There could have been a tragedy
By Carol Sawyer
Eugenie Sage, Lou Sanson – please remember Cave Creek and do the honest thing by the people of Whitianga whose crime was to not want their water, land and wildlife poisoned.
Remember Cave Creek ? Turns out Denis Marshall, Minister of Conservation at the time, actually offered to resign immediately after the accident ( but Jim Bolger told him not to ). See this link :
Well what happened in Whitianga on the night of 17 October, 2017, isn’t Cave Creek, or anything close to it, obviously.
However there might have been an enormous tragedy in Whitianga if that undeclared, improperly stored 23.7 tonnes of 1080 baits had caught fire.
Still, there has been a huge injustice and nobody from DoC is offering to resign!
It was the accused who was assaulted
What we do have is a man, Graeme Sturgeon, wrongly accused of assault. He was wrongly accused by an unlicensed security guard from an unregistered company, who was employed by the Department of Conservation to be in charge of security guarding a clandestine 1080 poison loading operation.
This was in a public car park, in the dark, with no “Keep Out” signs. In fact it was the other way round – it was Graeme Sturgeon himself who was assaulted and injured in an unprovoked attack by that same security guard.
We are told there were 14 or 15 employees there that night – Heliresources staff, DoC staff, and DoC Security including DoC 1080 Projects Manager for Coromandel, Nick Kelly, and DoC 1080 Senior Ranger Steve Bolton.
Bolton apparently saw the whole thing, was looking down at Graeme Sturgeon as he picked himself off the ground, and when Graeme said “You bastard Steve Bolton! ( knowing who Steve Bolton was from old Forest Service days ) Bolton went back inside the DoC office.
We hadn’t seen hide nor hair of DoC since, in this case, until Nick Kelly appeared for cross-examination!
We know nothing
In Coromandel, not only do we have no offer of resignation from any DoC staff, even from the relative minions like Steve Bolton.
No, they are just slithering back under their rotten planks as fast as they can go, and leaving one of their lowliest employees to face the music – not that he is to be excused for his actions, of course!
The security guard was employed by them without even the legal authority or capability to do his job, and had probably had his head filled by DoC with stories of people brandishing weapons, people ready to shoot choppers out of the skies, fierce pig hunters at the end of their tether having lost all their dogs to 1080. In fact he was just dealing with three superannuitant whistleblowers.
(To be continued)