Naharnet

New Zealand Deputy PM Tells of Dildo Protest Fears

New Zealand's deputy prime minister testified Tuesday that a colleague accused of careless driving feared an attack from a dildo-wielding demonstrator when he navigated his car through a throng of protesters.

Two demonstrators, neither carrying sex toys, were slightly injured during the incident in March last year which resulted in lawmaker Chester Borrows facing charges.

Deputy Prime Minister Paula Bennett was a passenger in Borrows' car as it left the function and told Whanganui District Court a protestor had threatened her in an "aggressive" social media post that morning.

The threat comprised a picture of a rubber device with "Paula B" written on it, captioned "see you shortly bitch".

Bennett said the threat was taken seriously as a few weeks earlier an anti-globalisation protester had hit another minister, Steven Joyce, in the face with a pink dildo during an event marking New Zealand's national day.

"I think I was probably most expecting that they would throw the sex toy at the car," she said.

"I didn't really want a photo, or to be in the news, with this thing either hitting me or the window right next to me."

Television news footage showed the demonstrator who made the threat had turned up with the sex toy at the protest against the Trans-Pacific Partnership free trade deal.

However, he did not appear to be among the group who were impeding Borrows' car as it left the function.

Borrows, a former police officer, said he wanted to protect Bennett, who at the time was social development minister and became deputy prime minister in December last year.

He denied a charge of careless driving causing injury, saying he inched cautiously through the protestors and had not believed they were at risk.

Judge Stephanie Edwards found Borrows not guilty but said he "would be well advised in the future to leave currently serving police officers to manage these situations as they consider appropriate".

Source: Agence France Presse


Copyright © 2012 Naharnet.com. All Rights Reserved. http://www.naharnet.com/stories/en/229758