"We have maintained a silence closely resembling stupidity" - Neil Roberts

Until we have legislation adopted into law to ensure fiduciary accountability and transparency in public affairs we will continue to have human rights breached because the existing crown immunity and lack of any independent oversight invites corruption to flourish.

"Question authority, and think for yourself" - Timothy Leary

"We have maintained a silence closely resembling stupidity" - Neil Roberts

"Information is the currency of democracy" - Thomas Jefferson

‎"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it's the only thing that ever does." - Margaret Mead

"The truth is like a lion, you don't have to defend it. Let it loose, it will defend itself."

"I = m c 2 [squared] where "I" am information" - Timothy Leary

"Ring the bells that still can ring, forget your perfect offering, there's a crack in everything, that's how the light gets in." Leonard Cohen

"The internet is a TV that watches you"

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Julian Batchelor's dodgy earthworks:

Julian Batchelor's been a busy man.  Below is a screenshot from Mr Batchelor's website.

Much of the material on Mr Batchelor's websites has been blatantly plagiarised from the local tangata whenua and their own existing land management plans, but Julian Batchelor likes to make out that all this is his idea, and he is leading the local tangata whenua who are his great friends.  This would not seem to be the case in actual fact.  In fact, emails between Mr Batchelor and Ngati Kuta kaumatua and hapu representatives expose a very ugly picture of Mr Batchelor indeed, nothing like the image Mr Batchelor likes to portray in his carefully stage managed public profile.

"Recently we wrote to the Department of Conservation and the Government asking them to seriously consider . . . " blah blah - this is directly copied from the hapu resource management plans and marae websites.  But Julian Batchelor hasn't consulted with hapu at all.  His communications with the tangata whenu seem to be that he met a couple of Maori chaps on the beach one day, asked them if they were locals, they told him they were, so he asked them if they'd like a job mowing his lawns etc.  Julian is now claiming that these chaps told him they were local kaumatua and authorised to speak for the hapu and make important decisions.  On the beach. Or while they were mowing the lawns perhaps . . .

Ngati Kuta and Patukeha would have expected Mr Batchelor to have written to the hapu long ago requesting a formal meeting to discuss his extravagant plans.  If he had done so a hui would have been convened at Te Rawhiti Marae, and notices issued to the whanau far and wide to allow full consultation, to facilitate this.  Mr Batchelor is a real estate agent.  He knows all about the importance of doing due diligence, and the implications of Te Tiriti o Waitangi, including the all important and much overlooked fourth clause of Te Tiriti regarding the sanctity of preserving the Maori spiritual beliefs and freedom of religion.

Julian Batchelor, as a real estate agent.  He is also very well aware of the importance of the laws and bylaws regarding proper consultation processes.  Everyone knows that every second Maori gentleman down the beach is likely to pull their leg and tell the tourists he's a local kaumatua, and his grandmother was a Maori princess, that's what the tauiwi want to hear.  A real estate agent - especially one who has received emails since 2009 - prior to him purchasing the property from the person who had no right to sell the land to him, advising him in no uncertain terms that the land is Ngati Kuta land, in fact our most precious and sacred land, and is under claims in the Waitangi Tribunal, and under protection from Heritage NZ - Julian Batchelor is taking the mickey to feign innocence in the knowledge of these matters!  Of COURSE he was aware of the legal requirements!

Having been stopped abruptly in his tracks by the Stop Work Notice and the Heritage New Zealand intervention, Mr Batchelor suddenly wants to "consult" with the locals.  'The locals' are not fooled - Mr Batchelor has been used to doing things on a very matey basis with the FNDC, fooling them into giving him vague "verbal consent" to desecrate our land and wreak destruction upon our land and Crown land and DoC land, on the basis of a cup of tea and a verbal chat.  Hapu are not so casual in their approach to this matter and have requested that Mr Batchelor and the Far North District Council provide all information regarding Mr Batchelor's developments, resource consent and building consent applications etc, forthwith and have advised them in no uncertain terms that there will be no 'consultation' until ALL of the information has been provided - Mr Batchelor was given until the 4th December 2015 to provide ALL information regarding the recent works to FNDC, then FNDC gave him until the 12th, then the 23rd - he's provided NONE of it!  But is trying to hurry hapu to meet with him, on the eve of the Christmas holidays, and make decisions in the absence of any information whatsoever - who does he think he is???

Julian Batchelor is a real estate agent and property developer from Auckland.  He is also the founder and 'leader' of a religious cult.
Julian and 'the team' at Evangelism Strategies International, ready to take on the world.

He has a plan to get rich renting out his "Oke Bay lodge" - the going rate for similar accommodation is $1200 per night plus extras.  He also plans to use Maori land and other land he doesn't own as part of his plans, which also include "evangelising" everyone who uses the Department of Conservation track to "Cape Brett", and has set up a slick website, including Department of Conservation "APPROVED" logos, intellectual property belonging to the local hapu (Maori tangata whenua, people of the land) which he has blatantly plagiarised without permission, etc.

Unfortunately, Mr Batchelor's plans don't live up to all the hype.

Here we have some evidence of Mr Batchelor's handiwork. 

We're waiting to see Mr Batchelor's resource consents - does this look straight to you?

This picture clearly shows the pohutukawa tree Mr Batchelor demolished to make way for his lawn.

You can see what a mickey mouse job this is just by looking at it!

Mr Batchelor then had some vague verbal chat with his mates at the Far North District Council, who issued "verbal consent for some work but not the work Mr Batchelor actually carried out" according to the Far North District Council.

Not worrying himself with trivialities and bothersome details such as resource consents and legal requirements, Julian and his trusty retired Christian engineer swung into action.  No end of heavy machinery was brought in and the knight in shining armour set about constructing a castle befitting his status as the very embodiment of god himself sent to save the world.  Unfortunately for the local residents whose lives depend on the road, which promptly collapsed into the sea under the weight of the heavy machinery and the erosion caused by Julian Batchelor's cowboy plumbing arrangements.

Julian parks his logs anywhere he likes.  This is the access to the local urupa (cemetery).  Locals are disgusted.

The actual size of the logs, and weight of them, can be seen in this picture.  Completely blocking the access to the urupa.

Te komiti are exploring a number of legal avenues and have a number of plans in place should Julian Batchelor attempt to continue to desecrate our land and evangelise our people.  We have our own spiritual leaders at Rawhiti and may of the local tangata whenua are deeply offended by Mr Julian Batchelor's arrogance and the utter contempt he has shown for the very laws that Ngapuhi signed a treaty to enforce against the tauiwi, let alone the utter contempt, and patronising condescension he has demonstrated toward the tangata whenua.

Mr Batchelor touts that "the locals are friendly" - and so we are.  The people of Te Rawhiti have been always renowned for their hospitality to visitors.  We are a kind, humble, gentle people, with a history of getting along with others, and working with others to mutual advantage, but the only advantage to be had from Julian Batchelor's plans is to Julian Batchelor. Mr Batchelor is blatantly exploiting the tangata whenua, and blatantly flouting the law with utter contempt for either the law or his neighbours.

Mr Batchelor also touts on his websites that his Oke Bay Lodge is well equipped to deal with "the overflow of visitors at the local marae".  He can't even deal with the overflow from his own teka kaka (filthy stinking raw sewage) let alone the visitors to our marae - if he'd bothered to take a glance at the websites of Ngati Kuta me Patukeha and Te Rawhiti marae he would have perhaps become aware that among the spiritual beliefs and practises of the people of the marae are included several other religions, such as Ratana.  He may perhaps have become aware that in fact the very first Ratana church in New Zealand is at the site of another Ngati Kuta Patukeha wahi tapu very close by.  Our kuia conduct Ratana church services regularly in the whare at our Marae, and Mr Batchelor's ignorant and arrogant lack of respect to their spiritual beliefs and freedom of religion, and freedom to visit their loved ones on the wahi tapu above the Marae, without Mr Batchelor's incessant harassment, his accosting them on the way to the urupa and our other lands, and his obsessive efforts to 'convert' them to his preferred form of religion.  He has no empathy or understanding of other people whatsoever, they don't matter to him, apart from where they fit in his plan, and he decided where we fitted long ago, the trouble is, he has never consulted with us, about any of it.  He is now claiming that he knew nothing about any problems.  That's blatantly untrue.

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Paturoa Kauri ring-barked in shocking early morning attack:

In breaking news, another local property developer has shown a similar contempt for the law to that shown by Mr Julian Batchelor - killing a tree in West Auckland without conscience or right, with utter contempt for the tangata whenua OR the english laws:

23 December 2015

The ancient Kauri in West-Auckland that has been the focus of a community campaign to save it was attacked at 6.15am this morning and viciously ring-barked risking the safety of Johno Smith occupying the tree.

As the arborist lay up in the canopy he was woken by the noise below. He saw eight people suspected to be security guards dressed in black arrive on the property. Three had electric chainsaws and proceeded to cut the tree while five were waiting in a van.

Shocked neighbours called out to the men who immediately stopped and departed the site but by then they had cut the full circumference.

“This is vengeful action by the developer who was facing being stopped by the High Court today” says Aprilanne Bonar, spokesperson for Save Our Kauri.

Neighbours are currently assisting Police who are on-site interviewing. Eye witnesses have given the registration of the van to the investigating officers as part of their enquiry.

Last Monday Save Our Kauri applied to the High Court for a Judicial Review and was in negotiations with the developers until late last night.  

Sunday, December 20, 2015

More trouble for Julian Batchelor - under investigation for possible damage to archaeological heritage sites:

Te komiti o te Kaitiaki o Opourua received information this afternoon that Heritage New Zealand are investigating possible damage to archaeological heritage sites on the land Julian Batchelor is occupying at Rawhiti.

On top of all his other problems, Batchelor now has to pay to have an archaeological report undertaken, and faces having the book thrown at him if he has damaged the ancestral wahi tapu.

Julian and 'the team'

Julian Batchelor spreads teka kaka on te wahi tapu o Opourua.

Te komiti o te Kaitiaki o Opourua are looking forward to viewing the information held by the FNDC and Julian Batchelor regarding the plumbing at his 'Oke Bay Lodge'.  Locals are less than impressed by Mr Batchelor's project management of the developments at Rawhiti in the breathtakingly beautiful Ipipiri (often referred to by visitors as the Bay of Islands).

The crucial criteria Julian Batchelor requires from the engineer apparently consists of the following:
  • Be a Christian
  • Be retired
  • Be prepared to work for no pay
 Julian sees himself not so much as a real estate agent, but more as a knight in shining armour, ready to save the world and evangelise every one of the (supposedly) heathen savages of the land and anyone else who ventures forth on the 'Cape Brett Track' and everyone in the near vicinity in fact, and nothing is beyond his superman capabilities, even plumbing and building retaining walls, let alone being God's spokesperson.  His God will provide and all will be well, Mr Batchelor knows what he's talking about; according to him.

Of course it helps to attract the simple minded and gullible if you tell them that the land is owned by a Christian Charity - a "trust". 

Instead of telling them the truth.  The land is Maori land.  It has always been Maori land, owned by Ngati Kuta.  It is one of our most sacred and precious wahi tapu.  The bones of our great grandparents lie on that land.  Mr Batchelor has demonstrated nothing but contempt for the tangata whenua, and nothing but contempt for the law.

Locals witnessed and recorded the ongoing saga of Julian Batchelor's handiwork.  In detail, unfortunately for Mr Batchelor. 

This is an easterly facing view of Mr Batchelor's deck - the road and sea are behind the photographer.

This is the same deck.  Beneath it can clearly be seen a pipe or hose underneath the deck.
If the image above is opened in any reasonable image viewing software and enlarged, the pipe or hose under the deck can be clearly seen.  It disappears into the fill behind the original retaining wall, right above where the wall collapsed.  And right above where the road collapsed too.  

This is the same area shown in this video:

Other pipes on the property were also leaking, including what several 'guests' and witnesses described as "raw sewage flowing down the driveway".

'Guests' staying at Julian Batchelor's lodge witnessed (and photographed) raw sewage flowing down the driveway of Julian's 'Oke Bay Lodge.  Julian charges $5000 for the pleasure of watching sewage flow down the driveway, over our land, our sacred wahi tapu.

Julian Batchelor may care to reflect on the fact that there may well be serious consequences resulting from his actions.

Friday, December 18, 2015

All hell breaks loose for ESI's Julian Batchelor:

Statement from one of the tangata whenua:
Rawhiti Bay of Islands

Possible violations of FNDC consents for a large scale luxury accommodations lodge for tourists in Rawhiti, Bay of Islands, by the Auckland based ESI CHURCH Group, has got local residents and community members revved up in a fury of anger.

The earth works began several weeks ago without appropriate consents which has resulted in an abatement notice being served last week.

 But, unfortunately not soon enough. Many native and legacy trees on the property have been destroyed.

“It breaks our heart to see, of all things, a CHURCH, bulldoze over native trees that made up the landscape of a prime and possibly one of the most beautiful locations in New Zealand, in order to make itself money, said John Willoughby Rewha Parkes of the Rawhiti Hapu Whenua alliance”.

Visually, the destruction is hard to the look at. The natural shape and flow of the land has been changed to make it look more like a supermarket car park.

It’s disturbing to look at, and also disturbing to think that a Church group is capable of such destruction.

We will be seeking redress of course, but at this point in time we are gathering all information concerning what approvals were or were not issued and for what work exactly.  We are also seeking all engineering reports and archaeological reports.
The property is registered as owned by a commercial entity of the ESI Church structure and is being project managed by Church founder Julian Bachelor.

Thursday, December 17, 2015

Retaining wall collapses, road falls into the sea and more trees cut down:

This is the situation on the property in September when the komiti began actively recording the damage and looking into the situation regarding Mr Julian Batchelor's resource consents.  The retaining wall collapsed, several kauri trees and other vegetation had been removed and this was just the beginning of what was to come.

The road also collapsed into the sea directly in front of Julian Batchelor's collapsed retaining wall at the same time.

During the next six weeks or so Mr Batchelor - a real estate agent who knows the rules but chooses to ignore them, went ahead with further major works without consent from the Far North District Council, without consulting hapu or iwi, and in breach of the bylaws.

Information requested from Julian Batchelor and Far North District Council:

Julian Batchelor
Representatives from the komiti Kaitiaki o Opourua have requested information from Far North District Council regarding all works on the site at 147 Rawhiti Road in the Bay of Islands.

Last week Te Komiti o te Kaitiaki o Opourua urgently requested that the Far North District Council issue Mr Julian Batchelor with a Stop Work Notice effective immediately pending inquiries into breaches of bylaws and the Treaty of Waitangi, regarding work done without consent on land he occupies at Rawhiti, and the serious adverse effects of the breaches of the bylaws and unconsented works on the surrounding environment, and on the tangata whenua, our wahi tapu, and our whanau, hapu and iwi.

The Notice was duly issued by the FNDC and served on Mr Julian Batchelor last week and the komiti are currently awaiting the information that they have requested from the Far North District Council according to the Official Information Act, LGOIMA and other legislation, prior to convening a hui to discuss further action.

Correspondence regarding these requests is copied below:  To be updated . . .

Email sent by te komiti o te Kaitiaki o Opourua to FNDC on 14 December - 
Tena korua Wayne Smith and Sam Van Ameringen, 
Mr Julian Batchelor was given until the 4/12/15 to provide the requested  information relating to RC2160177.  Additionally he was required to provide information by the 14 December 2015 relating to bylaw and building code breaches. 

Has any of this information been provided?  If so please provide copies of the information, and please provide all information previously requested, starting with the most recent information and working back, regarding the property Mr Batchelor occupies, and the road in the near vicinity, including the recent collapse of the road in front of 147 Rawhiti Road which we witnessed, all roading reports, photographs of the collapsed road, etc, the consents for the retaining walls, the original one and the replacement one, all other consents applied for whether approved or not, verbally or in writing, and all other information FNDC holds regarding the property at 147 Rawhiti Road. 

Hapu can not make informed decisions in the complete absence of any relevant information, and we need to be sure about what has happened and when, and exactly how this situation has come about.
Please provide all information relating to the bylaw and building code breaches without further delay, in particular the information Mr Batchelor was required to provide by 14 December 2015, and all other information requested as soon as possible.
Thank you for your prompt attention to this matter. 
Na Katherine Raue
KaitiakI o Opourua

Far North District Council have confirmed as at 16 December none of the information Mr Batchelor was required to provide has been provided.

This post will be updated and prior emails published as well as updates.

Saturday, December 12, 2015

Stop Work Notice issued effective immediately:

The Far North District Council has issued Julian Batchelor with a stop work notice (Abatement Notice ordering him to stop all work immediately).

The notice can be viewed at this link.

Application for Stop Work Notice.

Te komiti o te Kaitiaki o Opourua me Araaka me Hauai have requested that the Far North District Council issue Julian Batchelor with a Stop Work Notice and Abatement Notice and ensure that he ceases the works and developments he is carrying out on the property at 147 Rawhiti Road at Hauai because of serious damage to the surrounding environment and the effect of this damage on the local people, as well as breaches of Far North District Council bylaws.

Above is an image on Mr Julian Batchelor's slick website, this is one example of the scope of Mr Batchelor's plans for not only the land he occupies, which is under Treaty claim and should have been returned to iwi by the former occupier as Mr Batchelor is well aware, but his plans to control access to and exclusive use of everything in sight including the track to Rakaumangamanga which currently under Department of Conservation management.  Mr Julian Batchelor has also taken the liberty of renaming everything in sight too, including our maunga tapu Rakaumangamanga (which he and others refer to as "Cape Brett"), our moana, Opourua, which he (and others) have renamed "Oke Bay", among other taonga and cultural heritage.  Not only is this disrespectful in the extreme, it would seem to be illegal.  The recent earthworks certainly are.

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

More on Julian Batchelor's retaining wall:

This photo shows the damage to the trees and vegetation, Batchelor chopped down the historic pohutukawa tree and has erected a garish 'Christmas tree' instead.

The original retaining wall Mr Batchelor erected, which soon collapsed.  The shoddy standard of work is clearly apparent

The wall collapsed, taking the land with it.  At the same time, the road in front of the property collapsed, falling onto the beach.

Here is the link to Julian Batchelor's application for resource consent to "construct a retaining wall within the road and boundary set up." (sic)

Note Mr Batchelor only lists a Post Office box and writes "NA" - not applicable in the space where he is required to provide another address.

The Far North District Council gave "verbal consent" to Mr Batchelor, whereupon Mr Batchelor took the liberty of carrying out a considerable amount of vandalism and destruction, which was done without consent - the "verbal consent" applied to unspecified minor repairs, not the large scale earthworks which were actually carried out.

Here is the link to the letter the Council sent him requiring him to provide more information, specific information, by the 4th December 2015, according to section 92 of the Resource Management Act.  Mr Batchelor hasn't provided any of it, showing a further blatant disregard for due process or the law, and Council are now saying that that they are "trying to get hold of Mr Batchelor and speak with him but are unable to get hold of him."

Formal requests have been made to Council to issue a Stop Work Notice immediately pending further consultation with tangata whenua and local hapu and further investigation by Council and independent engineers into the damage done to the land and surrounding areas and the significant environmental and cultural effects.

Sunday, December 6, 2015

Formal application for stop work notice to be served on Julian Batchelor:

Te komiti o te Kaitiaki o Opourua me Araaka me Hauai have requested that the Far North District Council issue Julian Batchelor with a Stop Work Notice and Abatement Notice and ensure that he ceases the works and developments he is carrying out on the property at 147 Rawhiti Road at Hauai because of serious damage to the surrounding environment and the effect of this damage on the local people, as well as breaches of Far North District Council bylaws.

Above is an image on Mr Julian Batchelor's slick website, this is one example of the scope of Mr Batchelor's plans for not only the land he occupies, which is under Treaty claim and should have been returned to iwi by the former occupier as Mr Batchelor is well aware, but his plans to control access to and exclusive use of everything in sight including the track to Rakaumangamanga which currently under Department of Conservation management.  Mr Julian Batchelor has also taken the liberty of renaming everything in sight too, including our maunga tapu Rakaumangamanga (which he and others refer to as "Cape Brett"), our moana, Opourua, which he (and others) have renamed "Oke Bay", among other taonga and cultural heritage.  Not only is this disrespectful in the extreme, it would seem to be illegal.  The recent earthworks certainly are.


Far North District Council
6 December 2015
Tena koutou katoa,
This is to confirm our request made verbally to Kyra earlier this afternoon for all information regarding resource consent application number 2160177-RMALUC for147 Rawhiti Rd by Julian Batchelor, and all information regarding all other applications for resource consent applications for this property and any of Mr Batchelor's other properties at Rawhiti. 
In particular, and with urgency, we request all information which Mr Batchelor was required to provide to the Far North District Council by 4th December 2015 regarding the application referred to above, and clarification as to whether or not Mr Batchelor actually had proper consent or not when he went ahead with recent major earthworks etc on the property.
Would you please confirm today whether or not Mr Batchelor provided all the information required by the due date, and provide it and the other information as soon as possible.

Thank you for your attention to this matter.

Katherine Raue
Te Komiti o te Kaitiaki o Opourua

Justice system - what justice system?

The decision of Brown J is still not on the Ministry's website despite the public interest in the decision.

That's hardly surprising considering what the decision actually says.

The decision is embedded below but can also be accessed at this link for easier viewing.

The New Zealand government is held in contempt overseas as well as on home ground for the manner in which they have manipulated the miners and their families, the money, the propaganda, and everything that's gone with it, toying with the baubles of office, telling tall stories, playing with so many lives.

This is a dangerous precedent and can not be allowed to go unchallenged.

Worksafe prosecuted Peter Whittall, not the Crown Prosecutor, 'Worksafe' - the former Department of Labour - the very people who should have been standing in the dock alongside Peter Whittall.  The real reason the charges were dropped, as we all know, is because it was clearly apparent that Whittall's evidence was going to incriminate the prosecutor - Worksafe.  

Para 31 looks at whether the prosecution decision was reviewable and talks about whether prosecutorial discretion was exercised or not - but crucially, not whether it was exercised PROPERLY, or fairly, or in an ethical manner.

This is why there is so much injustice and why the Ombudsmen and other agencies dealing with complaints are swamped with them, because the so called justice system is seriously dysfunctional and one of the main reasons for that is the difficulty in having prosecutorial decisions judicially reviewed.

The decision refers to precedents which established that prosecutorial decisions should only be subject to judicial review if they are in regard to abuse of process.  This case certainly seems to fit the bill in that department . . .

In paragraph 42 Brown J states "I do not consider that the impugned process is of such gravity that the high level of restraint should be relaxed and judicial review permitted."  Twenty nine men are dead.  What exactly does constitute "gravity" in his book I wonder?

The simple fact is this, if the Police or the Crown Prosecutors make the decision to prosecute they should get it right BEFORE they lay the charge, not after, and certainly not after making some dirty little back room Pontius Pilate deal like this one.  Otherwise, they should be subject to judicial review - especially after they lay a charge and then withdraw it or offer no evidence. 

Poor wee Joseph.  Look at him, full of hope for the future, all he wanted was a job, full of trust, we should be demanding accountability for Joseph and the other men - look at this young man - barely more than a child, and killed inside a mine that everyone knew was a time bomb!

And have a look at the ladder - the emergency exit - what a joke!  The shaft collapsed during construction, the whole mine was an utter death trap and a catastrophe just waiting to happen.

Related links are here.

Recommended reading - Rebecca Macfie's book - Tragedy at Pike River Mine

At this link is an unrelated example of a seriously flawed and blatantly and indisputably corrupt prosecutorial decision of similar magnitude, which also shows how even the threat of judicial review was enough to make the prosecutor think again, suddenly announce they intend offering no evidence and run for the hills.  In order for there to be justice and transparency in New Zealand prosecutorial decisions must be subject to  review.  This site's full of such examples - must make a new label - never enough hours in the day - this post will be updated, but is being published now due to public interest in the decision.