May 10, 2016
Support for convicted bird killer
Former Tai Tokerau MP Hone Harawira doesn't believe Sonny Tau's convictions for killing kereru and attempting to pervert the course of justice should spell the end of his time as a Ngapuhi leader.
Tau, who took leave from the chair of Te Runanga o Ngapuhi last year, pleaded guilty in the Invercargill District Court yesterday of concocting a story with his daughter's partner about which one of them shot the five birds he was found with last year.
He was told to expect fines totalling $25,000, 100 hours community work and three months under a curfew.
The Ngapuhi Runanga says it's now considering his future status.
Mr Harawira says the conviction should have no bearing on tribal leadership, especially for something many in the tribe don't consider a crime.
"Far be it for people in Ngapuhi to say to Sonny 'you can't stand because you've got convictions,' considering the number of convictions our people would have rattled up over the last untold decades. What started as something dumb just got dumber. Because of all that and handling it the way he has, he's ended up copping that kind of flak but that's life, that's how life works out. Some times you win and that one clearly he didn't," Mr Harawira says.
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