Kiwi scrapper Vince Siemer arrested in US

Last updated 17:28 17/10/2012

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Legal scrapper and former bankrupt Vince Siemer has denied allegations he drunkenly chased a tow truck in Nashville screaming "I love that car!", during a recent visit to the United States.

A report in Nashville's City Paper said he was arrested by police while running after a tow truck "loudly professing his affection" for the vehicle it was towing, although he did not own the vehicle.

Police charges of public intoxication and disorderly conduct were reportedly retired by a judge because Siemer was leaving the US within a week.

Siemer told BusinessDay the charges were "a complete fabrication".

"The cop was angry because I was walking in the street," he said. "I laughed at him and he got pissed off [and said] 'you're drunk I'm hauling you in'.

"His supervisor said he couldn't do that so then he said 'well he was chasing a tow truck too'."

Siemer later added by email there was "some truth" in the City Paper's story, but said it was a trivial matter compared to his Supreme Court fight over whether courts have the power to suppress publication of criminal judgments.

In May, Siemer lost an appeal against his conviction for contempt of court after publishing on his website a suppressed ruling relating to the Urewera case. His six-week jail sentence was stayed after the Supreme Court granted a further appeal over whether New Zealand courts have inherent power or jurisdiction to suppress judgments in criminal cases.

Siemer, who in December 2008 lost a defamation case brought against him by insolvency practitioner Michael Stiassny, was bankrupted in November 2008 over $251,437 in costs orders relating to the case.

The bankruptcy was discharged in November last year.

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