Police Admit That NZ Spy Agency Illegally Spied On Kim Dotcom, But Aren't Going To Do Anything About It

from the enforce-the-law? dept

You may recall that it came out last year that the New Zealand equivalent of the NSA, the GCSB, illegally spied on Kim Dotcom (oh, and dozens of others), possibly with the help of the NSA, despite not being allowed to spy on those in New Zealand.

An investigation by the police has agreed that the GCSB clearly broke the law... but the police have said that they don't plan to prosecute the spy agency. Because, you know, that might hold them accountable. Now, at least, the GCSB knows that it can abuse the law at will with no punishment.

Instead, it appears that the excuse being used by the police is the same one we've been hearing from NSA defenders: because these abuses weren't intentional, they can be ignored:
Today, Detective Superintendent Peter Read told a media conference that in spite of the GCSB committing one breach under the provisions of the Crimes Act, no criminal "intent" by the GCSB could be established.
I'm not sure that actually makes sense. Yes, when it comes to criminal activity, intent can be important in determining if it's actually criminal, but there's little doubt that the GCSB intentionally spied on Dotcom. It wouldn't have taken very much at all to recognize that Dotcom was a resident of New Zealand who GCSB is forbidden from surveilling. So it seems like the intent was pretty clear.

Filed Under: criminal, gcsb, intent, kim dotcom, mens rea, new zealand, spying, surveillance

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  1. This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
    Anonymous Coward, 30 Aug 2013 @ 1:56pm

    so, where did you get your law degree? what area(s) do you practice in? I don't know criminal law, but without credentials, I have no reason to think that you do either. Without that info, you're just a punk AC

    This is basic first week of Crim Law stuff. Ask any 1L. They'll know more about the law than Mikey.

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