9 Dec 2020

Vanuatu links could have put notorious offender on SIS radar

From , 5:03 am on 9 December 2020

A sex offender in New Zealand may have caught the attention of the country's Special Intelligence Service because of his links with and time spent in Vanuatu. 

New Zealand's spy agency is being criticised after a former agent revealed that between 1989 and 1990 they had broken into a house and found evidence a man was raping his daughter, then failed to report it to police leaving her to be sexually abused until she escaped two years later.

When Ronal Van Der Plaat was finally held to account he became known as one of the country's most notorious sex offenders for repeatedly shackling and raping his daughter.

RNZ investigative reporter, Guyon Espiner, who broke the story, found that prior to coming to New Zealand Van Der Plaat had spent a significant amount of time in Vanuatu and had been deported on suspicion of sexually abusing his daughter.

Mr Espiner told Koroi Hawkins he believes it was Van Der Plaat's ties to Vanuatu that put him on the Special Intelligence Service's radar.