Planning for the illegal spying mission on Kim Dotcom
happened out of earshot of the Government's legal advisers,
the Crown Law Office says.
The office - which participated in every publicly declared
meeting leading up to the raid - has distanced itself from
knowledge of the GCSB's involvement.
Police are investigating the month-long spying on Dotcom
which broke laws designed to protect New Zealand residents
and citizens from intrusion by the Government Communications
The Crown Law Office says it had no idea why GCSB
representatives were at planning meetings before the January
Spokeswoman Jan Fulstow said there was no discussion about
"spying nor any other activity involving GCSB" at meetings at
which its staff were present.
"Crown Law had no knowledge of the reason for GCSB's presence
at the meeting nor of any prospective or potential
involvement of GCSB."
She said Crown Law Office staff made no connection between
the GCSB and any issues which might arise in spying on New
The case also involved people from other countries, who would
have been legitimate targets of the GCSB.
The dates of the pivotal meetings and the attendance at those
meetings is revealed in documents released by the High Court
Careful note-taking by the police officer who led the
operation, Detective Inspector Grant Wormald, shows planning
and progress toward the January 20 raid, in which Dotcom and
three associates were arrested and charged with criminal
Staff from the Crown Law Office, including on one occasion
Deputy Solicitor-General Cameron Mander, were present at each
of the meetings listed in the notes released.
But the notebook also contains blacked out sections, which
led to the uncovering in court of a secret government agency
at the planning meetings.
It was later revealed to be the GCSB when Prime Minister John
Key apologised to Dotcom because it was illegal for the GCSB
to spy on New Zealand residents or citizens.
The court file shows no sign of any other planning meetings,
raising the question as to when and how the operation to spy
on Dotcom was planned.
Dotcom's lawyers have asked the High Court to include the
GCSB as a co-defendant in the case probing the illegal search
and seizure during the raid.
- David Fisher of the New Zealand Herald