STRAIGHT TALK: Getting the facts together next time

By Richard Moore
IT IS fair to say that former Tauranga City councillor Hayden Evans was under the gun for much of his term in office.
Evans, an engineer, often queried decisions on council spending, getting offside with some fellow councillors and staff in the process.
Although, it has to be added, the councillor did not help himself on occasions - such as drink-driving, refusing to pay rates after a dispute over use of his land or secretly recording fellow councillors after a series of leaks about his personal information.
The most serious of the incidents that drew publicity for Evans was two years ago when police seized his gun collection - a semi-automatic AK-47 rifle, a .22 rifle and a shotgun - saying he was unfit to hold a weapons licence.
Evans, a former soldier, said it was political payback for annoying several fellow councillors and he had evidence to back up that claim. The names of the complainants are included in documents police used when taking his guns, some of them were people on Tauranga City Council and within Tauranga police.
Those complaints were laid within 24 hours of Evans admitting he had recorded conversations in the councillors' lounge.
One other person named was involved in personal disputes with Evans.
Last week, Evans travelled back from Perth, where he is now living and working, to a civil court appeal to get his guns back.
The court case was adjourned because police did not have the paperwork ready to proceed.
Western Bay police commander Inspector Mike Clement said the hearing of the appeal was originally set down for last Tuesday's court sitting, but both parties had a view on how it should proceed.

"I went along prepared to give the evidence based on the information given to me by the witnesses, but he wants the witnesses there in person," Mr Clement said.
This is the fourth time that Evans has appeared in court and the fourth time police have not had the paperwork ready for him to appeal against.
Judge Robert Wolff has said the appeal is de novo, or from the beginning, which means all claims against Evans have to be presented freshly and so statements to police must be presented as sworn affidavits, or evidence in chief, and not just hearsay.
Several questions come to mind about this case.
If it was such an open and shut matter why have the police not got their evidence together, despite court orders, in four court appearances?
Would a member of the public be given such leniency?
And why would a man living and working in another country undergo huge expense to return here to get his guns returned?
Judge Wolff posed that question to Evans who said he was also fighting to clear his name.
The case is set down for a return bout on September 12 and, hopefully, we'll find out exactly what is what.
IT ALWAYS was going to happen but, as a fan, I really hoped Amy Winehouse wouldn't join the ranks of musical stars killed by over-indulgence in drugs and alcohol.
The Grammy-award winning artist was a fabulous talent - just listen to her Back to Black CD - but she clearly was deeply troubled.
Nicknamed the Train Wreck, the beehive-haired singer had so much ability and yet was unable to beat her demons.
One of her hit songs was called Rehab in which she talks about going into a rehabilitation clinic.
The lyrics are now horribly macabre.
"They tried to make me go to rehab, but I said 'no, no, no.'
"Yes I've been black, but when I come back you'll know, know, know. I ain't got the time and if my daddy think I'm fine.
"He's tried to make me go to rehab, but I won't go, go, go."
At 27, it is a shame.
Amy, you should have gone to rehab, yes, yes, yes.
THERE'S a bit of a family joke in the Moore household that my kids love to annoy me with.
Basically, they reckon I look like TV presenter Mark Sainsbury.
Well, we both have very little hair, and very fine moustaches, however, I reckon I'm sportier and better looking.
I went along to last week's Rugby World Cup roadshow in Dive Cres to take photos of a young local kapa haka group. During the event, TV One's morning weather personality Tamati Coffey met the group and I got a great shot.
Coffey is a really nice guy, but after I took the pic he said: "Has anyone told you you look like Mark Sainsbury?"
I didn't know he knew my kids ...

- Bay of Plenty Times

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