6 Dec 2013

PM says he'll fight defamation suit

4:44 pm on 6 December 2013

Prime Minister John Key says he will fight a defamation suit being brought against him by the cameraman at the centre of the so-called teapot tape saga.

John Banks and John Key at the cafe in November 2011.

John Banks and John Key at the cafe in November 2011. Photo: RNZ

In 2011, Mr Key complained to police after Bradley Ambrose taped his conversation with ACT's John Banks during the election campaign.

Mr Key claimed that the conversation at an Auckland cafe had been illegally taped.

Police found that while the recording was unlawful, it wasn't in the public interest to prosecute.

The Attorney-General was intending to seek more than $13,000 from Mr Ambrose, but that plan was dropped in 2012.

At the time, Mr Ambrose said his reputation had suffered, work had dried up and he was looking at options to remedy that damage.

John Key said on Friday he knew the action was pending. "We've been aware that he's likely to file proceedings for defamation and we'll be defending that action."

It is not yet known when the case might be heard.