ACT Party leader John Banks will stand trial for electoral fraud.
The High Court decision, released this afternoon [Tuesday 3rd December 2013] by Justice Paul Heath, says there is "no real challenge" to the evidence presented to the District Court Judge Phil Gittos.
"In those circumstances, there is no basis on which I should interfere with the District Court Judge’s decision to commit Mr Banks for trial," the judgement says.
So the ex-minister of Small Business has at last run out of excuses or lies or loss of memory and will now have to start remembering some well known public events. Like taking money from Kim Dotcom, Sky City to name but two, rides on helicopters, flattering Mrs. Kim Dotcom, various cups of tea and Gin and Tonics with John Key.
Of course he has been a lame duck leader since his dishonesty was made public, and I doubt if ten people would vote for him in Epsom even if John Key paid them to do so.
The Act Party will have to start looking for a new leader as of now. Who will it be?
Sir Roger Douglas knighted by the Nats for his services to the ultra right, or maybe Richard Prebble that super salesman who kissed the holy toes of Sir Roger Douglas and Sir Michael Fay and sold off the BNZ and NZ Railways.
Or could it possibly be, that still living ex-National Party leader [who was stabbed in the back while overseas by Jenny Shipley], and Reserve bank boss and Treaty of Waitangi expert Don Brash will he get the job, possibly but the latest rumour doing the rounds suggests that Don Brash is taking over the leadership of the ‘One Law For All’ Party since its hero [Allan Titford] has been jailed for 25 years
Here is the line of the events that has led to the ultimate charging of John Banks, which has proven that the PM really stretched the truth [as usual] when he told Parliament that the Police had found that John Banks had not committed any crime.
In October, Judge Gittos ruled there was enough evidence to send Banks to trial over allegations he knowingly signed a false donation return during his 2010 Auckland mayoral campaign.
Banks sought an urgent judicial review following the decision in the High Court.
It is alleged Banks signed a return, which declared donations from internet mogul Kim Dotcom and from SkyCity as anonymous when he knew who made them.
The prosecution was brought privately by retired Wellington accountant Graham McCready after police declined to prosecute.
The Solicitor-General has since taken over the case and will prosecute Banks at trial.
But Banks claims there were a myriad of factual inaccuracies in the District Court judgment that will send him to trial.
However, Justice Heath did not believe those errors "had any material impact" on the decision to commit Banks to trial.
"On the judge's view, a fact finder could infer that Mr Banks deliberately refrained from checking the donations part of the return so that he could distance himself from claims that he had knowledge of the failure to identify the two donors in question. Whether or not that can be proved beyond reasonable doubt by the Crown at trial is an entirely different issue."
It is likely the trial will take place before next year's general election.