In December 2009, the Society’s President, John Mills, on behalf of the Society, issued a call for Government enforcement agencies and legislators to more effectively combat money laundering, bribery, white-collar crime and corruption. Every MP and members of most NZ city councils, were issued with a copy of his statement, which pointed out that the internet and new developments in information technology, now provided crime investigators with very powerful new tools to assist with the detection and solving of white-collar crimes, corruption etc. The statement is quoted in part, below. It is a call to see the upholding and promotion of good community standards in a far broader context than a mere narrow focus on a traditional, conservative vision of what constitutes “moral welfare’.
“In the past 30 years technology has progressed to such an extent that [the identities of] people [living or deceased] can be tracked through DNA research coupled with numerous other technological [eg forensic science] advances. Cold case files have been solved through means that were once impossible. In the same way, the internet has enabled researchers to track the operations of individuals, property companies and plane flight paths, etc. by accessing extensive public electronic records. All of this was not previously possible to the ordinary researcher before the advent of the internet.
“Government officials and agencies are generally not funded to make extensive enquiries using this media, as there needs to be a provable substantial body of evidence and then consensus and approval from authorities higher up; before they will expend the time and effort pursuing such details. Furthermore, enquiries are rarely pursued based merely on suspicions of wrongdoing.
“The Society and its team of researchers have been engaged …. in looking into money trails behind the porn industry. Because we believe that pornography and its well-known associated elements such as prostitution are morally corrupting, we also believe that other forms of corruption may well be linked to it. ‘Where there is smoke there will likely be fire’.”
“These links are almost impossible to hide because all legal businesses and a vast amount of associated activities they engsage in, are by necessity on the public record…. The Society urges government officials to pursue [and stamp out] corruption in the course of their duties.
“New Zealand is known as a soft touch for many illicit activities and numerous loopholes do exist in our legal system and company law that can be exploited. It is considered a most desirable place to carry out such activities as it is far from the troubles of the rest of the world. It is therefore no surprise to us to find many wealthy businessmen and women targeting our fair country for the development of their business empires. They are able to be remoterly run from overseas, controlled via the internet, run from ‘virtual offices’ using electronic signatures and advanced software and by means of authorised agents acting for the overseas based director.
“What are the money sources that fuel morally corrupting activities such as hardcore porn promotion?”
Source: SPCS Newsleter dated December 2009 Issue No. 110
Available on SPCS website
Note: The Society intends to release shortly its extensive research report dealing with the above concerns, to the the relevant Government Ministries and departments now focused on combating money-laundering, corruption and white-collar crime.