News that a prison inmate witness had retracted evidence against Scott Watson showed the danger of using secret cell-mate witnesses, Green Party Police Spokesperson Keith Locke MP said today.
“These witnesses often have something to gain personally from helping the police convict their former cell-mates. Early parole is the most obvious thing,” Mr Locke said.
“Controversy has surrounded the use of such witnesses in a string of trials, including those against Ross Appelgren, David Tamihere, Neville Walker and Renee Chignell.
“The police should be discouraged from using such doubtful testimony, which only puts the justice system into disrepute.
“The Greens support a thorough investigation into the perjury admitted by the secret witness in the Watson trial.”