Liam Ashley's killer 'haunted' by his victim in prison

Former top police negotiator Lance Burdett has told SUNDAY that convicted killer George Baker was haunted by nightly "visions" of his victim.

Baker was convicted of murdering 17-year-old Liam Ashley in the back of a prison van in 2006, and sentenced to 18 years.

In 2009 Lance Burdett was called to Paremoremo prison where Baker had taken a fellow inmate hostage, on the anniversary of Ashley's death.

Prison guards told him that Baker had "done similar things on each of the two previous anniversaries", and had set up a kind of shrine to Ashley.

"We found out that every night Liam 'visited' Baker in his cell," says Mr Burdett.

He believes guilt, "pure and simple", was the motivating factor behind Baker's behaviour.

Last year, in a ONE News exclusive, Ashley's parents, Lorraine and Ian, said that they had since forgiven Baker and wanted to help him.

To hear more about Lance Burdett's career as a negotiator, and his battle with depression, watch SUNDAY, tomorrow at 7pm on TVONE.

Lance Burdett: "We found out that every night, Liam visited Baker in his cell" Source: Sunday



Paua quota cut blamed on recreational fishers, forestry

Commercial fishing operators are pointing the finger at their recreational counterparts as the Government looks to cut paua quotas in the Marlborough Sounds.

Commercial paua fisherman Dave Proctor is gutted his paua quota could be cut by between 40 and 60 per cent, and he wants to be compensated.

A reduced quota of 60 per cent is only being applied to commercial operators in the area which has angered some, but scientists say there may be another cause. Source: 1 NEWS

"I still have a boat to maintain and all the other stuff, I still pay quota levies, so yeah, it definitely hurts," he told ONE News. 

The proposed quota clampdown is in response to declining paua stocks in the upper South Island.

The ban will apply only to commercial operators and Mr Proctor is angry the Government is not targeting recreational catchers as well, despite an official report admitting they were part of the problem.

"It shouldn't be just the commercial fisherman, just because we make a living out of it," he said.

But scientists believe the forest industry is also to blame for dwindling paua stocks, with sediment from commercial operations polluting waterways and killing a large seaweed called kelp that's vital to the growth of paua.

"Sediment makes water muddy. Sediment makes it hard for kelp to grow. Sediment gets in the guts of paua, they don't grow so well, so they're stunted," said Katherine Short, Terra Moana researcher.

The forestry industry says it's not the primary cause of sedimentation, but it still wants to work with local authorities to mitigate the effects of their operations.

Local iwi won't be affected by the proposed cuts, but they're disappointed some are abusing the system.

"Unfortunately there's a whole lot of citizens in New Zealand who don't have to worry about that because they have this automatic right to go down, take what they can," said Richard Bradley, Rangitane iwi spokesman.

Mr Proctor says there are nowhere near enough ministry fisheries officers and it's too big an area to police.

Marlborough has also taken another hit with the Government banning scallop fishing for the coming season too.


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Fishing trawlers told to 'lift their game' after killing record number of dolphins

Greenpeace is calling for all fishing vessels to be monitored after it was revealed more dolphins are being killed than ever before.

Most recent government figures from 2013/14 confirm fisheries observers saw 30 common dolphins snared in nets.

Greenpeace and other protesters say the government isn’t doing enough to save protected species such as Maui’s dolphins. Source: 1 NEWS

That's nearly double the previous year, yet trawling activity is still going down. 

But because only about 15 percent of boats are monitored, researchers say it's more likely over 80 dolphins have been killed. 

Green MP Eugenie Sage says the Ministry for Primary Industries needs to "enforce the law".

"These are protected species," she says.

The fishing industry calls the deaths unwanted interactions and environmentalists agree, but say the industry could do something about them.

Protesters have been fighting for critically endangered Maui's and Hector's dolphins and say the government isn't doing enough.

"I've seen pictures of dolphins that have been dragged from the nets and they've begun to rot in the nets," said protester Jake Benge.