Fight to continue to clear Lambert's name

  • 12/09/2011

Tuhoe Lambert's lawyer says he will fight to clear the name of his client, who died before charges laid following the 2007 Urewera police raids were dropped.

The charges against Lambert were permanently stayed, or abandoned, as he died in July, nearly four years after he was arrested during the police raids.

Firearms charges against 13 others were dropped after the crown decided not to present any evidence against them following a Supreme Court decision, details of which are suppressed.

Lambert's lawyer Kahu Barron-Afeaki said he would keep fighting on behalf of Lambert to ensure his reputation was cleared.

He said the next step in this case would be to see the remaining four people charged - Tame Iti, Emily Bailey, Urs Signer and Te Rangikaiwhiria Kemara - walk free one day.

"Beyond that ... there should be proper inquiries of a public nature as to why and how this debacle ever happened in the first place."

Mr Barron-Afeaki described Lambert, a returned serviceman who fought in Malaya and Vietnam, as "a patriot to this country".

"He had two nations. One was Tuhoe, the other was New Zealand. He felt passionate for both.

"He was a kind man, he was a social worker ... he was always trying to look after and heal people."

Police originally applied to have charges laid under the Terrorism Suppression Act - which the Solicitor-General rejected - but Mr Barron-Afeaki said the issue should never have arisen.

"That was a joke in itself. There may have been some pub talk and the like, but it was never, ever terrorism."
AP

source: newshub archive