David Fisher

David Fisher is a senior reporter for the NZ Herald.

Slater ready with slew of complaints

Whale Oil blogger Cameron Slater. Photo / Doug Sherring
Whale Oil blogger Cameron Slater. Photo / Doug Sherring

Blogger Cameron Slater says he will complain to police about the hacking of his Whale Oil website and will name entrepreneur Kim Dotcom as someone detectives should speak to.

He said he would also complain to the Privacy Commission, relying on a recent High Court ruling to force from author Nicky Hager his source material for the book.

The blogger has come out swinging after the publication of the book Dirty Politics, which aimed to paint a picture of a National Party obsessed with dirty tricks.

Drawing on emails obtained by a hacker, the book claims Slater is the lead "attack blog" driving negative coverage of political opponents using information from a staff member of the Prime Minister and a senior Cabinet minister.

Slater said it was a clear criminal offence to hack his computer and take his emails.

He said he had an "implied admission from Kim Dotcom to one of my sources that he was behind it" so would name him when speaking to police.

He said the case would be clear for police to prosecute.

Slater said a recent decision by the High Court that stripped Privacy Act protection from book authors meant he would be able to force Hager to divulge source information.

Slater said the book was a selective use of emails that were taken from his website during the Denial of Service attack in January.

"I kept that quiet to see where it turned up. I had no idea what they had got."

He said he did not warn anyone their communications had been taken because he had "no idea as to the extent of it".

Slater said the 8GB that Hager claimed to have was only a fraction of the content he had. "It's still a massive breach of privacy. Nicky has clearly breached my privacy."

He questioned the authenticity of emails between himself and Justice Minister Judith Collins. The book claims there were hundreds of emails exchanged but Slater said Mrs Collins rarely emailed him.

Slater also rejected claims he was paid to place articles on his website for the alcohol and tobacco lobby. "I run a business and I offer PR and social media advice and I charge for that privilege."

He said mainstream media companies were also forming commercial relationships which influenced their editorial content. When compared to what he did, he said there was no difference.

Blogger got inmate moved

Whale Oil blogger Cameron Slater was able to manipulate the prison system and have an inmate moved, author Nicky Hager has claimed.

Hager said emails he had obtained showed Slater corresponding with a friend who was upset her ex-partner was about to receive a visit from their daughter at Waikeria Prison.

The woman, who was estranged from her daughter, told Slater she wanted the man transferred and asked if he had "any ideas". Slater responded: "Yep leave it with me."

Three days later, the woman wrote back, happy because the inmate had been moved to Palmerston North.

When she learned the inmate was moving back, she contacted Slater again. He told her he would try to have him moved to the South Island.

A Corrections Department spokesman said 11,000 prisoners were moved each year for a range of reasons. "Anyone who has any concerns about an individual prisoner should raise this with us."

Prime Minister John Key said yesterday he would "get some advice on that ... I'll see whether or not I think it's a big deal."

- NZ Herald

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