Key deflects questions over Collins

AIMEE GULLIVER
Last updated 08:50 18/08/2014
John Key
DAVID WHITE/Fairfax NZ
JOHN KEY: Standing by Judith Collins

Relevant offers

Politics

Chris Trotter: Deep State, big trouble Mum takes DHB to court for failing to prevent her son's death in the mental health unit English punts talk of electoral deals, Maori seat strategy, into the stands Hone Harawira gets clear Te Tai Tokerau run for Mana not running against Maori Party in other seats Bill English slams NZ Super Fund for chief executive's 36 per cent pay increase 'Doing it for greed' Labour leader Andrew Little on Cadbury factory closure Te Atiawa opposes land bill but keen to be part of better solution Rangitikei MP Ian McKelvie looking forward to election campaign While Christchurch burns, Wellington talks Willie Jackson: The health of our democracy is at risk with the Electoral Commission failing voters

Prime Minister John Key refuses to answer questions on the appropriateness of Justice Minister Judith Collins leaking information to a blogger.

In Nicky Hager's book, Dirty Politics, released last week, Hager alleges Collins and WhaleOil blogger Cameron Slater were behind an attack campaign that led to public servant Simon Pleasants receiving death threats.

Collins on Friday admitted giving Slater the identity of Internal Affairs official Simon Pleasants. She thought he was responsible for leaking information to the Labour Party about Finance Minister Bill English's taxpayer-funded accommodation allowance in 2009.

>Share this story on Facebook.

Pleasants was targeted on WhaleOil the day after Collins emailed Slater saying: "Simon Pleasants, manager, ministerial property".

Police became involved after death threats were directed towards Pleasants, his wife and children. Pleasants has denied leaking anything.

Key is standing by Collins, and said he did not know all the details of the scenario, so would not go into it.

"I don't know all of the details behind all of that," Key said on Radio New Zealand's Morning Report today.

"What I do know, is that it [the book] is a series of selective pieces of information, many of which can't be backed up."

The allegations were a "smear campaign" from the Left, he said.

Key denied Jason Ede had run a "dirty tricks" campaign when he worked for the prime minister's office.

Key said he did not know Ede had accessed private information about Labour Party donors on their website.

"I probably should have known, because there was some correspondence between National and Labour that a person had," Key said on TVNZ's Breakfast programme.

But he denied the claim that National had "hacked" the website, arguing that a lapse in security meant anyone could access it.

"The point is, if the Wallabies left up on their public site their starting 15 on Tuesday, would the All Black management go and have a look?"

Share this article on Facebook.

Ad Feedback

- Stuff

Special offers
Opinion poll

Should the speed limit be raised to 110kmh on some roads?

Yes

No

Vote Result

Related story: 110kmh limit moves closer

Featured Promotions

Sponsored Content