKE US SAFER, and why the hell would we want other Government Departments to have such intrusive powers as well?
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