The independent police watchdog has confirmed it will
investigate the decision by police not to prosecute former Act
MP John Banks over his 2010 mayoral donations return.
Police originally said it would not prosecute Mr Banks over
donations from Kim Dotcom and Sky City in his donations
return from the 2010 mayoral campaign, saying there was
insufficient evidence that he had knowingly submitted a false
That prompted Graham McCready, a retired accountant, to take
Banks to court instead and the Crown took over the
prosecution after Banks was sent to trial.
The High Court in Auckland found Banks guilty of knowingly
filing a false return earlier this month, prompting his
resignation from Parliament. He is due to be sentenced on
A spokesman for IPCA said it had received a number of
requests to investigate but had told complainants it was
keeping a "watching brief" and would review the matter after
the court trial.
"We've done that and decided to undertake an investigation,
but until we've gathered some material we are unable to say
what form the investigation will take or how long it will
One of those complainants was Wellington-based Roger
Brooking, who was told of the IPCA's decision today by email.
Mr McCready has also now filed charging documents against
Prime Minister John Key and the police officer who led the
investigation into Banks, Detective Inspector Mark Benefield,
claiming the Police had conspired to defeat the course of
justice by not prosecuting.
In response, Assistant Commissioner Malcolm Burgess said in a
statement that all police staff involved in the John Banks
investigation acted professionally and impartially in
carrying out the inquiry.
"We have the utmost faith in the integrity of the
investigation and the staff involved will be fully supported
in any proposed court process."
Labour has called for an independent inquiry into police
investigations in politically charged cases and whether there
was political pressure in cases such as Banks' and the
'teapot tapes' complaint taken by Prime Minister John Key in
- By Claire Trevett of the NZ Herald