National News Brief, Thursday September 18

Fonterra's Chinese nightmare; new police powers 'draconian'; Peters back before committee while Labour goes after his supporters; Greens promote new Hillary holiday; and more

  • A third baby has died in the Chinese milk powder poisoning, and 158 are reported to have acute kidney failure, the New Zealand Herald reports today under the headline Fonterra: This is as bad as it gets. The company's chief executive Andrew Ferrier was defending his company's choice to work with Chinese authorities in secret for over a month, but in the Dominion Post lead a Fonterra spokesman has admitted the situation raises "governance and management issues". The contamination was only made public when the New Zealand government learnt of the crisis and blew the whistle. Since then, the Otago Daily Times reports, industry-wide testing has found contaminants in similar products from another 21 companies.
  • The government wants police to have the power to search without a warrant if the crime is punishable by 14 years or more in prison and detain people present at the search, says the ODT. The new bill is meant to tidy up core police powers which the Law Commission has said are "scattered around the statute book". But in The Press, the Council for Civil Liberties says the law is "draconian", allowing police to undertake "fishing expeditions".