New Zealand’s Prime Minister (infamous for his gay red shirt joke) has been forced to apologize after making a joke about a child abusing murderer who fled to Chile and then to Brazil last week. (read John Key’s killer paedophile joke disgusts victims’ family, 12/11/14 Stuff.co.nz)
Phillip John Smith, 40, was serving time for a string of offenses including murder, child molestation and extortion. Smith killed the father of a boy trying to protect his son from molestation and interfered with other young children.
Smith amassed 20 convictions in the five years before being sentenced for extortion and being found guilty of murder, aggravated robbery and six sexual offences.
Among those offences were fraud, possession of a firearm, assault with a blunt instrument, common assault, attempted arson, cultivating cannabis, making a false statement to police, theft and escaping custody.
Smith obtained a passport from prison and escaped while on temporary release, boarding a flight to Chile.
Key, attending the APEC summit in Beijing, told reporters he would have a word with Chilean President Michelle Bachelet about Smith when he met her
“I’ll just let her know there’s someone who could be out there from New Zealand that you may not want to invite round for lunch,”
He was later forced to retract his statement after the offence he’d caused.
Madeleine McCann and name suppression
New Zealand has a poor reputation for keeping its many child sex offenders under control. Roderick William Macdonald, 76, a known pedophile, is wanted in connection with the disappearance of British toddler Madeleine McCann.
While living in New Zealand Macdonald was charged with three indecent assault charges on a child aged under 12. Yet despite the seriousness of the charges he was granted bail. He fled the country soon after.
Perhaps the best example of how seriously New Zealand views pedophilia was shown by the judge who granted a well known TV personality and comedian discharge from conviction, despite his admission that he’d molested his four year old daughter.
The man was also given name suppression, just to sweeten the deal.
Sentencing Judge Phillipa Cunningham said the man was a talented New Zealander who “makes people laugh”. She found that the consequences of a conviction would outweigh the seriousness of the crime, saying “Laughter is an incredible medicine and we all need lots of it.”
Unfortunately Mr Key took her words literally.
“Some Prime Minister”
What New Zealand really needs is a robust and properly resourced criminal justice system and a less Laissez-faire attitude to sex offences. It’s no laughing matter.
The sister of the [man Smith murdered] said: “He [Key] has made a joke of the whole country and its systems which he runs. I thought it was disgusting that he laughed about it.”
The sister said Key would not be making a joke if his family had been the victims of Smith.
“My nephew [Smith’s victim] wasn’t impressed at that either. It was another kick in the guts for him. It is really hard to see any humour in this for us. Some prime minister,” she said.
She said she held Key personally responsible for the failings of his government’s departments that have put her family at risk again.
“Do these people realise what they have just done? It is not just going to go away. What do we do? How do these boys carry on and know they are safe?” she said.
She had moved to escape her fear of Smith, one of her nephews moved overseas, and another was still under police protection.
“I know the boys are scared for their family. We are the only ones who got the sentence,” she said.
She was angry that no one had been held accountable for Smith’s disappearance and believes someone should resign immediately.
“How the hell can someone walk out of a prison cell and on to a plane? I want to know who signed this off, and who is going to be responsible,” she said.” …more here
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