How the public helped police seek out white supremacists after mosque shootings

How the public helped police seek out white supremacists after mosque shootings

Every time the NZ media have to write a story about an Islamic terrorist activity, they also write an article on the same day about a “white” terrorist to counter the Islamic one they’re reporting on.

It was a requirement of FIANZ (the Saudi initiated terrorism sponsors of New Zealand’s own Aotearoa Maori Muslim Association a.k.a. Islamic State in NZ) after March 15 that the Government search out RATs. To this end, they targeted white people, not those from Islamic countries who moved to escape Islamic terrorism, through the new Antifa startup named Paparoa. Many of the trade unionists and others involved in Paparoa were advocates for gun rights for the Urewera terrorists a decade earlier.

So essentially, this NZ Government has enlisted their own supporters who advocate for armed resistance to RAT out their ideological opposition for prison or at least public humiliation.

A good number of those 2800 odd complaints were about this website, as evidenced by the numerous visits we’ve received over the last two years from NZ law enforcement. Gov’t officials turn up asking if we support Trump and other miscellaneous how-much-we-value-our-whiteness-type-questions. If you’re curious as to how these visits go, we’ve documented one visit, minus some personal names, accessible here. As you can tell, we have a lot of fun, all at our own expense (as taxpayers ourselves!).

An irony is that every time the media slam ‘white-identity’ as a bad thing, we get calls or visits from our ethnic friends ‘checking up’ on us reminding us that we should be proud of our heritage because that’s why they’re here!

This from stuffed.

In the two years after the Christchurch mosque attacks, police received over 2800 tips of potential national security interest, of which over 850 were flagged as individuals that may have white supremacist ideologies.

While the figures may seem worrying at first glance, they are more a reflection of Kiwis’ determination that white supremacists should be identified, rather than the number of white supremacists in New Zealand.

Figures provided under the Official Information Act show between the day of the shootings and December 10 last year a total of 2825 tips of potential national security interest were supplied to police, with 854 coded as individuals that may adhere to white supremacists or white identity ideologies.

After procuring the data, Stuff sat down with two of the people at the heart of efforts to investigate the leads.

Detective Inspector Sean Hansen manages counter-terrorism investigations. He has the stereotypical hardbitten demeanour of an inspector. When offered a coffee, he says he’s already had two long blacks that morning, so he orders a regular flat white.

Ash Johnston is manager of the High Risk Targeting Teams at the National Intelligence Centre. He isn’t a sworn officer, and a well-cut suit strikes more of the intelligence service than law enforcement. He orders a small flat white. They agree to talk, but refuse a photo.

“We prefer to operate a little more obscure than that,” Hansen says.

The first thing Hansen wants to stress: there are not 854 white supremacists roaming New Zealand – nowhere near it.

“It could be misconstrued that’s the number of white supremacists who are running around the country, and our sense is that’s not the case by an order of magnitude.”

New Zealand’s spy chiefs have said the rising threat of white identity extremism now makes up half of their counter-terrorism work, but Hansen said the majority of the leads were discounted following investigation.

“The gang member with the swastika (tattoo) is a really good example – because this isn’t a white supremacist, particularly if he’s from the Mongrel Mob,” Hansen says.

“That’s just an example of how we get from the 800-odd down.”

Hansen said many individuals spoken to held racist views, but that in itself was not a criminal offence under current legislation.

“Assessments were made as to whether the individual subscribed to a violent extremist ideology and if so, this was subject to further investigation, especially where there was a realistic possibility that an individual may choose to act on their racist beliefs.”

“These investigations were based on threat assessments of the intent and capability of an individual to cause harm. Many individual leads were assessed as keyboard warriors.”

The number of tips phoned into police boomed after the attack that resulted in the death of 51 worshipers at two mosques.

Similar increases were experienced on and after the March 15 anniversary, and when the shooter appeared in court in August, Johnston said.

“The public is an incredibly important source of information for us in this space,” Johnston said.

“The vast proportion of the 2800 (tips) were reported in the immediate weeks and months immediately after the attack.”

“It was a bow wave for us, so you can imagine there’s a lot of information to try and absorb and triage and then allocate out for investigation.”

In a normal week, police might receive one or two tips from concerned Kiwis.

Hansen wasn’t willing to share exactly how many additional staff were reassigned to manage the “massive upsurge”.

“For at least the first month this was managed on a 24/7 basis.”

From August 2019, an emergency management team was supported by the Risk Assessment Unit, Hansen said, leading to the creation of the threat-based National Security Operating Framework and a computer system to manage serious cases long-term.

The increase was a symptom, it seemed, of Kiwis’ determination to out anyone with white supremacist views.

Investigation of the tips boiled down to a far smaller number of suspects, with 39 occurrences identified of individuals ‘inciting racial disharmony’. Inciting racial disharmony is an offence under the Human Rights Act.

The 39 occurrences were often hate speech or the possession of objectionable material, chief among them the video the Christchurch shooter broadcast live over Facebook, and the shooter’s manifesto.

“If you possess, or you share that, you’ve committed an offence, and we’ve charged people with that,” Hansen said.

From the 39 occurrences, 10 legal proceedings were taken.

“Sometimes it’s more appropriate not to arrest them, and to steer them down a path, back into a better view on life. Particularly for youth,” Hansen said.

The numbers tell a story. No group was more determined in supplying tips than Cantabrians.

Over a quarter (236) of the 854 tips came from Canterbury, and 10 of the 39 occurrences of inciting racial disharmony happened in the region.

The police’s southern district, which reaches from Stewart Island in the south, north to the Waitaki River and west to Haast, received 116 tips, three of which were identified as individuals inciting racial disharmony.

Wellington meanwhile received 101 tips, and investigations revealed nine occurrences of inciting racial disharmony.

Auckland City received 31 leads, and registered five occurrences.

stuff.co.nz