Monday, June 11, 2012

S & S is Law

The Search and Surveillance Bill received royal assent (was rubber-stamped) on 5th April 2012 and significant parts of it came into force on 18th April; in particular the parts associated with surveillance device warrants, declaratory orders and privilege.

The new search and surveillance practises had to become law as the temporary Video Surveillance law expired in April.

In August 2011 the Supreme Court had ruled that during Operation 8 (the operation that resulted in the October 15th 2007 police raids up and down the country and the jailing of Tame Iti and Te Rangikaiwhiria Kemara for two and a half years) police had illegally used hidden cameras to gather evidence. Rather than look further into the illegal actions of the police, the National government believed the Supreme Court ruling called for urgent measures and the Video Camera Surveillance (Temporary Measures) Act 2011 was passed in September 2011 to retrospectively legalise illegal police action.

Other parts of the Act, such as the new laws on search warrants and production orders, will come into force on or before 1st April 2014.