Tag Archives: Bribes

Auckland corruption charges proved —ring any bells? #South

“The extensive provision of benefits to staff at all levels of their teams resulted in a culture where corruption flourished and was normalised, with no questions asked. There was very little chance of disgruntled or principled employees speaking out as everyone was being ‘looked after’ or was compromised.” –Brian Dickey, SFO prosecutor

### NZ Herald Fri, 9 Dec 2016 at 10:05 a.m.
Council manager guilty of majority of corruption charges
By Matt Nippert
A roading contractor and a council manager have been found guilty of corruption in a case exposing what the prosecution called a “culture of corruption” among Auckland council staff administering tens of millions of dollars in roading contracts. Justice Sally Fitzgerald delivered her verdict this in the High Court at Auckland this morning in the long-running trial of former Auckland Transport senior manager Murray Noone and roading engineer contractor Stephen Borlase. Noone was found guilty on six charges of receiving $1.2 million in bribes from Borlase. Borlase, in turn, was found guilty on eight charges of offering bribes to Noone and other council staff. Borlase was found not guilty on four charges of dishonestly using a document to allegedly inflate invoices to council. The corrupt relationship ran from 2006 until 2012, from Noone worked at Rodney District Council, continuing when he joined Auckland Transport following the supercity merger.
Read more

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

This post is offered in the public interest.

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ODT: Vandervis v Cull

Dave Cull merge v1

‘Mr Cull maintained he was correct to call Cr Vandervis a liar during a furious bust-up at a council meeting last December, telling the Otago Daily Times yesterday “a lie is a lie”.’

### ODT Online Sat, 7 May 2016
Threat to ‘double damages’
By Vaughan Elder
Councillor Lee Vandervis has threatened to “double the damages” from defamation action after Dunedin Mayor Dave Cull stood by calling him a liar. […] Cr Vandervis launched the defamation action this week, saying Mr Cull calling him a liar during a discussion on a new council procurement policy was incorrect and defamed him. A letter sent to Mr Cull by Cr Vandervis’ legal counsel, Alistair Paterson, said he would be willing to forgo defamation action if Mr Cull paid his legal costs and made a public apology in a full council meeting filmed by Dunedin Television and in the presence of Allied Press [Otago Daily Times] reporters.
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Channel 39 Published on Dec [14]*, 2015
Councillor asked to leave meeting
Councillor Lee Vandervis was instructed by Mayor Dave Cull to leave a Dunedin City Council meeting today. The request came after Cr Vandervis alleged that tender contracts could not be secured unless a relationship was developed with staff. The Mayor rejected his claims, saying he had no proof. Cr Vandervis then proceeded to continue discussing the matter and was asked to leave.
Note: Incorrect date of meeting given at YouTube entry.

Dunedin City Council Published on Dec 15, 2015
[full meeting video – relevant segment near end from 2:07:19]

Unconfirmed Minutes of Meeting (14.12.15)
No reason given for minutes as yet unconfirmed by Council.

Related Posts and Commments:
14.3.16 Cr Vandervis co-operates with investigators #mediaslant
20.12.15 More emails —DCC aftermath of full council meeting 14.12.15
19.12.15 Member of the public lays Conduct complaint against Mayor Cull
15.12.15 Santa Cull’s idea of standing orders 14.12.15 #xmasface

█ For more, enter the term *vandervis* in the search box at right.

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

Election Year —this post is offered in the public interest.

*Image: dunedintv.co.nz – archivemash by whatifdunedin

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More emails —DCC aftermath of full council meeting 14.12.15

Updated post
Mon, 21 Dec 2015 at 1:00 p.m.

“I have told you personally of a relationship with a DCC manager where I had to pay a 10% backhander to get a contract.” –Cr Vandervis to Mayor Cull

### ODT Online Mon, 21 Dec 2015
Contract fraud call at DCC
By Chris Morris
Dunedin city councillor Lee Vandervis’ actions will form part of a fresh fraud investigation inside the Dunedin City Council, after he claimed to have paid a backhander to secure a council contract. Council staff have confirmed his actions would be examined by the council’s internal auditors, Crowe Horwath, under the council’s new fraud prevention policy.
Read more

Otago Daily Times Published on Dec 14, 2015
Cr Lee Vandervis instructed by Mayor Dave Cull to leave meeting.
[Vandervis statement around 1.25 mark]

Received from Lee Vandervis
Sat, 19 Dec 2015 at 10:56 p.m.

Re: Town Hall Redevelopment Project and Citifleet fraud allegations

—— Forwarded Message
From: Sandy Graham
Date: Fri, 18 Dec 2015 02:37:27 +0000
To: “Council 2013-2016 (Elected Members)”
Cc: “Executive Leadership Team (ELT)”
Subject: Additional LGOIMA emails re Various matters related to allegations from Monday meeting

Councillors

Please find attached an additional PDF that was included in the information provided to the ODT but got missed in my earlier email to you.

Apologies.

Sandy

From: prncc209@dcc.govt.nz
Sent: Friday, 18 December 2015 12:48 p.m.
To: Sandy Graham
Subject: Message from KM_C454e

(1) Attachment:
SC454E0591715121812470 [683890] (PDF, 169 KB)
Lee Vandervis to Bidrose 28.6.15 [thread]

Related Post and Comments:
19.12.15 DCC aftermath of full council meeting 14.12.15 (emails released)

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

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DCC aftermath of full council meeting 14.12.15 (emails released)

Extraordinary times at Dunedin City Council in which no-one looks good. With what political mileage generated at mayoral level; and what questions of the chief executive, and ODT’s role and or complicity, in this sudden council release of information to the public realm.

Read the email threads attached to Sandy Graham’s email to Cr Vandervis.

More than ever, these exchanges show strong need for an independent Procurement manager position at Dunedin City Council with oversight of all managers of departments and divisions, as Cr Vandervis has been recommending for some time.

Unsurprisingly, belatedly, an investigation into alleged fraud at City Property should commence, along the lines of what happened for Citifleet —this time, with full accountability to the ratepayers and residents of Dunedin.

Received from Lee Vandervis
Sat, 19 Dec 2015 at 11:12 a.m.

—— Forwarded Message
From: Lee Vandervis
Date: Sat, 19 Dec 2015 10:02:42 +1300
To: Sandy Graham, Andrew Noone, Andrew Whiley, Chris Staynes, Doug Hall, Hilary Calvert, John Bezett, Jinty MacTavish, Kate Wilson, Lee Vandervis, Mayor Cull, Mike Lord, Neville Peat, Richard Thomson, David Benson-Pope, Aaron Hawkins
Cc: Sue Bidrose
Conversation: LGOIMA request – Various matters related to allegations from Monday’s meeting
Subject: LGOIMA request – Various matters related to allegations from Monday’s meeting

Dear Sandy,

Given the Deloitte comment “We do not have any objection to you sharing this letter with the Councillors.”
and my repeated LGOIMA and requests for other Deloitte information, why was this information not supplied to me well before now?!
Please state complete reasons and who was responsible for the decisions to withhold this information from me.

Regards,
Cr. Vandervis

On 18/12/15 12:03 pm, “Sandy Graham” wrote:

Dear Councillors

FYI. This is a response to a LGOIMA request that we provided to the ODT. It is likely to feature in the paper over the next day or two.

Regards
Sandy

—————————————

From: Sandy Graham
Sent: Thursday, 17 December 2015 4:33 p.m.
To: Chris Morris [ODT]
Subject: LGOIMA resposne – Various matters related to allegations from Monday’s meeting

Dear Chris

Further to your LGOIMA request, please find below and attached responses to your questions.

You stated:
At Monday’s council meeting, Cr Vandervis claimed he had paid a backhander to council staff to secure a contract prior to his time as a councillor. I’m told by the Mayor that this is believed to relate to a former staff member who no longer works for council.

Q Are staff investigating or considering the legal or other implications of Vandervis’ backhander claim?

Yes – all aspects of the transaction will be investigated.

Q If so, can you say what the implications of his statement are, and the possible options or actions that might follow? Does it, for example, trigger an investigation under the council’s anti-fraud policies, and would that look at the actions of the former staff member, Cr Vandervis, or both?

The internal auditors have been advised and they are following the process as per the Fraud Prevention Policy and Procedures.

Q What action might be taken as a result?
It’s too early to say what if any action will be taken.

Previous questions
1. What claims has Lee Vandervis made in relation to alleged fraud involving council?

See attached emails which provides documented details of recent fraud allegations. As discussed, these emails are the what we have been able to quickly identify over the past couple of years. We have not gone back further at this stage.

2. What evidence, if any, has he provided to back up those claims?
Please see emails as above

3. I’m told the DCC received a separate piece of information from Deloitte assessing the claims made by Lee Vandervis in relation to the Citifleet fraud. If possible, can I have a copy of that today?

A copy is attached with redactions to protect the privacy of certain individuals pursuant to section 7(2)(a) of LGOIMA.

As we have withheld certain information, you are entitled to a review by the Office of the Ombudsman.

Regards
Sandy

Sandy Graham
Group Manager Corporate Services
Dunedin City Council

—— End of Forwarded Message

(4) Attachments:

SC454E0591715121715540 [546869]
Email thread Bidrose 16.12.15 – Community Housing Maintenance Contract LGOIMA

Email – 2015_02_25_Redacted]
Lee Vandervis to Grant McKenzie 25.2.15 In Confidence- Alleged Fraud

Email – 2015_02_25_Redacted [546867]
Email thread Grant McKenzie to Lee Vandervis 25.2.15 In Confidence- Alleged Fraud

SC454E0591715121715470_Redacted [546868]
Deloitte to Bidrose 4.8.14 – City Fleet Investigation – Matters raised by Councillors

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

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Ratepayers, another windfall —Fifa under-20 World Cup 2015

Otago Stadium 1

Fifa NZ U20 WC logo [tourismnewzealand.com]### ODT Online Thu, 15 Aug 2013
Dunedin to host FIFA U-20 World Cup games
Dunedin will be a host venue for the biggest football tournament to be held in New Zealand.
Forsyth Barr Stadium will host games in the 2015 Fifa world under-20 tournament, organisers confirmed today. Auckland, Hamilton, Christchurch, New Plymouth, Wellington and Whangarei are also hosting games. Read more

Wow. The Spooks have worked overtime on this release, fired by opinion (and even a footnote of purpose) —not, ratepayer budgets.

Dunedin City Council – Media Release
Dunedin Confirmed as a Host City for FIFA’s Second Biggest Tournament

This item was published on 15 Aug 2013.

With just under two years until kick off in the first match of the FIFA U-20 World Cup New Zealand 2015, FIFA and the New Zealand Football Local Organising Committee (LOC) have confirmed that Dunedin will play a significant role in the tournament.
Dunedin will host seven matches altogether, including a Round of 16 clash (the round before the quarter finals). All of the games will be played under the roof of Otago Stadium.
The naming of Dunedin as a host city followed a robust selection process where a total of 7 successful cities were named – Auckland, Wellington, Hamilton, Whangarei, Christchurch and New Plymouth.
Mayor of Dunedin Dave Cull is delighted the city will be participating in one of world football’s premier events.

“This is a wonderful outcome for the city and will be a great opportunity to showcase Dunedin to players, officials and supporters. Hosting 2011 Rugby World Cup matches in Dunedin means we are well equipped to deal with another high-profile international event. We can build on what we learnt hosting RWC matches and will be working closely with Football South and other stakeholders to ensure we get the maximum effect from the event and give visitors to the city a fantastic welcome.”

Mr Cull says the city has negotiated excellent value for the ratepayers with FIFA although the terms of the arrangement will remain confidential at this time.

“Due to the considerable work done by staff, we are confident it is a sound investment.”

Darren Burden, CEO, Dunedin Venues, the company which operates Otago Stadium, is thrilled Dunedin will feature in the tournament.

“Our Stadium is an ideal football venue for players and spectators alike and, with the internationally significant scale of this event, it’s a privilege to host top class football under the roof. This announcement reinforces the importance of having an outstanding venue as a draw card to host international sporting events. I think we’re all in for a sporting spectacular in 2015.”

As for Rugby World Cup 2011, Dunedin’s Stadium will be known as Otago Stadium for the lead up to and duration of the tournament to meet FIFA’s clean sponsorship rules.
Matthew Holdridge, Chair of the FootballSouth Board, says, “On behalf of all the players, supporters, and administrators in the FootballSouth region, I would like to express our delight at the fantastic news Dunedin will host seven matches at the 2015 FIFA U-20 World Cup.

“This is a major event for our Football Federation, one that, if we missed, may not have come around again in our lifetime. I know our football community is keen to be part of this event. FootballSouth will be working closely with FIFA and the Local Organising Committee to ensure our 7,800 affiliated football members and the wider community gets as many opportunities as possible to engage with the event and the teams playing at Otago Stadium.”

Dave Beeche, CEO FIFA U-20 World Cup 2015, is full of praise for all of the cities that were involved in the bidding process and feels that having access to a covered stadium adds significantly to the tournament.

“We’d like to thank all of the cities that put in a bid to host matches for their work over the last year to get to this point. The feedback from FIFA was very positive following the recent site inspection tour and they are looking forward to a highly successful tournament in 2015. With the tournament being played during the winter, it’s fantastic to have a full covered stadium as it means we’ll have ideal pitch conditions and visitors will have another good reason to head south. The FIFA delegates were very impressed with Otago Stadium and see the roof as a major benefit given the timing of the tournament. To have seven stunning venues locked in nearly two years out from the first match gives us a great planning timeframe and we’ll use all of it to ensure that a standout event is delivered. This tournament has a huge global following and that’s the opportunity we have with this event – to deliver exposure for New Zealand and host regions, both directly during the tournament and via a massive international television audience. With the world’s best footballing talent on display and stadiums full of colour, noise, and atmosphere, it will be a new experience for New Zealand that everyone will want to be a part of.”

Altogether the tournament will host 24 national teams, include 52 matches, and will run for three weeks from 30 May until 20 June 2015. This is during the local football season, which will provide a great opportunity for the sport’s large youth playing base to be inspired by the world’s best players. With an average of three goals scored per game in the last three FIFA U-20 World Cup tournaments this will be dynamic, exciting football at its best.
The tournament will be broadcast to more than 100 countries and a global television audience of more than 170 million people[1], providing exposure for the tournament, the host cities, and New Zealand on a massive scale. It is estimated more than 7,000 overseas fans will pour into New Zealand for the tournament and to support their teams.

FIFA Factsheet (PDF, 188.2 KB)

[1] Based on the FIFA U-20 World Cup Columbia 2011 Television Audience Report produced for FIFA TV by KantraSport

Contact Mayor of Dunedin on 477 4000.

DCC Link

Related Posts and Comments:
25.10.12 Council bid lacks cost/benefit analysis: Fifa under-20 World Cup 2015
7.12.11 D Scene: Cull and councillors captured by Fifa bid, it will cost

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

*Image: tourismnewzealand.com – NZ U20 WC logo

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Stupefied and bought Kiwis (the dirt)

When everybody knows where everybody else’s bodies are buried, setting forth in search of wrong- doing with an ornamental teaspoon arguably makes more sense than marching off with a spade.

### stuff.co.nz Last updated 09:01 26/02/2013
Corruption exists by the shovel load
By Chris Trotter – The Press
OPINION: A group of wealthy ranchers and industrialists importunes the man most likely to lead their party to the White House. He hears them out politely, takes a contemplative sip from his glass of whiskey, and replies: “Boys, I’d like to help. But, like every man, I have my price. If you want me to run, it’ll cost you a well-watered ranch in prime cattle country.” The party big-wigs exchange glances and nods. Their spokesman rises from his big leather chair, extends his hand towards the beaming candidate, and exclaims: “Done!”

Now who would you say this politician was? A Texan, surely? Lyndon Baines Johnson? George W Bush? Some corrupt citizen of the Lone Star State where elections were regularly franchised out to party bosses who, when it came to vote-rigging, only ever had one question: “Do you want us to count ’em, or vote ’em?” (Meaning: Do you want us to stuff the ballot boxes, or merely round up the required number of bribed and/or intimidated electors?)

Well, to be honest, this story isn’t about Texan – or even American – politics. I only used words like “ranchers” and “White House” so that you’d have no difficulty in recognising all the behind-the-scenes deal-making for what it was: political corruption.

Had I told you from the beginning that we were talking about New Zealand farmers and businessmen, and that the politician negotiating the price of his co-operation was the future National Party Prime Minister, Keith Holyoake, then you would already be objecting: “So what? That’s not corruption. It’s not illegal to buy somebody a farm!”

I remember my old editor at The Independent Business Weekly, Warren Berryman, shaking his head in wonderment when, once again, some international outfit declared New Zealand to be the least corrupt country on Earth. Warren was born in the United States and had lived what might, euphemistically, be called “a colourful life”.

“This is one of the most corrupt countries I’ve ever lived in”, he told me. “It’s everywhere you look – but you Kiwis just don’t see it. New Zealand tops all these surveys not because it’s corruption-free, but because New Zealanders have become experts at looking at corruption and calling it something else.”

How much longer, I wonder, is the rest of the world going to be hoodwinked by Kiwis’ perverse willingness to substitute an ornamental teaspoon for a spade?
Read more

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

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