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

John Key says a tax on foreign ownership would be 'better than a ban' Beehive Live: DHB shakeup in the works? Anne Tolley still happy for Serco to run social services for children John Key says NZ's drug bill set to rise under TPP, but patients protected Labour's Kelvin Davis says Mt Eden prison guard revelations are 'corruption' Editorial: Government should increase paid leave for parents No 'wholesale changes' to District Health Boards - Jonathan Coleman Forcing dairy farm sales will cause headaches for banks - Bill English New Zealand pad venue for top level Security Council meeting TPP could allow foreigners to buy large assets without formal approval - John Key

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