LAWFUEL – Friday, 21 September 2007, 11:46 am
11:39am 21 September 2007
Ladies and gentlemen: Thank you for attending this conference this afternoon. I have invited you here to Police National Headquarters because of the considerable public and media interest in the case of Anan Liu and perceptions about Police’s handling of the investigation.
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I have received full briefings on this inquiry. As is always the case, judgement calls have been made by the investigation team.
My assessment is that the inquiry has proceeded in keeping with best professional practice. It will meet the stringent legal requirements required of us by the laws of this country. We will, of course, fully debrief the investigation and if there are lessons to be learned they will be fully taken on board.
The team working on this case is a highly skilled one, well lead by D/Snr Sgt Simon Scott and comprises officers with considerable experience.
I want to correct some of the misconceptions that have been reported over the course of the last day or two:
There are strict legal requirements around entry to vehicles in terms of admissability of evidence in any court case. Pre-emptive entry to a vehicle would mean that the evidence could be regarded as tainted and potentially lost.
This is the last thing that any inquiry team wants. If there had been any suggestion that someone may have been alive in the vehicle then entry would have been made. The judgement call was that the vehicle should be searched but in accordance with due forensic process.
Why wasn’t Nai Yin Xue stopped from leaving New Zealand with his daughter?
In order for this to have happened a non-removal order would have had to be in place. Such orders are made on application to the Family Court. There is no information to suggest any such order exists.
Neither a Parenting Order not a Protection Order on their own involves alert flags on the customs and immigration computers.
Involvement of Interpol
Interpol Washington is coordinating the search for Mr Xue. On Sunday evening – Sept 19 – interpol Canberra sent a message to interpol offices in New Zealand an Washington alerting them to the incident. A “Red” notice has been fully in place in the US since noon on Tuesday. Interpol Washington has the full support of New Zealand and Australian Police. There are protocols for how interpol alerts are put in place and my advice is that these were followed expeditiously.
Contrary to some belief, NZ Police cannot directly request the assistance of individual policing agencies in other countries and nor can we direct an inquiry once a request has been made. I am aware, however, that excellent cooperation is being received from the relevant policing agencies that will be following up on relevant leads.
Return of the Samurai Sword
The sword had been an exhibit in a court case. While such an object no doubt seems sinister the fact is that Police are not hunting for any weapons in connection with the death of Anan Liu.
Within the last hour the inquiry team has confirmed that the body of the woman discovered in the boot of the car yesterday was that of Anan Liu.
A warrant is in place for Mr Xue’s arrest and we will continue to work assiduously with off-shore agencies to find him.
We extend our full condolences to the extended family of Anan Liu and Qian Xun Xue.
We also want to thank members of the Chinese community in Auckland for their support and assistance in providing very valuable information relating to this case and we encourage anyone who believes they may have other information of interest to make contact with Auckland Police.