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coldfront
16-09-2012, 10:19 AM
Exactly what the title says.

Come across an interesting one where by a former employee had a search warrent issued on them by former employer who happens to be a Justice of the Peace as well. It was part of an ongoing employment dispute or which employee was ordered to return all items issued with or without corporate logo including items purchased by the employee that carried the corporate logo.

Due to dispute a third party became involved to negotiate return of what was required, however employer who is a JP got a warrent issued. Nek minut police raid on house!

Now employee is fighting to get return of several personal items including paperwork relating to dispute! Top it off employee got arrested for obstuction but later released for cooperating with police, during the arrest in the person house I might add the employee sustained injury from aggressive police officer witnessed by young child. Events witnessed believe it or not on a webcam! unfortunatly not recorded.

According to the police it is theft! The employee had unwittingly committed an act of theft or was it just an overzealous employer using judicial powers issued as a JP?

Metla
16-09-2012, 10:51 AM
How dumb is a person to steal from work?

How dumb is a person to steal from a JP?

How dumb is a person to try and stall the process of returning stolen goods to a JP?

Of course he called the police, and surprise surprise, The word of a JP is plenty for the police to act upon.

Though there is no way in hell a JP should be making judgement calls and signing search warrants for an issue he is involved with, if thats what happened.

mikebartnz
16-09-2012, 01:05 PM
It was part of an ongoing employment dispute or which employee was ordered to return all items issued with or without corporate logo including items purchased by the employee that carried the corporate logo.
Not really enough info but the employer has absolutely not right to get back anything the employee has purchased and it does sound like the employer should be struck off as a JP.

fred_fish
16-09-2012, 01:12 PM
Cool story bro.
Though I suspect you only have half of it.
Yes there are very strict rules about JP's conflicts of interest.
No, anything he bought (legally, from someone authorised to sell it) cannot belong to the employer.

Mirddes
16-09-2012, 01:57 PM
sounds like theft by policy enforcement officers.

coldfront
16-09-2012, 02:17 PM
Not really enough info but the employer has absolutely not right to get back anything the employee has purchased and it does sound like the employer should be struck off as a JP.

You are about the only one that has figured that bit out.

They did not Steal anything it was issued by the employer on behalf of the corporation involved. Yes it is half of it and for obvious legal reason the corporate and employer can not be identified at this stage.

Items were issued they we not removed or taken they were issued to the person to be retained at home but there is also a question over what would be defined as issued with expectation to return or issued and must be returned.

Items were clothing that is all nothing of dramatic high value. Lot of the matter was actually petty! Becomes muddier when the employer decides to change the list of items given to the Police from an earlier list, then decides to further release the return of certain items excluding those purchased by the employee.

Yet apparently this can be done on anyone! So next time you lend a mate your screwdriver or lawnmower and they dont return it when you ask you can apparently get a search warrant under section 198, summary proceedings Act 1957! But wait you really need to be a JP to be able to convince a court to issue such a warrant.

fred_fish
16-09-2012, 03:20 PM
Yep, sounds petty. And yes, search warrants are available to us all, not just the po-lice.
You are also quite correct in the assumption that joe public, rather than a JP, would be told to sod off and stop wasting police time.
Go on, it's the anonymous internet - name & shame ... :)

pctek
16-09-2012, 04:11 PM
employee was ordered to return all items including items purchased by the employee that carried the corporate logo.

employee got arrested for obstuction

Why would an employee buy some company logo thing in the first place?

They do that, if you don't let them in.

KarameaDave
16-09-2012, 04:22 PM
No theft involved in my view, sounds like the JP is the one who should be charged, with wasting police time.

inphinity
16-09-2012, 04:55 PM
They did not Steal anything it was issued by the employer on behalf of the corporation involved.

Issued != given. A company item issued to an employee, does not become the employees property. Failure to return it on request is theft.

Tukapa
16-09-2012, 11:15 PM
They did not Steal anything it was issued by the employer on behalf of the corporation involved. Items were issued they we not removed or taken they were issued to the person to be retained at home but there is also a question over what would be defined as issued with expectation to return or issued and must be returned. Items were clothing that is all nothing of dramatic high value. Lot of the matter was actually petty!

Sounds like theft to me - gear belonged to the employer/corporation - should be returned to the employer/corporation when requested.


Yet apparently this can be done on anyone! So next time you lend a mate your screwdriver or lawnmower and they dont return it when you ask you can apparently get a search warrant under section 198, summary proceedings Act 1957! But wait you really need to be a JP to be able to convince a court to issue such a warrant.

Also sounds like theft to me - although I would be more worried about the sort of people you have as mates.


How dumb is a person to steal from work?

How dumb is a person to steal from a JP?

How dumb is a person to try and stall the process of returning stolen goods to a JP?

Of course he called the police, and surprise surprise, The word of a JP is plenty for the police to act upon.

Though there is no way in hell a JP should be making judgement calls and signing search warrants for an issue he is involved with, if thats what happened.

This - I agree with Metla that a JP should not be involved in signing warrants where there is a conflict of interest.

Crimes Act 1961
s219 Theft or stealing

(1) Theft or stealing is the act of,—

(a) dishonestly and without claim of right, taking any property with intent to deprive any owner permanently of that property or of any interest in that property; or

(b) dishonestly and without claim of right, using or dealing with any property with intent to deprive any owner permanently of that property or of any interest in that property after obtaining possession of, or control over, the property in whatever manner.

(2) An intent to deprive any owner permanently of property includes an intent to deal with property in such a manner that—

(a) the property cannot be returned to any owner in the same condition; or

(b) any owner is likely to be permanently deprived of the property or of any interest in the property.

(3) In this section, taking does not include obtaining ownership or possession of, or control over, any property with the consent of the person from whom it is obtained, whether or not consent is obtained by deception.

(4) For tangible property, theft is committed by a taking when the offender moves the property or causes it to be moved.

Sure sounds like this scenario fits squarely under s219(1)(b).

Somehow I think we have only been told what it suits the OP to tell us.

coldfront
17-09-2012, 12:16 AM
Somehow I think we have only been told what it suits the OP to tell us.

Probably because I was looking at where the results would be. As I said its a very longwinded and complex issue. As the third party asked to resolve the dispute its a blardy mess ! Blame lies on both sides neither were backing down however someone used their authority over the other. Probably the cause of why it reached that stand off? What is dissapointing is to see how things can escalate to this stage to someone I know has respect for the law and found themselves falling over on it.

The person concerned believed that they would be reinstated through an internal procedure and be able to transfer to another division however this failed to happen hence my involvement, things just escalated faster than I could resolve the matter because of the employers status is my view.

Would your bog standard employer go to this length? answer to that is probably not myself I would have done what many employers have done in the past and bonded the gear! ie you dont return you pay $xxxx but some go on power trips now that parts scarey. The ERA is going to have a field day with this one!

Bobh
17-09-2012, 12:32 AM
You could compare this to the situation for members of the Armed Forces or the Police even. When they initially enlist they are issued with uniform clothing, badges, etc. These items are kept in your care at your home. In the Armed Forces you are paid a clothing allowance to replace worn out uniform items. You are therefore required to purchase replacement uniform items. On discharge you are required to return certain items of uniform, some items you are allowed to keep.

Metla
17-09-2012, 12:42 AM
It goes far beyond that, Its not just the refusal to hand back the items but the potential harm that could be done with them,Any correspondence sent out with the company header on it could lead to massive problems, If it were my company and a disgruntled ex-employee was holding that gear I'd also raise hell about it. if they no longer work there then they have no reason to try and keep it.

The simple truth of the matter is when told to return the items, they should have done so. The fact they held some fantasy view on their situation is of zero relevancy.

Metla
17-09-2012, 12:45 AM
The lesson to be learned here, There are plenty of people who you cant **** with, they **** back harder.

Myth
17-09-2012, 08:31 AM
Anything issued by the employer is still the property of the employer, even when the role is terminated - personal protective equipment as an example. Most contracts these days stipulate this. If there was no contract; then I guess the employee has not much to go on

Anything bought by the employee is the property of the employee. Hopefully the employee kept any records/receipts from said sale. If it was training material, and the employer wants it back; then the employer should reimburse the employee the amount paid. Unless there is a possible future conflict of interest (i.e the employee wants to start their own business using the material they bought - highly unethical) then why would the employee not give it back?

As others have said... there is more to this than what we are being told

Regards the person being a JP... doesn't matter. The former employee may just have well been the government - but they are not allowed to use their position to influence any legal conflict (doesn't mean it doesn't happen however). If they are even suspected of influencing a legal conflict, the penalties are quite harsh

coldfront
17-09-2012, 08:48 AM
You could compare this to the situation for members of the Armed Forces or the Police even. When they initially enlist they are issued with uniform clothing, badges, etc. These items are kept in your care at your home. In the Armed Forces you are paid a clothing allowance to replace worn out uniform items. You are therefore required to purchase replacement uniform items. On discharge you are required to return certain items of uniform, some items you are allowed to keep.

General reply here

This is pretty much the situation but would expect an escalation to the point of going to the extreme of a search warrant to a persons house where they were not deliberatly concealing the items? It is also extreme to assume company espionage thus was not taking place.

As I said it is not a simple matter either heavy handed tactics which are destroying someones credability by exploiting knowledge of the law.

Does make you think is this a soft target for the Police to deal with and make a situation worse than it was or would we all be better off stealing because the Police seem unable to actually catch deliberate theft just unwitting victims of circumstance?

inphinity
17-09-2012, 10:04 AM
just unwitting victims of circumstance?

Ignorance, willful or not, is not an excuse for theft (or any other criminal behaviour).

coldfront
17-09-2012, 11:57 AM
Ignorance, willful or not, is not an excuse for theft (or any other criminal behaviour).

See my reply above!

Does the phrase "Innocent until proven guilty" fit into this? The situation seems to fall quite well into the wasting of Police Time on a trivial employment issue.

Proof of ownerhip etc etc seems to be the easy get out of making matter more complex by getting the police involved. Recent similer situation of King.com comes to mind!!!!

inphinity
17-09-2012, 12:20 PM
See my reply above!

Does the phrase "Innocent until proven guilty" fit into this? The situation seems to fall quite well into the wasting of Police Time on a trivial employment issue.

Proof of ownerhip etc etc seems to be the easy get out of making matter more complex by getting the police involved. Recent similer situation of King.com comes to mind!!!!

If the information you've posted is accurate, then i can only assume your personal involvement with person(s) in this situation are skewing your view.

And I'm guessing you meant Kim Dotcom.

R2x1
17-09-2012, 06:39 PM
When is theft theft?
Apparently whenever anything moves, it is theft (according to Urpple).