(The Freedom Thieves)

By: Tony Foote

The New Zealand Orator Disclaimer:
These articles are NOT open to interpretation. They are what they are, our opinion based on experience. If you take offence, too bad! We don’t give a shit if you can’t process the truth! Don’t bother to complain!

The NZ Orator...


Things you must remember

  • Say Nothing to police - with or without a lawyer
  • Police are NOT your friend
  • Always be polite.
  • Always ask to see a lawyer immediately.
  • Say nothing other than your name, address and date of birth
  • Never speak to cops without a lawyer present
  • Police lie to get you to confess - Say NO COMMENT!
  • Say only "NO COMMENT"
  • Police will threaten you if you don't play their game. Say "NO COMMENT"
  • Never confess
  • Never plead guilty

STAY COOL - Deny! Deny! Deny!

Shut Up or Go to jail!



There is nothing more dehumanizing than having your home searched by police. When the knock comes at the door, unless the resident has seen the police arrive, he has no idea of what is about to transpire. First, the detective leading the search will identify himself (or not, because the New Zealand police do not always follow the law) and hand a search warrant to the person who answers the door. He will then be asked if he minds if the police conduct a search of his premises. If the resident refuses, he will be told he has no right to do so (and should say "I do not consent to searches") and told to stand aside. He will then be handed the search warrant as the police, both men and women, push past him and enter his home. If asked what they are looking for, the police will answer, "don't you know?", or "read the warrant".
From that moment, things get very hectic. Drawers are pulled out and emptied onto the floor, as are all cupboards, boxes, bags etc. Contents are piled on the floor as police go through all items of property, whether it belongs to the person named on the search warrant, or not. The resident is stunned and tries to read the search warrant. Specified at the top of the warrant will be the nature of evidence or property sought. The warrant will also contain the description of all buildings and specific parts of that, or adjoining properties. It will not contain the exact nature of the offence of which the resident is suspected and he will not be informed by the police unless be is arrested.
Confused, angry and frightened, the resident watches as the police move around to the rear of his dwelling. They walk into every outbuilding, moving everything around, throwing your property into heaps on the ground and poking into every nook and cranny, hoping to find some piece of evidence to link the resident, or someone who lives at the dwelling, to an offence. If they can't find any evidence, they can and sometimes do plant it. I personally saw a police officer plant a small packet of Cannabis in a lounge sideboard they had already searched, when I unexpectedly came into a room. He saw me and smirked - saying "what's this?". I said to him,” you should know, I just watched you put it there." He removed it and put it back in a bag he took from his pocket, then put it away again. At this point the resident is still unaware of the nature of the offence. He will ask the detective again, "What's going on, what are you looking for?", and will again be told, "Come on (first name), you know what you've done". If the resident asks again, he will probably be threatened with arrest for "Obstructing an officer in the course of his duty". If a friend or relative arrives at the dwelling during the search, he will initially be advised to leave. If he stays to comfort his friend, police will want to know who he is and where he lives, his connection to the resident and suggest they may pay him a visit later. If the visitor attempts to extract information or inform his friend of his rights, he will be warned by the police he will be arrested. Any assistance offered to the resident in any way by anyone will be treated with aggression by the police. There have been cases where an elderly person has been threatened in this way while going to the aid of a son or daughter. While the search continues, the resident, whether youthful or elderly, man or woman, must watch as police poke through their personal belongings. They must endure the embarrassment of police handling underwear and other personal possessions as sarcastic and insulting comments are made. The final indignity must then be suffered as police search through a hamper of dirty laundry in the washing machine. waiting to be washed. For many whose homes are searched in this way, the indignity can be too much and they break down and cry. This will not deter the police, who will smirk sarcastically at each other. No attempt will be made to pacify or comfort the person being searched.
During the search, items of property will be held up and examined as police ask, "Hello, what have we got here", insinuating impropriety of some kind. Any item, no matter how valuable will be listed then thrown into Council rubbish bags. The resident will watch as his whole life is turned inside out, then trashed as though insignificant.
The resident at no time during the search is cautioned nor read any rights, neither is he spoken to by any of the police searching his home. Ultimately, the only right he has is to watch helplessly, while the police turn his home upside down. A search can take several hours, often finding nothing incriminating. The police will leave. There will be no apology given. The resident is then left to clean up the mess which resembles the results of a burglar ransacking the house during a break in. The police are not responsible for restoring the property after carrying out a search. If at any time the resident is cautioned or told not to leave the premises, it should be clear to him he is going to be arrested. If the suspect is asked to accompany the detective in charge to the police station, and asks "Am I under arrest?", the detective will probably say "No, but I'll arrest you if you want me to". Although not under arrest, if the suspect then refuses to go with the detective, he will be arrested under sec 315. This is an arrest without a warrant, based on the police believing they have probable cause to believe the suspect has committed an offence against the law. Contrary to popular opinion the police do have the right to arrest a suspect without a search warrant. When this occurs, police prefer the resident, now a suspect, not contact his solicitor. If he does not ask to telephone for one, the police will not offer the choice. They will prefer to interview the suspect without the interference of a lawyer.
Finally, the suspect is conveyed to the police station where he will be interrogated for several hours. Probably the last thing he will see for the next few years is his home disappearing into the distance, from the back seat of a police car.


After the police have completed their search of the suspects premises and taken him into custody, the questioning process begins. There may be an attempt made by police to question the suspect in the car on the way to the police station. No answer should be made to any question asked in this way, no matter how innocent the questions may seem. At all stages of interview police will try to gain the confidence of the suspect. A suspect who has never been questioned by police will not know this tactic. He may answer freely, putting his freedom at risk. At no time should any suspect communicate with police without the presence of his lawyer. Once at the police Station the suspect should be cautioned before making any statement to police. He should then be asked if he requires a lawyer to be present. The suspect should answer "Yes", then say nothing until his lawyer arrives at the police station. At this time the suspect should be allowed to speak to his lawyer who will give him instructions, which will normally be to make no statement and reply "No comment" to all questions. If the suspect is unable to do this or he does not understand the instructions, he should ask his lawyer to remain in the room throughout the interview. This will prevent the suspect from being pressured into making any statement or comment which could be damaging to his chances of a quality defense. During all questioning, if you are a suspect, always answer “NO COMMENT” to everything except your name, your address or your date of birth. Questioning is a harrowing experience. It begins simply enough with the suspects name, how long he 'd lived at his present address then quickly turns into an allegation that he'd committed some kind of crime. Initially the accusation will hit the suspect like a ton of bricks. It will feel as though he has just drunk 10 cups of strong, milky coffee, and it will affect the heart in the same way as doing so. The suspect will break into a cold sweat; whether or not he is guilty of anything. If he has not asked for a lawyer and makes a statement to the police, he will usually regret it because in many cases the initial statement is often the convicting evidence. A confession can be elicited under duress with simple police manipulation of the facts. It is their job to obtain the truth, even with the extensive use of lies, a confession and a conviction. The lengths and methods they use are up to the individual policeman. The use of pressure to obtain a confession at a time when the suspect may be distraught, frightened and confused is unfair and unreliable. Statements elicited under this form of pressure are often untrue. Police will try to persuade suspects to confess and make it easier on their loved ones. This makes it almost impossible for the accused to withdraw a guilty plea at a later date, when he realizes he has made a terrible mistake. Attempting to change a plea from guilty to not guilty on the grounds that the suspect wanted to protect certain persons is not generally permitted. Pressure may be applied by police informing the suspect they intend to tell the judge he was unco-operative and this will make sure he does not get bail. Often the suspect has not yet been arrested but arrest in itself can be a technical point. Unless it has been made clear to the suspect he is under arrest, or he may not leave the police station, he is free to go and may do so at any time. If the suspect attempts to leave, and if the police believe he has committed an offence, he will be arrested under section 315 of the Crimes act 1961. An arrest warrant will not be required for this and it will not be necessary for the arresting officer to state in technical language, either a caution or the fact that the suspect is now under arrest. If the suspect does leave however, police pressure will be more intense if he is later arrested. There are often allegations of police brutality by the suspect during an interview. One hears of telephone books being placed on the person of a suspect and struck with a baton. Who hasn't heard that police will beat a suspect, without leaving marks if he doesn't tell them what they want him say. Accounts of these forms of police brutality were evident, though not prolific, in prison. Most inmates told of their verbal abuse of the police who then retaliated physically, often causing the suspect injury. No one spoke of being beaten to force them to make a confession. The interview seemed to be a cat and mouse game. Some police had a reasonable idea who was guilty but showed no partiality to those they thought may be innocent.
Others could not or would not make the distinction. Ideally it would be helpful if suspects were able to feel they were receiving fair treatment. Unfortunately, through interviews I have conducted in the writing of this piece show that only some police are genuinely interested in getting the truth from a suspect, and investigate reported crimes thoroughly. Unfortunately some do not. Occasionally, police are accused of acting prejudicially towards certain suspects. This would mean the suspect, once arrested and held in a remand prison, was hounded by police still seeking a confession, and indeed, this happened to myself. This was nearly always spontaneous and was not done in the presence of a lawyer, which led me to wonder why the Department of Corrections let the cops in like that in situations which could be nothing, but detrimental to the accused. A remanded inmate has the right to refuse to speak to police. If he makes a statement, the consequences are his responsibility. At the end of the interview the suspect would either be released if there was insufficient evidence to prosecute him, or he would be taken into custody.
This would be either 'Protective ' custody, if police felt he was at risk from attack from persons associated with complainants or members of the public, or custody to appear in court the following day, or, as often happens, to place more pressure on an accused to confess. Upon completion of the interview the suspect would be told what type of custody he was being placed in Police custody, the police cells, is noisy, smelly and degrading and it can be a huge shock for a first timer, particularly when the first timer is an 84 year old man, who pees his bed and has no idea who he is. Again, the police did this, and the old man ended up in a main prison wing and intervention was applied to stop him being abused in there. I personally witnessed this and was part of the group who had him moved. You will read more about this later. On delivery to the lock up, the suspect is stripped of his watch, wallet, money, tie, shoe laces, credit cards and everything else except his clothing. A receipt for his property is issued and he is asked to sign the back of it. On the back of the receipt form is a pre-printed statement that the suspect has been asked if he requires a lawyer and has declined. If this is not true for the individual suspect, he should not sign it. After details have been taken and the receipt signed the suspect is taken to a cell. On the way he will be issued with 3 blankets and a pillow. when he reaches his cell he will be asked to surrender his shoes. They will be left in the corridor outside his cell. Later he will be taken to a room where he will be photographed and finger printed. Visitors or a lawyer will generally be permitted on request. Any visit will take place under supervision and there will be no physical contact. Meals should be provided if the suspect is in custody over meal times although there are cases where suspects have been denied food until the following day. This happened to myself. It left me hungry, sick, having a mental breakdown, denied food and in jail. Sleeping in the police cells is difficult They are quite small and cold. Many contain nothing but a combination stainless steel hand basin and toilet and a concrete slab for a bed. Mattresses are plastic covered, for hygiene not comfort, and the three blankets are often insufficient to provide warmth. Sleeping on a concrete slab in the middle of winter is very cold, no matter how good the heating is. All through the night the police move around. Doors are slammed which keep most prisoners awake. Many were very tired and irritable for their court appearance in the morning. Prisoners are asked if they require a shower. Breakfast then comes around on a trolley. It is similar to that in prison, cereal, toast and tea. I was not offered this, and had to watch as all others were fed. After breakfast all prisoners are placed in the day room where they wait. Because smoking is not permitted, most prisoners are desperate for a cigarette. A policeman may bring cigarettes to those requiring them. Eventually the prisoners will be taken individually into a viewing room, where several detectives sit behind a blinding light, and will be made to stand on two red footprints painted on the floor. This is illegal. It was done to myself, and others who went through that morning. Behind the prisoner is a height scale on the wall, Details of the prisoners alleged crimes are read out and he is recorded on video as the detectives pass derisive comments about the charges. After this, the prisoner is then taken back to his cell where he waits for the prison van ride to court.
At around 8.30am, the prisoners from the nights roundup are bundled into a police van and driven to court. Sex accused and those requiring protection, old men, sick people, underage accused, would be placed in the front section of the van. All others went in to the rear. All along the way, those in the rear of the police van abused and threatened the already terrified men in the front. There was a Perspex divider to prevent those men in the rear from attacking the ones in the front. When the van pulled into the loading dock beneath the court, the two groups were removed from the van and led to separate cell beside the courtroom. Here they would wait until called to appear before the judge.
Police attitudes at court depended upon the accused and the nature of the accusation. Many of those men appearing in court had been there many times and were often well known by particular police officers. Some police were on first name terms with some of the prisoners and talked to them as though they were friends. The rest of the prisoners were either ignored by the police, or comments were made about the nature of their allegations in such a way that all other prisoners knew what they were accused of. This could be particularly dangerous for men accused of indecencies against children (since the Peter Ellis witch hunt was in full swing at the time and corruption was everywhere) although rapists didn't seem to matter. Police would look in through the peep hole in the cell door where a child sex accused was being held, and smirk at him. Many made comments such as "Dirty bastard... He needs shooting". All comments were made so loudly that the accused would hear them, so would all other prisoners in the vicinity of the court cells..
Not all police conducted themselves in this manner at court. A meager few were there to simply do their job. One particular older policeman took a sex accused cups of tea and checked regularly to ensure no harm had come to him. Time went by and the accused's case dragged on, that same policeman stood outside the court and watched the accused’s elderly father and other members of his family being assaulted by friends of the complainant. Many other uniformed police watched the same incident but did nothing to stop it. Quite often, innocent family members are left feeling violated by the police they'd always thought would protect them. You can not trust the police in New Zealand, or for that matter, police in any country. This feeling is often passed onto the defendant who will then plead guilty under the delusion he is protecting his family. That is the plan of the police and justice system. It must flow so into jail you go!

Bottom line..... Pigs are shit! You can't trust them! Don't trust them and if you ever get in trouble, say nothing to them!