Auckland City District Police Commander Superintendent Howard Broad has acknowledged His Honour Judge Gittos’ comments relating to the dismissed charge of possession of cannabis.
Mr Broad said that, having had time to fully digest Judge Gittos’ decision, it is clear he used the occasion to reinforce existing law relating to searches and, in particular, issues relating to the application of the Bill of Rights.
"Obviously the dismissed case against Christopher Fowlie has caused us to re-examine our practices to ensure that we comply with the law.
"Judge Gittos drew attention to two main issues - what determines a justifiable search and the apparent absence of a report to the Police Commissioner once Section 18(6) of the Misuse of Drugs Act had been invoked."
Mr Broad said the search was reported to the Commissioner in the normal way and evidence of that report had been located at the Commissioner’s office.
He added that issues raised by the Judge were being examined and staff in his district would be further reminded of the scope of their powers and guidelines regarding best practice around Section 18(6) of the Misuse of Drugs Act and the provisions of the Bill of Rights.
The Cowlie case would not be appealed. Mr Broad indicated that it was a timely reminder of well-established legal requirements.
Issued by Noreen Hegarty
Auckland City District Communications Manager
Ph 09 302 6947 or 025 951 589