Serious investigation into hate speech Youtube video targeting Māori

By Te Ao - Māori News

A police investigation is actively underway following complaints about hate speech from a YouTube video targeting Māori.

Police received many complaints about the YouTube video, which has been taken down, and they say they are taking the matter "very seriously." 

Police have been actively investigating the video since the initial complaints were received last week, including conducting a search warrant.

The video featured a masked man who at various times said Māori would be slaughtered in a "civil war," bragged about his killing skills and of training other white supremacists, made threats on marae and homes of Māori, and said he had a plan by "white, brave, patriot men" to "hit" 150 marae, and his wish to take as many Māori out as he could before he "goes."

No place for hate crime

Police Minister Poto Williams says there is absolutely no place for hate crime in New Zealand and the investigation is the subject of a live investigation for police.

"Section 16(2) of the Policing Act clearly states that the police must act independently of any minister of the Crown in relation to the investigation and prosecution of offences.

"As such, I will be leaving the police to get on with their investigation without interference or comment."

"Police have continued to work towards improving staff knowledge, awareness and recording practice regarding the recording of any offence against an individual or group  motivated by a hostility towards an enduring common characteristic such as race, colour, nationality, religion, gender identity, sexual orientation, age or disability."

Tackling discrimination

Since the Christchurch mosque attacks on March 15, 2019, Williams says the police force has improved its recording of hate or prejudice as a contributing factor to crime.

"Part of this includes system enhancements to ensure incidents of hate crime are routinely tracked and monitored, and different police systems are linked to ensure a relevant offence is flagged as a hatecrime across all systems our officers use."

Williams says police continue to work towards tackling harmful behaviour and discrimination through its work developing the Implement Multi-Agency Coordination and Intervention Programme and Te Raranga, The Weave.

"We need to prevent hate and violent extremism before it can take hold in communities."

She says, "This is an effective way to keep New Zealand, and everyone in New Zealand, safe.”

As this is an active investigation, there is no further comment Police can make at this time.