No po­lice com­plaint against re­porter

The Southland Times - - NEWS - VERNON SMALL AND RACHAEL KELLY

Clutha-South­land MP Todd Bar­clay’s Gore elec­torate of­fice con­tin­ues to be un­der the spot­light fol­low­ing a visit from Stuff re­porter Rachael Kelly on Thurs­day, as po­lice con­firm a mys­tery-bill poster has also been vis­it­ing the of­fice.

Video shot dur­ing the visit by Kelly on Thurs­day has con­firmed al­le­ga­tions that she was ag­gres­sive and in­tim­i­dat­ing to be base­less and Par­lia­men­tary Ser­vices con­firmed yes­ter­day that no for­mal com­plaint against Kelly and her cam­era­man was laid with po­lice.

‘‘We un­der­stand the po­lice were con­tacted as a re­sult of the re­porter go­ing into the of­fice but no for­mal com­plaint was laid. We un­der­stand some­body spoke to the po­lice but [did] not [make] a for­mal com­plaint’’

When asked who bought the is­sue to the at­ten­tion of the head of Par­lia­men­tary Ser­vices, David Steven­son, a spokes­woman said: ‘‘The staff down there brought it up or ob­vi­ously spoke to our staff who then es­ca­lated it through to David. So it wasn’t Mr Bar­clay, it was ac­tu­ally our staff [in the elec­torate] who spoke to us.’’

Po­lice have now con­firmed a mys­tery bill-poster is mak­ing his feel­ings about the ab­sent MP known by stick­ing no­tices to the Gore elec­torate of­fice win­dows al­legedly call­ing for the MP’s res­ig­na­tion.

A po­lice spokesper­son yes­ter­day said po­lice had at­tended Bar­clay’s Main St of­fice three times in the past fort­night re­gard­ing no­tices, which had been at­tached to the of­fice win­dow.

No fur­ther ac­tion has been re­quired of po­lice but they will con­tinue to mon­i­tor the sit­u­a­tion.

Po­lice re­fused to say whether they had re­moved the no­tices for fin­ger­print­ing, or what charges the poster could face if they were caught. Po­lice said there have been no is­sues at Bar­clay’s other elec­torate of­fices in Bal­clutha or Queen­stown.

Bar­clay, who re­mains an MP un­til the gen­eral elec­tion in Septem­ber, has all but fallen off the public radar since he was forced to an­nounce his res­ig­na­tion on June 21 amid al­le­ga­tions he made se­cret record­ings of staffer Glenys Dick­son.

Po­lice have re­opened their in­ves­ti­ga­tion to the tap­ing scan­dal af­ter Prime Min­is­ter Bill English re­vealed Bar­clay had told him about the record­ing.

Bar­clay has missed many public events, in­clud­ing MP’s vis­its to his elec­torate, and has been ab­sent from the House and se­lect com­mit­tees.

Bar­clay re­mains on his full $165,000 a year salary, bring­ing home $3000 a week, and also re­ceives travel and ac­com­mo­da­tion ex­penses.

Todd Bar­clay

Bar­clay’s Gore of­fice

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