Todd Barclay tapes contained 'sex and drugs' matters - report

Clutha-Southland MP Todd Barclay
Clutha-Southland MP Todd Barclay Photo credit: Lloyd Burr/ Newshub

Newsroom has revealed more about the intercepted discussions in Mr Barclay's office, reporting the recordings at the centre of the scandal surrounding him contain talk of "sex and drug matters".

The latest story from Newsroom claims that Parliamentary Services knew about the tapes and confirmed them to the lawyer representing Glenys Dickson, who worked in Mr Barclay's Gore electorate and claimed that her conversations were recorded.

In Ms Dickson's police statement from February 2016, which Newsroom has obtained, she says her lawyer told her Parliamentary Services knew that recordings existed "which concerned Todd Barclay regarding sex and drug matters".

In a statement to police in April 2016, Bill English said Mr Barclay had told him he'd recorded Ms Dickson. Police re-opened the investigation into Mr Barclay on Tuesday, after a week of intense media scrutiny that saw Mr Barclay announce his early exit from politics.

Labour leader Andrew Little said that police reopening the investigation is the right thing to do, and that the latest report raises new questions about the content of the recording.

"I think the new disclosures by Newsroom about what the contents of the tapes might be adds something interesting to it," he said. 

"It's hard to explain why the Prime Minister has taken the stance he has for nearly eight days now, and it does add up to looking like he's trying to hide something, and it may well be the content of those tapes."

Mr Little had questioned Mr English in Parliament on Tuesday about his knowledge of the recording, but the Prime Minister refused to comment, saying he did not have ministerial responsibility and that there was a police investigation underway. 

Assistant commissioner (investigations) Richard Chambers said in a statement on Tuesday that police have "commenced speaking to a number of individuals who may have relevant information".

Any new evidence which is gathered will be carefully considered to determine what, if any, impact it has on the outcome of the original investigation.

"This will be a thorough process with oversight from a senior detective, however at this stage we are unable to put a timeframe on how long it might take."

Newshub.

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