Cathy Odgers suggested that Nicky Hager's address be
published. Photo: NZ Herald
Whale Oil blogger Cameron Slater published details of
Dirty Politics author Nicky Hager's address after fellow
blogger Cathy Odgers suggested doing so could result in him
suffering physical attacks.
A 2013 email from Odgers, who blogs under the name Cactus
Kate, discussing the apparent threat to Hager with Slater is
detailed in the book.
Hager had, in 2013, helped research a Fairfax media article
about the use of tax havens.
Odgers, a Hong Kong-based tax consultant, said in the email
the material Hager was dealing with involved tens of
thousands of rich Chinese.
"It would be a disaster if they all knew where he [Hager]
lived. He may even need police protection", she wrote. "Those
Chinese can be very vicious when they lose face ... Chop chop
Slater responded, Hager claims in his book, and the latter's
addresses were subsequently published in a post on Whale Oil
under Slater's name but which Odgers yesterday confirmed she
"Like a lot of the rest of the book that email was just
private chatter and banter between various people on emails
where absolutely nothing else happened as a consequence," she
told the Weekend Herald.
Hager said the discussion was "unbelievable. It's a
combination of angry big talk between friends but it did make
me feel uneasy."
Hager is being challenged about the allegations in his book
by those he has written about, including Prime Minister John
Key who yesterday said "most of the assumptions and
accusations he's made are really dissolving before his eyes".
Hager said he is likely to produce the emails between Slater
and his associates to back up the claims he makes in the
book, but said that could take some days. He had "cleaned out
the house because I might have had the police around here"
following the book's release, he said.
"I'm going to try and get access to them again which I can
probably do and release them in a few days."
Among the book's most serious allegations are that Judith
Collins fed information she gained as a Cabinet minister to
Slater to use in political attacks published on Whale Oil.
That included that she fed the identity of Internal Affairs
official Simon Pleasants, who she believed was responsible
for leaking information to the Labour Party about Finance
Minister Bill English's taxpayer-funded accommodation
allowance in 2009.
Slater went on to identify Mr Pleasants in a series of
disparaging blog posts on his Whale Oil site leading to a
torrent of abuse directed towards him.
Ms Collins yesterday confirmed she had given Mr Pleasants'
name to Slater. "What I was asked for was the name and the
title of the guy and that's publicly available and I've
simply given him that," she told NewstalkZB
Mr Pleasants, who is still employed by the Department of
Internal Affairs, told the Weekend Herald he did not believe
he had been fingered as a suspect over the leaks before
"I did not leak the information. I have never leaked
anything," he said.
- NZ Herald