Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Teina Pora book In Dark Places compelling.

I thought I knew a reasonable amount about the dynamics of the Pora case however some of the detail from Michael Bennett's important to read book 'In Dark Places' were still shocking. Having finished the book I realise that there were always gaps in what the public knew of the fine detail in the Pora case. It was plainly obvious to this reader that Pora's second trial was as unfair as his first, that he was actually framed a second time. I had drawn a wide brush over this because it was clear police set Pora up a second time by having witnesses lie that Pora and the serial rapist Rewa, who undoubtedly to most people was the killer of Susan Burdett, wittingly put the 2 together in a complete and utter fabrication.

There was nothing different in paying witnesses who lied in order to put Pora and Rewa together than for the Officer in Charge of this case, the now retired Rutherford, to have genuinely ever been able to believe Pora did not remember which home he had allegedly taken part in Susan Burdette's murder even when taken to the street and been spoken to right outside the house. Rutherford had to tell Pora which has it was, and reflect that Pora was unable to even describe the late Susan Burdett. As Michael Bennett wrote In Dark Places Rutherford should have pointed out the wrong house, and when, as he surely would have, Pora agreed then the lie would have been in plain sight. But Rutherford didn't want that outcome, the pressure was on him for an arrest. The youth Pora, who had already been cleared on being involved, would do and he was on a string, a promise, a corrupt lie, and illegal inducement that Rutherford knew would never be honoured - immunity from prosecution and a reward that would help Pora establish something for his baby daughter.

I pause here to write that I have been disdainful of publicity surrounding Pora, his daughter and now grandchild. Well perhaps not disdainful but sceptical. Bennett's book put that scepticism aside in a way that now makes me feel uncomfortable about rushing to a judgement. The boy who lost his mother at the age of 4 is in fact a very loving parent something that is hard not to admire. There is possibly a reason for this, his endeavours to make something for his own family having suffered the loss of his own mother and a dad that walked out. His life was bleak, he watched out, as much as a child could do for his baby sister but by then he was in a situation of being passed around the family. One Aunt and her husband were very cruel and violent toward Pora and his sister. It would be the same Aunt who would lie for money at his first trial and her daughter who would do the same at his retrial.

Imagine that. Police framing him with the help of his own family, paid to do the job. One would think if he had ever in fact been the violent killer the police alleged then every provocation was made for him to explode in anger - but he never did, such is the poise and mana of the man.

So back to those video interviews which have always interested me for what went on behind the scenes, before the cameras rolled and after. In Dark Places succinctly points out one particular movement in the 'confession' between the camera being switched off then on again. Entirely out of sequence as to what have been said shortly before the video had been turned off, Pora suddenly admits on screen that he held down Susan Burdett whilst she was being raped. The ex police officer Tim McKinnel, who as the book unfolds, becomes clear as being the central figure fighting for Pora, notes later after watching the video he tracked down under the Official Information Act, that Rutherford does not look Pora in the eye. While the young man is smiling and assuming he has said, what was required of him to get both immunity from prosecution and a reward Rutherford knows he has just taken part in successfully duping Pora into a confession for a crime he didn't commit and didn't have the guts to look him in the eye. He has watched Pora dig his own grave for Rutherford himself to push the young teenager into without a blink of the eye.

Also revealed in the book is how the investigation into Rewa was set aside in order that Pora was convicted. Police did not want it known that there was a hunt on for the serial rapist Rewa whose modus operandi fitted the Burdett rape and murder to a t. On the subject of Rewa, previously known a Mike Lewis, the book describes him in a way that I never knew him. According to Bennett Rewa/Lewis, at some point Sergeant of Arms in the motor cycle club Highway 61 was staunch to the bone, the man to sort out any difficulties and not to be crossed. The Mike Lewis I knew was timid and easy to laughter in the hardest company, but no doubt the ex army biker with the name nick name 'hammer' could be the man in surroundings he was sure of. Someone has told me recently that they read that Rewa was an informer, which was unsurprising to me, also that some of the police were 'turning a blind eye' to the rapes for that reason. I think, therefore, that some of his many rape victims, may take a class action against police. Not in the same, but in a similar, way that Susan Couch took a sole action against the Justice Department for not safely controlling the parolee William Bell who killed three friends of  Susan Couch and almost killed her. That action resulted in an unprecedented, if nominal, settlement with the Justice Department, one that may have been more substantial had there been greater awareness at the time of the depth of the NZ Bill of Rights Act acknowledging that the BORA trumps self-protecting laws enacted to divert Government liability.

Returning to In Dark Places, the book lays out the already quite well known fact of the of the second retired police officer 'Chook' Henwood, by all accounts a remarkable criminal profiler, who while working for police as a civilian after his retirement, spoke out publicly as to his belief that Pora was innocent. In the context of the depth of corruption shown by the police hierarchy in not acknowledging miscarriage of Justice and fighting this remains exceptional, not only because of Henwood showing the honest man he is, but because Police top brass reprimanded him for doing so. The same top brass who would some years later apologise to Pora for stealing 20 years of his life from him because he was a willing victim working under inducement. But they never apologised to Henwood or acknowledged the police association president had also spoken out in an unprecedented
way. Where police top brass failure 30 years later to apologise to Arthur Thomas for his false imprisonment so inwardly protective of themselves felt it necessary to rebuke a retired officer who was driven by all the powerful things which make excellent policing - honesty and fairness being foremost on that list.

What Bennett would most captures in his book was for this reader the very special part of the Pora story. And it is a story more significant, or a least as significant, as the death of Susan Burdett. It is a story of salvation of some sort, therapeutic, if but for a moment you may feel the shoes fit you -  cast down orphan, stripped of family and freedom thrown in the dungeons for a crime he obviously never did from which he grows immeasurably strong and at peace. Of all the things that most tell this story to me is that part, overcoming adversity with the absence of hatred.  Consider the recent television interview with Pora and the man afraid to meet him, Rutherford the ex cop in charge of this case. When Pora was asked what he would say to Rutherford should they ever meet and talk as they had for all those days when Rutherford had convinced Pora to trust him, plying him with petty gifts of food and cigarettes to the child like teenager and promises of 1000s of dollars to confess to a murder he had never committed. Pora replied that he would forgive him.

How much that statement constructs who had the mightiest power in the Pora case, the police, the state, successive governments and prime ministers who all turned a blind eye to his false imprisonment, or the man himself Pora, never killed, never bowed by his anonymous enemy called justice, that of a 1000 faces changing in the mist. It was Pora who won with his dignity, his power to forgive and for the love of his family. I wonder what Rutherford thinks of that.

Monday, August 29, 2016

Callinan's report of Bain compensation undefendable.

Minister of Justice Amy Adams told the public that it was a preferred way, in the public interest to go a bob each way on Callinan's opinion that David Bain was not innocent by some magic formula that didn't hold water. That bob each way bet was to deny compensation but pay  close enough to a million dollars anyway by reason that the compensation claim was tardy. Or in other words it had been delayed for years by the Government itself dithering perhaps on how to avoid acting fairly.

By doing this the Government was using an Executive Power. There is no Law that requires a government to make or deny payments to those applying for compensation. What is clear however is the use of executive power, according to NZ Law, and exposed by David Bain having already used Judicial Review (JR) against the application of Executive Power (EP), is a recognition that petitions  for any request under executive Powers are not constrained in scope - but their treatment must adhere to the NZ Bill of Rights (BORA). Since 30 years ago when then Prime Minister Rob Muldoon pardoned Arthur Thomas and awarded him compensation of around a million dollars one could say it has been a long time between drinks from an era when there was no BORA. A long time since EP was used in a forthright way that was understood to have been applied when the legal system was locked into a Miscarriage of Justice. It could be argued that Muldoon was before his time or that he was misusing a Power - although few New Zealanders did not agree with his actions at the time, or his good sense to order a Royal Commission whose determination supported Muldoon's instinctive measure.

Since then unfortunately use of EP has become clouded in political interest and no doubt was before. Another 2 generations of politicians have failed to separate themselves from politics when considering the Royal Prerogative of Mercy in particular. Scott Watson's application took 4 years to be decided and has waited a further 4 years for his decision to seek a review of the decision. Of course such delays favour a Government, time cures all ills, or at least urgency to correct things which may be wrong in the Judicial process - the very reason why EP and JR exist.

So to recap, Muldoon acted where he could plainly see a Miscarriage of Justice. This act was similar to what any Government since could have done in the Peter Ellis case, or could do now. Amy Adams acted where it was obvious that the Government's report commissioned from Callinan was hardly worth the paper it was written on  - putting it another way of course, saying that she had been told that it would be reviewed. Did she do this out of generosity to the principle and heart of what the use of the RP was designed to do? Or was she merely being pragmatic? For all intents and purposes it doesn't matter because others, including politicians, have seen the broadening of scope of Executive Powers on the one hand, and the more sobering reminder on the other, that their decisions must be advanced carefully in respect of the BORA and are not tempered in scope.

With the inevitable advance in the shelter of the BORA Judicial Review is an opportunity, as the Bain case showed, to have a fair application of the concept of Mercy brought before any Government knowing that the Courts are not excluded from the process of that application, or from what the Government considers and how, any matter in fact that might constitute relief to a NZ resident. These are some of the true concepts of what mercy is, a recognition that a system may stall or fail at some point where fairness appears to be gone. It wasn't fair for David Bain to have his application delayed for years because of the conduct of a previous Cabinet, many of whom remain in the current cabinet. It is still not fair that his application was denied the use of forensic science at the cutting edge, however that remains alive for another day and is in fact in print in international, peer reviewed papers being used in Courts, forensic science labs and Universities throughout the world. Time will submerge the resistance to science that was indeed the Callinan report. He may yet be seen as a fool who wore no clothes in the face of reality. He did however, even in his fumblings, preserve some truths that had previously been hidden. He acknowledged that suicide was possible (though it could hardly be denied), he acknowledged that Robin Bain died with blood on his palms - something that can't have got there from his own wounds, he vicariously acknowledged what Martin Van Beynan lied about for over 20 years -  saying that there were no scratches found on David's chest after Van Beynan had claimed there were and that they had arrived there when David had allegedly fought with his younger brother Stephen. History will preserve that the man who died with blood on his palms got that blood there in the commission of murdering his family. A preservation supported by science that Callinan, wrongly, foolishly, perhaps even deliberately excluded to deny David Bain Justice - acts and omissions which were all part of this Government's unprecedented decision to pay an unsuccessful suitor for fairness cash to go away. They were over defending a crock of crap.

Sunday, August 14, 2016

A chance to make a point in the Bain case and other injustices.


Surprised by the link above sent to me today by Roger Brooking who has started a Give a Little campaign to raise a million dollars for David Bain. But the Bain case has been full of surprises in all the years I have followed it since 2008. I needed to think about aspects of the idea of a campaign to do what any Government should do when a man is released after 13 years of false imprisonment, and after a retrial found not guilty. It shouldn't by any means, convolute itself to avoid that the State had let a single man down for a decade but wished to accept no responsibility.

This game of not guilty but not innocent on the balance of probabilities was thought up by mad men and is exercised by fools to this day. It should be rejected. Rejected on behalf of men such as Arthur Thomas, his late wife Vivian, Allan Hall and his family, along with others such as Peter Ellis who still wait to be treated justly by our Criminal Justice system. In Bain it was rejected by science but the Government chose to ignore that. People are convicted or acquitted on science and have been for at least a century, leading to the conclusion abroad that David Bain while innocent was denied the chance to prove his innocence with science. As earlier posts show his father was over 30 times more likely to have suicided than been murdered, the probability of his suicide was calculated at 97.3% but the Government agreed to let the appointed adjudicator of compensation, retired Judge Callinan to ignore that along with a heap of other stuff. He even got to tell porkies without rebuff.

So this idea of Roger Brooking is a chance to remember that New Zealanders convicted of crimes of which they may be innocent can no longer go to the esteemed, Centuries old Privy Council for an international perspective in the home of our NZ law. It's a chance to remember that Justice in New Zealand is not a fair fight because an accused person is denied equal footing to the Crown if they plead not guilty. Bain's team was small, as was that of Peter Ellis's, Allan Hall seems to virtually have had only his mother, and a brother from memory - even pooled together they were afforded little chance to win.

You may think David is guilty and that is your opinion of which you are completely entitled. But you may not feel the same about one of the others listed, or those imprisoned still in controversial cases such as Watson and Lundy. It doesn't matter, but if you have a view on any of these cases, or others - then see the opportunity to send a message.

A message to people like Pat Booth, Chris Birt right back 40 years and many others since that you heard them, recognised their fight for what they had come to believed in. If you have ever anguished over why men abandoned careers in kindergartens because of the Ellis case then think about this opportunity. Think also of those to come, even someone you might know who could get swallowed by the Justice system for a crime they didn't commit. Think of yourself, how even if desolate and laid waste someone might remember you and take a stand for your rights after they had been trampled on with methodical disregard. Think of that, also of when you helped another or they helped you.

It's worth a dollar or 2, just to remember and remind yourself that Justice should stand for us all.


Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Why is the Government afraid of Science?

Onlooker, quite naturally asked about the following link on the previous post. So for his or her benefit it is embedded below.

I have a personal interest in this not only because of the Bain case, but also despite it, because of what Bain demonstrates, particularly in the Callinan report, is the rehashing of what people have said in an ongoing analysis that has no definite or logical end. It's no accident that I have primarily only been interested in Robin's death, there is no other story in this case in terms of understanding  what happened. To understand what was going on in Bain I needed to understand what may or may not have happened in the lounge, often I found myself in online conversations about what somebody said months or years after the 5 deaths. Distracting as it was it drew me closer to trying to understand if Robin had suicided, Sure, I asked questions about both men's hands, injuries they might have had but such questions were information about what may have happened in the lounge. Finding out that Robin's blood/dna was in the barrell send me off on a search as to how it could have possibly got there, it goes on from that point of course but I am not intending this to be a rehash of things I have written about before.

This is about friends science and logic. Of course they are not friends at all but rather tools of measurement and assessment, probability. They will destroy a misconception or create a discovery. In Callinan's report they were not even allowed in the door, it's hard not to assume that was because science gives a probability of Robin's suicide at 97.3%, over 30 times more likely to have died from suicide than murder. The public has been sold short. There are 3 other cases at least where Bayesian testing should apply in the category of being able to resolve deep inconsistencies that have not been resolved. One is the Watson case, another is Lundy. I think it would be enlightening to know the probability of Watson going aboard a boat he was rafted to in order to socialise with those on board while he had dead bodies, or at least restrained victims, aboard his yacht. Or for him to wave out to passing vessels while he either had bodies on board or his yacht yet to cleaned of horrific crimes. The likelihood of a man who built his own yacht, and knew how well it was known, could think that painting it a different colour, but still having the same skipper., was unrecognisable in a small harbour. Not forgetting 2 highly visible hairs to be missing one minute and found virtually the next, just when needed. More of course,  including the probability of those things happening both in isolation but also the continuity that the Crown case required to get a conviction.

Then there is Lundy with its mad car trips, slow or fast, depending on which ever story the police really meant in the case that has changed fundamentally but never from the fact that so called brain matter was dark with decay and unrecognisable to  New Zealand scientists who refused to make tests upon the tiny spots. I'd like to know the probability of Glen Weggery or any other of those who entered the house after the murder of Lundy's wife and daughter not having blood on them. Therefore the likelihood that Lundy could have a spot on his shirt said to be spinal matter which left the body of his wife, when her head was cleaved open with an axe or some similar weapon, but not bring any neurons or blood with it, unlike samples found in the house where both blood and neurons were found intact like skin to a corpse. Examples of central nervous tissue separating from spinal fluids having neutrons missing and no signals of blood inputted to a bayesian testing and given a probability level. It goes on every step of the way as to how  alleged spinal cord matter from Christine, that was unrecognisable and untestable not half a day after her death, had expired rapidly in the normal expected fashion having left the body but that a small spot naked to the eye, and therefore more rapidly probable to deteriorate somehow survived outside the control of the exhibits officer.

There is also the Tamihere case which would benefit from a Bayes testing but which for the moment continues to be litigated and hopefully the NZ Court of Appeal will be finally tasked with accepting that perjury strikes at the heart of a conviction rendering it worthless in Law.

Science is not the enemy of the truth. Binnie's report embraced science, Callinan ignored it and the Government made no objection despite the following being available to them and their own scientific advisors, not a single reference to independent scientists for comment on an internationally peer reviewed paper that is ground breaking in its clarity and logic was sought, not one. Congratulations to those authors and those that peer reviewed the work. Where men dally science moves forward, in a new age of science and development NZ has chosen antiquated pre-Magna Carta Law abandoned nearly 1000 years ago and also excluded a 1000 of years science since. Just? Never.

As the previous posts quotes, and indeed includes the paragraph on the conclusion of the probability of Robin's death as suicide in the region of high 95% plus, the reference to Robin specific test is found in the case note documents.

Homicide or Suicide? Gunshot Wound Interpretation: A Bayesian Approach

Monday, August 8, 2016

David Bain robbed of compensation?

Apart from those that had invested in David's alleged guilt to a point they were blinded, there was likely to have been a feeling for the others that David Bain's compensation claim would settle the case once and for all. David being offered nearly a million dollars to essentially go away was an unsatisfactory conclusion as time is already showing. The public were entitled to a final accurate as possible narrative, one that went step by step through either his guilt or innocence. They got neither. While some ex Dunedin police may have felt satisfied, it would have simply been because of the false hope of relief. The Callinan report made public for less than a week has already been exposed as being stitched together for a purpose. Few people will ever know what drove Callinan to ignore proven evidence but accept alleged evidence discredited years ago. He did not succeed in writing a narrative that connected accepted, and proven scientific facts, together  even in the most basic ways.

A mystery, or a confusing event can be solved and put into some order. The human characteristic of instinct is displayed in the Bain case in a way that will eventually be seen as an example of how to apply critical thought to an event in order to resolve its detail. In Bain there have been 2 distinct lines of thought. Those following 2 lines have generally been widespread across the population, some that might have been expected to have been on one line have surprisingly emerged on the other, however to their credit a majority of people interested in the Bain case have been open minded. My observations have been that one group starts from outside the centre and tries to work to the middle, the other do the opposite. For those that have started in the middle to succeed they have needed to be disciplined and not easily distracted. For those that have started from outside the middle they have been distracted immediately, if they have made a decision before been satisfied about the middle they have failed to understand the case, if they have made a decision but been open minded enough not to be frightened that they might be wrong they very well may still have succeeded in reaching the middle. On their way they may well have seen those going in the other direction - center to periphery, and wondered why they were not taken so much by that which absorbed those coming from the other limits. Not realising of course that those have completed their job in the middle of the case were looking only for supporting or non supporting issues in order to reconcile one way or the other what they had already determined. In other words looked for support for their finding or dealt with converse events in a way that made sense of them and judged their importance to see if it could indeed confirm their opinion or negate it - certainly not closed minded.

Where is the middle and where is the outer line? Clearly the middle is what happened around where Robin's body was found. The outer is in conversations, events that might have many different meanings far away from that lounge scene. If every person who played a role in this tragedy is set aside for the moment, apart from the dead body of Robin there is only one true narrator - science, to observe all the random details and paint a picture of whether Robin suicided or not. After that, all the peripheral information becomes relatively meaningless. Along this trail there have been a few scientists, one in particular who destroyed his own credibility by maintaining he did like Joe Karam's manner when meeting him at a book launch in Dunedin. Thus demonstrating a very un science like attitude which permeated through his views of the case, his centre was his dislike for Joe Karam - in reality the very outer edges of what happened in the lounge. There have been at least 2 others, both becoming friends along the way. The first Rowena Cave who took only a scientific interest, made comments related to that and stuck with logic in an open and friendly way. The second was David Giles, whom I'm still unsure, and I must ask him about it one day, apparently began with the premise that Robin was not guilty.

Rowena is English, David a Kiwi. Others who may have closely followed this case could be aware that Rowena, neutral as she was became a target of the Justice for Robin Bain group, as would eventually David along with unfortunately, the Jury from the retrial. By necessity this entire group, although I can't say for sure that included all the Jury, began with Robin's body and worked from there looking for a resolution of the question was it David or was it Robin. After the retrial David found the gsr marks on photos of Robin's thumbs, something confirmed by Dempster the pathologist as not being present at autopsy but still discarded by the myopic Callinan who rejected all scientific data provided by the defence. Consider that a retired Judge rejects science in favour of what people said before or after the tragedy, some in fact years later as a sure sign of deceit. He was into the gossip not the science. From the way it looks he also rejected the remarkable work of Rowena Cave, Vincent Diamo and D Kimberly Molina who applied Bayesian testing specifically to the evidence found where Robin laid dead and found using that mathematical reasoning that the probability of Robin having committed suicide was 97.3%. Their paper was peer reviewed, published and his now being used throughout the world. A paper of considerable undertaking peer reviewed internationally havng withstood the critical scrutiny of sharp trained minds.

I don't think there can be a clearer example to support starting in the middle rather than working backwards through conversations of what people said who possibly were never in that lounge. So is displayed Callinan's error. However, there is more of interest here, much more that adds to the argument that David was in fact robbed of at the very least an apology. Cabinet were right up to their necks with this decision that further evidences another miscarriage of Justice perpetuated on David Bain by the State. When I read Ian Binnie's report that found David Bain innocent on the balance of probabilities, and which was swiftly thrown out after being subjected to a secret review criticising Binnie for not using a Bayesian approach I was mystified. From what I read Binnie had clearly demonstrated a Bayesian approach it was evident throughout.

Listening last night to an hour long interview with Joe Karam I heard that Ian Binnie, like the defence had never been told that the Binnie report was under review and certainly not the reason. Binnie has since said he had been informed as he should have been it would have simple for him to explain to the reviewer how he, Binnie, had used Bayes, and demonstrate how that was shown throughout the report. Fast forward to the Callinan report where it is revealed immediately that he doesn't use a Bayesian approach, in fact in a supplementary report confirms that. So what did happen in the Binnie report, a Bayes approach, was rejected on the pretence that it had not been used. Callinan on the other hand doesn't use Bayes and his report is acceptable. That he also rejects scientific data is accepted without comment by the Government. His report was written using gossip as its foundation, evidence already discarded because of being found wanting was resurrected by Callinan. He was absolutely silent on Robin's alleged misuse of a firearm to threaten a neighbour in Wellington, Margaret's letter of concern that her husband would shoot the lot of them (the family.)

Amy Adams realised that the Callinan report wouldn't survive a judicial review, but why didn't the cabinet at least turn to Dr Peter Gluckman to review the scientific evidence that Callinan refused to consider. Peter Gluckman is foremostly a scientist whose skill is often employed by the Government. He is well respected as a problem solver, he could have been invited in to look at the scientific evidence that was part of the application, met with the scientists and attempt to establish some consensus to take to Cabinet. Remembering that not only did Callinan reject considering scientific data he also attacked perhaps NZ's leading forensic psychiatrist who dealt with David Bain, Dr Brinded.

What is left? The truth is, David is innocent and part of this Government have rejected that truth with its scientific basis. David has been compensated without the word compensation being used. The Appeal Court of the 1990s remains vilified for it's efforts in the Bain, Watson, Tamihere and Pora cases and that may only be the beginning.

Follows the link to the Karam interview
The Murder/Suicide Paper details, and the paras relating to Robin Bain's death.



Here is the paper you are looking for.If you read the case examples section  you will see the following….

"There was a single shot (more likely suicide), at contact range (also more likely suicide), to the left side of the head (more likely homicide). Because the head loca- tion data are not independent, a Bayesian network was developed to produce net probabilities for this combination of factors being suicide or homicide. As Figure 2 shows, each factor is repre- sented by a node. The data in this study provided the probability for each factor. The resulting probabilities of suicide (P = 0.0371) and homicide (P = 0.0010) show that suicide is more probable than homicide, giving an LR = 36.4. That is, a case with this combination of features is more than 36 times more likely to be a result of suicide than of homicide. “

This  example used to illustrate the technique  is Robin Bain.

"LR=36.4  , this means that it is 36.4 x more likely to be suicide than homicide. In percentage terms this means 97.3% probability of suicide and only a 2.7% probability of homicide.You can see why Callinan needed to avoid  consideration of the Bayes evidence."

You have to give credit to the ministry of " justice” for their well orchestrated PR campaign.Their idea to get a fiction writer was just brilliant.


Friday, August 5, 2016

Who can be happy with the Bain decision?

David Bain hopefully will be happy with the Callinan decision even if it in parts reads like a comic book for the befuddled.  David has now been found not guilty by a Jury, innocent by one reviewer with a 2nd reviewer sitting on the fence with barb wire stinging his bum in a report that has resulted in a long overdue payout to David Bain.

Each person reading Callinan's report, and his comment in para 64, that he wasn't prepared to say either murder or suicide will find different matters of interest to them.  The overall outcome from my point of view is that David Bain gets paid compensation and more than likely than not
receives other concessions that reconcile with the consistence of him being found, both not guilty by a Jury, and innocent of 5 charges of killing in a review that made the then Minister of Justice puke. Metaphorically, David Bain was asked to pick hot coals from which the outcome would be proof of his guilt or innocence, despite those practices from the middle ages - he showed no scars This is a victory for sanity after a bewildering case that can be classed by 3 things: 'not guilty, innocent, I don't know.'

Even the apparently mortally wounded people who insisted David would not get a cent, still refer to the Binnie report. The report prevails over time and the shabby treatment afforded it from our Government. It will become part of NZ history, this payment if finalised will prevail as one of the largest compo payments in NZ history despite whatever name given to the payment. It will enter folklore that the Crown negotiated their way out of misusing the Binnie report, then protected itself with a settlement offer to avoid having the Callinan report dismembered in the Courts. Pragmatically why would they not want to bail out - should have done so years ago and saved around 50 million that could have been more usefully spent elsewhere rather than vainly trying to bury a Miscarriage of Justice.

The Callinan report is in itself a travesty. Callinan was not empowered to place himself in the role of a Jury. The Privy Council have ruled that it is not the role of Judges or Courts of Appeal to assume the role of a Jury. This report has weakened confidence in the Crown absolutely standing by Juries, but the Jury system will prevail despite Callinan giving himself god like powers to assume what a functioning Jury should have decided. Callinan was getting paid to deliver something that was already tagged as having to satisfy the Government, as Binnie found out - but the Jury were never paid, they took their life experiences into the Jury room and decided in a record time that David was not guilty, 5 times over.

Callinan escaped into the mumbo jumbo of what people said and how people acted. He offered a new and scientifically impossible scenario for Robin's suicide. That it was fluid or moving, no other person has ever suggested this, predictably Callinan himself was never able to transcribe that theory to the known facts of Robin's death - because the theory, much like other matters in his report didn't need to stack up and be defendable in Court because it was to be buried in a financial settlement. He ignored that Cox for the Crown conceded the computer turn on time to have happened when David was seen outside the house. He ignored fresh blood on Robin's trousers and a blood smear found on his hands. No man committing suicide gets blood smeared on his hands in the process, removes his pants away from where he was killed and returns like the walking dead in a zombie show. In fact the Crown's case has been a zombie show for years.

Where Callinan searched into David's past, assuming the role of a Psychiatrist, just as he had assumed the role of  the Jury, he elevated himself above a specialist Psychiatrist who remains a member of the NZ Parole Board, a man who actually met and treated David Bain - something Callinan with his all seeing eye apparently felt as unnecessary. It was also unnecessary for Callinan to investigate an earlier event where Robin was said to have threatened neighbours with a rifle in Wellington, he did not investigate if Robin had ever had a firearms licence and if he did why it was taken off him. Apart from writing disdainfully of Margaret and Laniet Bain in particular he never gave recognition to a letter written by Margaret to an old friend that she was concerned that Robin 'would get a gun and shoot the lot of them (family.) It's doubtful that she wrote that without some reason for doing so. He also treated with disdain evidence that was given under oath of Laniet saying that she her father had an improper sexual relationship with her as a child, noting that the evidence pre-dated the murders by years. But of course he was an expert on all such matters and quite capable of knowing 'best' what he could ignore as he tried to rebuild the Crown case.

Callinan even decided that Weir didn't plant the lens, something Weir was unable to prove in Court himself, and was wholly silent on the fact that Weir hid evidence from the first Jury. Anyone with an open mind could have seen that Weir hid things and found things in a particular order to 'help' a case. Callinan didn't think it was necessary to record that Weir under oath said that he felt hounded before leaving police because other police mocked him as a planter of evidence, poor diddums. Anyone that is except Callinan busy trying to paint over the cracks with long winded observations about what people said concerning matters far beyond the room where Robin shot himself and little of anything observant to the evidence found there. He rehashed evidence to suit his case, something he would never be able to have done in Court under cross examination of the evidence rather than his weak interpretation of what was said. Ultimately however, he did not move the rock of David's innocence, something that the Crown acknowledged with their settlement.

Friday, July 15, 2016

Mount Erebus and Lundy - what do they have in common.

First of all a post from International Skeptics Forum used with permission of the author. It relates to the Erebus Tragedy and the aftermath of a coverup which was also tragic.

Originally Posted by Samson View Post
Well hang on, Mahon attacked Morrie Davies, who blamed the pilot. Pilots say Captain Collins was the prime culprit, sadly.

Prime culprit perhaps but not entirely responsible. Partly to blame were

1. The person(s) who changed the INS track without telling the pilots

2. The person(s) who inadvertently programmed even the new track incorrectly

The result of these two errors put ZK-NZP on a track 43 km east of where they should have been, so rather than flying straight along the approved track to McMurdo Sound, they were flying straight at Mount Erebus.

3. Whoever scheduled two pilots, neither of whom had ever been to Antarctica, to fly together on their first ever flight there. The Air National Guard (and before them US Navy Squadron VXE-6 would NEVER have sent an aircraft to Antarctica with a pilot on board who had not flown there at least three times before. Flying near the poles is like no other type of flying you are ever likely to do.

Furthermore, unlike the ANG and the USN, ANZ did not give their pilots any training whatsoever regarding flying in sector whiteout conditions. This is just madness. The aircrew had no idea what to expect, and so when they were flying along straight at the base of Mr Erebus looking at the white of its snowy slopes rising away, what they thought they saw out of the forward cockpit windows was exactly what they were told they would see; what they expected to see, the white expanse of the Ross Ice Shelf stretching away in front of them. When they arrived at Lake Lewis, right in front of Erebus, they though it was McMurdo Sound. A few minutes later, it was all over.

As is usual with any air accident, it is the result of a series of errors, mistakes or oversights, each of which might not have had any consequences, but when they occurred together in the order they did on that day, it resulted in a "perfect storm" of cock-ups and the loss of the aircraft with over 250 lives.

► If the non-notified changes to the track are not made, the accident never happens.

► If the programming error is not made, the accident never happens.

► If Collins and Cassin are properly trained in flying during sector whiteout conditions, or of they have a pilot on board who has experience there, they might have understood what they were looking at, and the accident might never have happened.

► If Collins had not descended to 2,000 feet without authorisation, the accident might have been avoided. however, Flight 901 WAS authorised to 6,000 feet, and Mt Erebus is over 12,000 feet, so they still might have crashed anyway.

Justice Mahon coined his famous phrase "an orchestrated littany of lies" because executives in Air New Zealand tried to cover up their mistakes, particularly the first two. The bastards lied through their teeth to the Royal Commission of Inquiry
► OCCAMS Razor - 9/11 was a terrorist attack by Islamic extremists organised by Osama Bin Laden; the Apollo astronauts walked on the Moon; JFK was assassinated by a single gunmen, Lee Harvey Oswald, acting alone.
► "Conspiracism is a shortcut to the illusion of erudition." - JayUtah
► Heisenberg's Law - The weirdness of the Universe is inversely proportional to the scale at which you observe it, or not.

Last edited by smartcooky; Yesterday at 06:50 PM. Reason: fix typo

On first reading I thought the post by a New Zealand man who calls himself smartcooky was simple and enlightening essay on how to understand fully the complex Erebus disaster. The piece was taken from a Lundy thread which had wandered from topic. I liked the straight forward detail and the brevity of words. After 1 or 2 more reads, I saw, that whether smarkcooky had intended to do so or not (I suspect he did), that the piece had struck  a note which  could contribute a lot of thought to a revelation that the Erebus disaster, although in an entirely different context, was very similar to the Lundy case and others - false moves followed by deceit.

It's easy to associate the non notified changes to the flight path, and the mistake of entering a programming error into the computer flight path as the complete mishandling of the critical shirt evidence in the Lundy case. The programming glitch for the flight path is mirrored by the Lundy shirt being sent for sampling in the wrong laboratory, one not specific to, or approved, for forensic testing. Earlier in New Zealandf Dr Teoh had already said that the Lundy shirt was not suitable for testing, that the spots were too down graded to be relied upon. Regardless the shirt was sent off to an American Lab for testing with an instruction that it had brain matter present on the breast and sleeve - something no accredited New Zealand scientist could confirm. That was an instruction that came from the officer in charge of the case, Grantham. Ultimately it would be similar to a programing error, one that would send the whole Lundy case off course, deliberately. Grantham had already been turned down in NZ and overseas by approved forensic facilities, so he took a different flight path, programmed the computer with an instruction that would give a desired result for Grantham and a miscarriage of Justice for Lundy.

So the changing of the flight path and not telling the pilots in Erebus, was a blueprint of sorts for a change to Forensic Science in the NZ Lundy case where the Courts were unable to conceive, that Lundy, had evidence against him that had been improperly handled in NZ and illegally tested in the States according to FDA protocols.. Telling the unqualified American Dr Miller, to look for brain matter because Christine and Amber Lundy had been attacked to the head with such ferocity that brain matter had splattered from their skulls indicated to Miller exactly what to look for, or interpreted another way what to find. He did so, using a novel and unapproved in his own country method which still doesn't have approval 15 years later. Why, because no approved authority in the USA, as in New Zealand considered that the results of the testing could be relied upon. Ironically, a test over a decade later found that a single shirt spot was to hold faint traces of animal central nervous tissue devoid of blood and neurons - in other words modified in someway, most likely simply by the cooking or eating of household food.

Miller had no objections to testing a sample that had incubated in a plastic bag for 54 days and which had already been declared unsuitable for testing by Dr Teoh back in Grantham's home town, Palmerston North.  Miller had no concerns that the samples had never been controlled in a forensic pathway to his laboratory, didn't care. His unaccredited and unrecognised forensic skills were omniscient, he could look into the past and see that nothing had gone wrong with the samples he was testing, they hadn't been planted there, they were unaffected by deterioration although allegedly similar samples within the house were deteriorated within hours as is the norm for central nervous system material out of the body, he knew all of this. He knew his laboratory and testing wouldn't produce contaminated results, and he didn't need any certification to tell him so. If he was getting paid everything was fine. He had no objections to being told what to look for, it never occurred to him apparently that was exactly opposite to approved forensic testing in the States and the United Kingdom, or that verification testing was not undertaken by himself to prove himself right. He set the co-ordinates the way he wanted to and the New Zealand Courts accepted it like meek lambs. They had nothing to lose either. Afterall, it wasn't their rights under NZ Bill of Rights Act for citizens not to be experimented  upon with novel science or procedures, indeed it was not them sent off to fly into Erebus in the perfect whiteness of unexpected death.

So to move to point 3 in smartcooky's list of 3 things that went wrong in the Erebus disaster where he points out:

3. Whoever scheduled two pilots, neither of whom had ever been to Antarctica, to fly together on their first ever flight there. The Air National Guard (and before them US Navy Squadron VXE-6 would NEVER have sent an aircraft to Antarctica with a pilot on board who had not flown there at least three times before. Flying near the poles is like no other type of flying you are ever likely to do.

Furthermore, unlike the ANG and the USN, ANZ did not give their pilots any training whatsoever regarding flying in sector whiteout conditions. This is just madness. The aircrew had no idea what to expect, and so when they were flying along straight at the base of Mr Erebus looking at the white of its snowy slopes rising away, what they thought they saw out of the forward cockpit windows was exactly what they were told they would see; what they expected to see, the white expanse of the Ross Ice Shelf stretching away in front of them. When they arrived at Lake Lewis, right in front of Erebus, they though it was McMurdo Sound. A few minutes later, it was all over.

Of course Grantham and Miller had never 'flown' in the world of Forensics, they had no licence to do so. Sadly the Erebus pilots had never flown to Antarctica but they were still sent there. All the protocols of ANG and USN that smartcooky refers, regarding training and participating in flights to Antarctica, were never afforded the NZ pilots - they had no experience in sector whiteout conditions, it was madness according to smartcooky and who could disagree. In context to Lundy, did Miller or Grantham have experience to overlook the advice of the Pathologist Dr Teoh in NZ, overlook textbook handling of quickly deteriorating brain matter by chucking it in a plastic bag and leaving it to incubate more than it already had before entering the bag. It wasn't their lives on the line. Just as it wasn't the Air New Zealand person who changed the flight co-ordinates but didn't tell the pilots, nor the person that inputted the wrong flight path that was inconsistent with the change that sent nearly 300 people to an unforgiving risk. Neither Grantham nor Miller had put themselves at risk when they launched the flight of unapproved testing to exclusively find what they had already decided was on Lundy's shirt.

To use more from smartcooky on Erebus. He says if the non notified changes to the flight plan were never made no accident happens, In Lundy, if the refusal by verified for forensic purposes laboratories is not manipulated by visiting a not verified facility no accident happens, no contamination takes place, imminent scientists do not say that the testing is unreliable, as are the results. Further, if Grantham is trained in safely handling fragile forensic samples, he does not put them in a plastic bag and lock them in a safe away from the exhibits officer for surrender to a authorised laboratory as quickly as possible knowing the short time available to preserve them for testing, would know by what Teoh said that the safe time had already passed. If Miller is trained and certified as a forensic tester, he does what other such personnel from approved facilities do - refuses to test because the passage to him has not been forensically safe or approved. He also contacts the FDA to report the matter because he recognises the danger of the treatment of the samples being tested anywhere in the USA, sends Grantham back to NZ to try and hold the charge against Lundy together with real evidence, or simply do the right thing and withdraw charges against him as advised by Dr Teoh.

In Erebus there was a cover up, there were also mistakes. In Lundy there was the coverup as to what Dr Teoh had said. In the Courts there was the fatal mistake to accept evidence that was not, and is not, acceptable in an American Court. Remember the Americans trained their Antarctica pilots as smartcooky points out. They also train their forensic scientists and won't let them test or give evidence on forensic matters unless they are approved and use an approved test facility. Are NZ Courts somehow wiser than the American Courts of FDA? As wise as Air New Zealand was to send untrained pilots in an hazardous area where they had never flown before and with passengers aboard?

The year Erebus crashed was the year Arthur Thomas was released from prison, pardoned for crimes he didn't commit. But it was also the time when another cover up began by Air New Zealand, one tragedy replacing another with the Crown at the helm. It would follow that a foremost mind of New Zealand history would pick apart the  Erebus tragedy and immortalise the words 'an orchestrated litany of lies.'  The release of Thomas and those famous words of the late Peter Mahon were not, as history has unfortunately shown, appreciated for their full value because both innocent men and women still go to New Zealand prisons accompanied by a litany of lies and courts can still act without the Judicial insight that Peter Mahon contributed against the tide of turning away from or covering over false flight paths.