John Hudson’s career has been distinguished by a knack for breaking big stories, sometimes exposing criminals in the process.
In 1990, he first broke the Cooperite scandal about a Christian commune living on the West Coast, now commonly known as Gloriavale, which led to the leader, named Hopeful Christian, being imprisoned for sex offences.
In 2011, working with producer Chris Cooke, Hudson conducted an investigation on Christchurch housewife Helen Milner, whose husband had apparently committed suicide. Milner was later convicted of his murder, and sentenced to life imprisonment.
Hudson's own closest brush with the law came in 1985. While in Paris investigating the bombing of the Rainbow Warrior for TVNZ news, he was arrested by French police. Later released without charge, Hudson would go on to interview members of the French Secret Service team that sank the boat.
In 2015, along with producer Chris Cooke, he tracked down and interviewed Colonel Jean Luc Kister, the diver who placed the bombs on the boat. The story was reported around the world, including by the BBC, The Guardian, and Time.
Hudson's career as a journalist began back in 1975, and he landed a job with TVNZ in 1984. He’s been a reporter at the network ever since, filing stories for Eyewitness, Holmes, Frontline, 60 Minutes, Assignment, and Sunday.
Hudson investigated the contaminated milk powder in China, which had originally come from NZ. It alleged that more people had been killed by the powder — containing the toxin melamine — than had previously been admitted by the Chinese government.
Nominated for Investigation of the Year, the story won the 2009 Qantas Television Award for Best Current Affairs Reporting on a Weekly Programme (shared with producer Stephen Butler, cameraman Leander Scott-and researcher Portia Mao).
Hudson also won a Qantas Media Award in 1997 for his SUNDAY investigation into odometer fraud on imported Japanese cars. John continues to work as a guest reporter.