28 Nov 2014

Prison sentence for police officer

6:17 pm on 28 November 2014

A former West Auckland police officer has been sentenced to eight years and four months in jail for accepting a cash bribe, corruption and supplying Class A drugs.

Former police officer Peter Pakau

Former police officer Peter Pakau Photo: facebook

Peter Pakau earlier pleaded guilty in the High Court at Auckland to a raft of charges, including manufacturing and supplying methamphetamine, accepting a bribe and illegally accessing the police intelligence computer.

The 37-year-old's offending was committed while he was a duty police officer in Henderson from 2012.

The Crown told the packed out courtroom Pakau wanted acceptance from his peers on entering the police force, and allowed himself to be manipulated by four others.

The offending may have started out as a lapse of judgement but it escalated and consumed him, the Crown said.

Pakau's lawyer, Ron Mansfield, said the officer was described as a "very good street cop" by his colleagues and the New Lynn community he served.

Mr Mansfield called on the New Zealand police to review its procedures to ensure the case did not repeat itself.

Justice Andrews read from the victim impact statement of Detective Inspector Bruce Scott, who said Pakau was well liked by his colleagues and the community he served but his actions had ultimately put them all in danger.

Justice Andrews said Pakau had abused his position of trust in the community and that his actions were "particularly repugnant".

Loud sobs erupted from members of the packed public gallery when he handed down his sentence.

Outside court, Mr Scott said officers had suffered the effects of Pakau's actions.

"Verbal abuse. You go to a job and you're called corrupt because of his behaviour," he said.

Mr Scott said the former Henderson-based officer's offending was disappointing and did not reflect problems in the organisation.

"This was brought to our attention by fellow police officers. They were uncomfortable with the way Pakau was dealing with people and his interactions and what was happening," he said.

"They drew it to our attention and that's why we've had this thorough investigation."

Four other people involved in Pakau's offending are also being sentenced.

Peter Pakau's supporters leave the High Court at Auckland.

Peter Pakau's supporters leave the High Court at Auckland last month. Photo: RNZ / Kim Baker-Wilson

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