'I want an apology then I can move on': Teina Pora

Teina Pora says his compensation claim isn't about money, but an apology.

"I deserve compensation, but for me it's not about the compensation," he told TV3's 3D yesterday in his first TV interview.

"I want an apology ... Then I can move on."

He said the money would never bring back the two decades he had spent in prison.

"But it would help my daughter, and my grandson, to live a good life," he said.

Mr Pora, now 39, spent more than 21 years in prison for the rape and murder of Auckland woman Susan Burdett in 1992, before his conviction was quashed this year by the Privy Council in London.

A retrial was ruled out.

When asked about what he thought of the police and justice system he said:

"To lock away a man for something he didn't do, and let him go through hell and the shit I had to live with: they go home and feed their kids while my daughter and I am suffering," he said.

"It eats me up inside."

Mr Pora in April put in a claim for compensation for wrongful conviction and imprisonment and could be claiming more than $2 million.

Cabinet guidelines indicate Mr Pora could be asking for about $2.1m as compensation for loss of liberty and emotional harm is calculated on a starting point of $100,000 for each year in prison.

There are also payments for loss of future earnings by being jailed and Mr Pora may get a public apology or statement of innocence.

Ministry of Justice officials will assess Mr Pora's claim and if they deem it merits further assessment a Queen's Counsel, or retired judge, will be appointed to assess it.

The QC, or judge, will advise whether they think Mr Pora is innocent on the balance of probabilities and how much compensation he should get.

A final decision is made by Cabinet.

It is not clear whether in proving his innocence, Mr Pora will have to prove who killed Ms Burdett.

In 1994, he admitted he accompanied serial rapist Malcolm Rewa to Ms Burdett's house.

In 1998, Rewa was found guilty of raping 39-year-old Ms Burdett, among more than two dozen victims, but two hung juries couldn't reach a verdict on whether or not he murdered Ms Burdett.

Teina Pora. Source: 1 NEWS


Wellington bus network changes to be reviewed after council bombarded with complaints

Wellington's new bus network will be independently reviewed after ongoing complaints of buses being late, too full to board or not showing up at all.

The regional council today voted today to have the system reviewed and the results reported back by December.

Since the system was changed in July the council has been bombarded with complaints.

Councillors have also asked officers to change a route so that it began and ended in Kilbirnie, as it previously did, and for feedback on whether some other routes can be changed.

Regional council chief executive Greg Campbell said he took full responsibility for fixing the network's problems.

He said the review needed to be done quickly.

"Any commuter that is left stranded, or a bus that is late, that is of extreme concern. We have to get a clear view of what is happening. What an independent review can really do - particularly for management and council - is give a view of what has happened and articulate that well."

At the beginning of the meeting several Wellington residents addressed the council to let it know they were still unhappy with the new bus routes.

A Wellington principal said the recent re-jig of the routes was making his students late for class and putting them in danger.

St Patrick's College, Kilbirnie's rector Neal Swindells told this morning's meeting about 100-150 boys were using the new service.

"Currently our two 753 buses from the station in the afternoon are significantly overloaded and are unsafe. On Monday this week, they were both loaded to the gunnels and there were 30-odd students who couldn't get on. So what they do is they cross the road to catch the new 24 bus, which by the time it leaves St Pat's now is also overfull."


Commuters at a bus stop in Newtown. Source: rnz.co.nz

Motorcyclist in critical condition after crash near Upper Hutt

A serious crash has left a motorcyclist in critical condition and caused a section of State Highway 2 to close for a time near Kaitoke, Upper Hutt.

Police say a motorcyclist hit a barrier at Kaitoke this afternoon about 4:30pm.

The male rider was taken to hospital via helicopter in a critical condition.

The road at SH2 Kaitoke, Upper Hutt is now open again after closing for a time.

A road closure sign in front of a Police vehicle
A road closure sign in front of a Police vehicle. Source: 1 NEWS


Government reveals details of emails between Clare Curran and Derek Handley

Details of the email exchange between former Digital Services Minister Clare Curran and Derek Handley were revealed today during Parliament's Question Time. 

Ms Curran said she was not aware of RNZ's policies surrounding meetings with Minister's at the time.
Source: 1 NEWS

The messages were sent over the role of chief technology officer, with Ms Curran using her private Gmail account to send the emails. 

An offer to Mr Handley for the role was retracted by the Government last week, resulting in a $100,000 pay out to the entrepreneur. 

Acting State Services Minister Grant Robertson told the House the following about three exchanges between the pair about the role. 

First exchange

August 11: 

"Derek Handley emails Clare Curran about the chief technology officer position and questions about the role of the CTO, including resourcing for the role and potential conflicts of interest."

August 14

"Clare Curran replies to that email, confirming a call to discuss these matters."

August 15

"Derek Handley replies to that, confirming times for the call."

Second exchange

August 19

"Clare Curran emails Derek Handley regarding logistics around the next step on the process of appointment, including the content of any public statements that might be made, and refers to contract discussions with the Department of Internal Affairs (DIA)."

August 20

"Derek Handley responds to that email to Clare Curran about those issues, including the contact he has had with DIA and management of conflicts of interest."

Third exchange

August 21

"Clare Curran emails Derek Handley regarding issues that would be on the work plan of the chief technology officer and attaches some relevant background documents on those issues.

"On the same day, Derek Handley responds to Clare Curran, acknowledging the material and referring to the discussions that he is having with DIA."

Derek Handley says he’ll donate the compensation but is disappointed at the way the issue was handled. Source: 1 NEWS

The chief technology officer was intended to "drive a forward-looking digital agenda for New Zealand", said the then Minister for Government Digital Services Clare Curran, when the role was announced last December. 

The new Minister for Government Digital Services Megan Woods said the Government have put a "full stop" on the process.

Ms Curran was stripped of her position as Minister for Government Digital Services after not disclosing a meeting with Mr Handley previously.

Over 20 vehicles vandalised overnight in suburb on Auckland's North Shore

More than 20 vehicles have been damaged overnight in an area on Auckland's, North Shore.

Police say a number of vehicles' tyres have been vandalised in Birkdale's, Tiri Tiri Road and Woodhams Street area.

Anyone who has had their car damaged is urged to report it to police if they haven't already done so.

Police are making area enquiries and conducting scene and forensic examinations and are interested to hear from anyone who may have information.

John Healy says people drastically underestimate the risks of leaving kids or pets in their car.
Source: 1 NEWS