Cunliffe hints at legal action over Liu donations saga

Labour's looking at taking legal action over the Donghua Liu donations saga.

Mr Liu is now backing away from an earlier statement that he donated $100,000 to the Labour Party for a bottle of wine.

Labour leader David Cunliffe feels vindicated "that we have challenged Mr Liu and those reporting on him to produce the evidence backing up the claim".

Mr Cunliffe is now calling for an apology and hinting at legal action.

The $100,000 Mr Liu claims to have donated to Labour now reportedly includes a $50,000 to $60,000 dollar cruise on the Yangtze River in 2007 for his staff and then Labour MP Rick Barker.

"I was really bewildered by this because the boat had up to 200 people on it. Nearly all of them were his staff and their wives and partners," Mr Barker said.

"I was one of a large number and why it was attributed to me personally I still to this day don't understand."

Prime Minister John Key last week fuelled rumours of a large donation from Mr Liu to Labour, but today backed away.

"Don't know the details, I mean never have. I mean it's a matter between them and their donor, so the Labour Party have to sort it out with them," Mr Key said.

Labour's Deputy Leader, David Parker is more vocal. 

"Maybe we've learnt to be a wee bit more suspicious about allegations that are made without evidence," he said.

"We'll expect to see some thorough reporting about some of the journalistic standards that have been shown by some of the media around this event," he added.

ONE News Deputy political editor Michael Parkin says taking legal action would be a dangerous move for Labour as it would drag out the Liu saga that it needs distance from quickly.

David Cunliffe fronts press conference. Source: 1 NEWS

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