Former Serious Fraud Office head Adam Feeley says it would be
''worrying development for New Zealand'' if businessman Mark
Hotchin funded a smear campaign against him.
Justice Minister Judith Collins resigned on Saturday after
emails written by Whale Oil blogger Cameron Slater said she
was ''gunning for Feeley''.
Weekend newspaper reports suggested the emails showed Mr
Hotchin funded a blogger-led campaign to undermine the SFO,
Mr Feeley and the Financial Markets Authority, at a time when
they were investigating the businessman's collapsed Hanover
In an emailed statement to the Otago Daily Times, Mr Feeley,
now Queenstown Lakes District Council chief executive,
assured investors in collapsed finance companies that he was
not influenced by popular opinion over whether to pursue
''And I think they should be confident all other directors
have operated the same way,'' he said.
''If there is any substance to the allegations, then it is a
very worrying development ...
''It's not that law enforcement would bow to that behaviour,
but it is not an environment that public servants should have
to operate in.''
Mr Feeley, who took a $35,000 salary cut to take his
$305,000-a-year QLDC role, said he left the SFO reluctantly,
having enjoyed the team, but living in Arrowtown was a big
Prime Minister John Key has announced an inquiry will be held
into the smear allegations. Mr Feeley said he would not
speculate or comment until the facts came out.
But he saved some barbs for Mr Slater, who he said ''has been
exposed for the kind of standards he operates under''.
Last night, Mr Slater replied: ''He's a sanctimonious
hypocrite because he was caught nicking a bottle of wine, and
I don't see how he thinks that he can somehow walk away from
Mr Feeley apologised to his then minister, Ms Collins, in
2011, for encouraging SFO staff to drink from a bottle of
wine taken from the offices of collapsed finance company
Bridgecorp at a staff party.
By David Williams.