EQC blogger's identity revealed
The identity of the man behind the EQC Truths blog can finally be revealed.
Former Earthquake Commission (EQC) employee Marc Krieger has unmasked himself as the infamous blogger who uploaded a leaked email containing the private information of 83,000 Christchurch homeowners and criticised the commission online for months.
EQC discovered Krieger's identity recently and have taken legal action against him, naming him in court documents.
Krieger received an email from EQC's lawyer while on holiday in Switzerland last week and decided to publicly reveal himself before the battle hits the courts.
The blogger told The Press he had no regrets.
"I am not afraid of anything. I am not concerned because I have right on my side," he said.
"I will tell them that I have only begun to fight and that I will not stop until we prevail."
Krieger said he was exploring options for a counterclaim "but I am unworried about this because EQC's action is so frivolous that it does not even merit my spending money on a lawyer".
EQC told The Press: "As the matter is now before the court, EQC has no further comment at this time."
Krieger, 30, worked for EQC in Wellington from May 2012 until late February this year.
Upon his return to New Zealand in mid-June, he plans to launch a claims consulting service for Cantabrians to use the knowledge he gained at EQC to help homeowners process their claims.
Krieger raised his concerns about EQC's "incompetence" to Earthquake Recovery Minister Gerry Brownlee during his stint with the commission.
While discussing Bronwlee's claim via email, Krieger requested a private chat with the minister.
"On an unrelated note, I would like to request about 20 minutes of your time to discuss my experience at EQC generally, what we are doing well, and a few constructive suggestions that my colleagues and I have for improving our processes that may not have reached you through the normal senior leadership channels," he wrote.
Brownlee did not respond to Krieger's request and The Press understands the email was forwarded on to EQC's senior leadership team.
EQC BLOGGER ANSWERS THE PRESS' QUESTIONS:
1. What did you think when you received the legal threats?
My thought was that EQC continues with its frivolous civil action and complain to the Solicitor General to silence me. My thoughts are that it is entirely baseless.
2. What are you going to do when you return to NZ?
I will contest the court case against EQC as soon as I return to New Zealand and launch a claims resolution service for people that would like a consultant to help them with their claims or a claim resolution service.
3. When do you return to NZ and where are you currently?
I return to New Zealand around the middle of June. I am currently in Europe.
4. Are you scared or nervous now EQC knows your identity?
I am not concerned because I have right on my side.
5. How do you think they found your identity?
It actually surprised me that it took the two teams of ex-cops this long to ascertain my identity. They must have narrowed it down because only a handful of people at EQC knew anything that was going on and I was the one that had been most vocal about advocating changes. I have a few guesses, but I would prefer not to reveal it.
6. Had they sent the legal threats to your blog prior to sending them to your personal email? Had EQC threatened legal action before they knew your identity?
EQC have only sent court papers to my blog addresses. Their lawyer never bothered acknowledging my correspondence. They had previously launched the civil action before they ascertained my identity.
7. Have you sought legal action?
I am exploring options for a counterclaim, but I am unworried about this because EQC's action is so frivolous that it does not even merit me spending money on a lawyer.
8. Do you think you will fight this in court and if so what will your defence be?
I will contest it in court. The reality is that I have never breached the High Court injunction, so EQC's claim is entirely meritless.
9. What are you most afraid of?
I am not afraid of anything.
10. Do you regret the blog or posting the contents of the email online?
I have no regrets whatsoever.
11. Now that EQC knows your identity are you comfortable with us naming you? If so, how old are you and where in the US were you born?
You can name me. I was actually born in Caracas, Venezuela and I am 30 years old.
12. Many Cantabrians consider you a crusader for their cause - what would you say to them now?
I will tell them that I have only begun to fight and that I will not stop until we prevail.
13. How did you get your job with EQC?
I obtained my job through a recruiting company.
14. What was it like working for the organisation?
Working for EQC was a nightmare. The organisation was run by lazy buffoons devoid of a work ethic and common sense. Many of my colleagues were great people and they shared many of my concerns. However, the managers were simply collecting a hefty paycheque because many were too useless to start businesses and were incapable of doing anything useful. As for the claimants, I found most of them to be great people who were suffering at the hands of the bureaucrats, but I enjoyed working with them.
15. What made you want to write the blog and post the info?
I decided to write the blog because I felt that the truth had to get into the public domain. I hoped that people would read it and use the information to advance their claims and encourage people to advocate for effective change. Strictly speaking, I never posted the spreadsheet. I merely reported where people could have found it from someone overseas that was not bound by the court order and had gained access to the information and posted it.
16. Why did you leave EQC?
I left EQC because I grew dissatisfied with what I saw.