A text message sent by Richie Hardcore to Jacinda Ardern regarding Czech drug smuggler Karel Sroubek has been released.
"Myself and my friends and the community wanted to pass on their respects and praise for the decision about Jan Antolik, Karoul Sroubek, he's made a bunch of really bad choices but he's a good guy deep down, so thank you to Ian and yourself for giving him another chance," the text, sent October 30, reads.
The text is followed by a praying emoji, and was released to political commentator Matthew Hooton under the Official Information Act on Friday.
A second text, sent November 9, reads: "U r too polite to say it but I will - Bridges & hte Nats r being bastards about this Sroubek saga. I want to assist with information I hve included in an email I hve just copied u in on. If I can please advise."
The rest of the message is blanked out, and it's signed off 'Best - Alex'.
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Mr Hooton had asked for "all text messages you have received from Richie Hardcore on any topic" and "all text messages you have received from anybody else concerning Karel Sroubek".
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Sroubek, a convicted drug smuggler who arrived in New Zealand on a false passport, was initially told by Immigration Minister Iain Lees-Galloway he could stay in New Zealand following his prison sentence.
But Mr Lees-Galloway later reversed his decision, after weeks of media and political pressure, citing convictions he says he wasn't aware of when he initially granted residency.
Mr Lees-Galloway said his reconsideration came after he became aware "information may exist that appears on the face of it to directly contradict information that I used and relied upon to make that decision".
The information that was not made clear to Mr Lees-Galloway was that Sroubek had used a false identity to apply for residency, and had travelled back to the Czech Republic multiple times, despite alleging that there was a threat to his life in his home country.
National's spokesperson for Immigration, Michael Woodhouse, has slammed Jacinda Ardern for her involvement in the Sroubek saga.
Mr Woodhouse has released a statement demanding the Prime Minister explain her ties to Sroubek, and says the text messages suggest she was closer to the controversy than was let on.
"Why was Sroubek's main supporter texting her directly to pass on his 'respect and praise' over the decision to allow Sroubek to stay in New Zealand in spite of Sroubek's criminal history and the fact that he came here on a false passport?"
He goes on to name the man mentioned only as "Alex" in the texts by his full name.
"Why was one of Sroubek's fellow inmates - Alex Swney - texting and emailing the Prime Minister information on the case, which has only now been revealed in spite of months of questioning? And what was that information and what is her relationship with Mr Swney?"
"This whole thing stinks. Karel Sroubek should never have been granted residency, the government should never have tried to keep it secret, and the Prime Minister should not be involved in any way in such a decision, especially ones which allow a convicted criminal to stay in New Zealand," the statement reads.