Coach Steve Hansen is sticking by the All Blacks' Aussie-based security expert.
Adrian Gard, a 51-year-old director of the security company Bodyguards International, is due to appear in Sydney's Waverly District Court on March 21 to answer a charge of public mischief.
The charge does not imply Gard placed the listening device in the All Blacks' Sydney hotel room last year, but he is alleged to have misled police during their investigation.
Hansen said he can't understand why Gard would be charged and has also taken a swipe at suggestions the All Blacks timed the public outing of the scandal to give them an advantage over the Wallabies in the Bledisloe Cup.
"I don't understand it. I know the guy that has been charged with it and I've got a lot of time and a lot of respect for him," Hansen told Newstalk ZB's Tony Veitch, in an interview set to be broadcast this afternoon.
"I don't see any motive for him to do it. That's why I can't believe it.
"There's been a lot of talk already and people have been very quick to make judgements. The old, old rule is you're innocent until proven guilty.
"I don't think it's fair the way some people are attacking it."
Hansen said Gard has spent at least a decade in the AB's camp, an environment only the best are allowed to enter.
"He might have even been there longer than that, to be fair. He's someone we hold in high regard.
"We took him to the World Cup in 2015, so he's not a fly-by-nighter and he's not a fly-by-nighter in his business - he's massively respected.
"We don't have people working for us who aren't experts, aren't good at what they do and that you can't trust."