31 Mar 2015

Cooks probes into Bishop and Ponia still ongoing

1:26 pm on 31 March 2015
Aitutaki Lagoon, Cook Islands

Aitutaki Lagoon, Cook Islands Photo: RNZI

The Cook Islands police say they will not leave any stone unturned in the investigation into the Aitutaki MP Teina Bishop.

The Police Commissioner Maara Tetava says the investigation was progressing steadily.

The Cook Islands News reports the investigation has dragged on for nearly two years, starting in July 2013.

Included in the investigation are allegations of bribery and corruption in regard to Mr Bishop's relations with Huanan Fishery during his time as the Minister of Marine Resources.

The commissioner says frustration in the community over the delay is understandable but it was a complex probe which was progressing steadily in consultation with partners in the Cooks and New Zealand.

The paper also reports the Public Service Commissioner Russell Thomas saying his investigation is still not complete regarding the behaviour of the Ministry of Marine Resources secretary Ben Ponia.

Mr Ponia was the focus of a police callout to an Auckland hotel in February, where he was attending an international fishery conference.