Thompson & Clark - who is investigating?
There are currently three investigations under way into state agencies’ use of private investigator company Thompson & Clark (TCIL). But one could be forgiven for being a bit cynical about who is investigating whom and to what standard.
The State Services Commission
Announced in March and still not completed, this is to investigate how MBIE, MSD, DOC, MPI and the EQC have used TCIL. The State Services Commissioner is Peter Hughes, who was CEO of MSD during the time they used TCIL to spy on beneficiaries. The investigation is headed by Doug Martin, who in 2013 was “Crown Manager” of the Christchurch City Council. This was the time period where EQC and the Christchurch City Council were using TCIL to spy on earthquake victims. Second in charge of the investigation is Simon Mount of law firm Russell McVeagh, who are themselves currently under investigation for their drinking, bullying and sexual abuse culture.
On 19 June 2018, SIS director Rebecca Kitteridge announced an investigation into the SIS’s relationship with TCIL after emails emerged that showed close contact between the SIS and TCIL.
On 28 September 2018, the Police decided to hold their own inquiry into their relationship with TCIL (the Police are not included in the State Services Commission’s inquiry), referring to private investigators as “security consultants”. Commissioner Mike Bush said the inquiry would make sure that the cops live up to their “own ethical standards”. What can possibly go wrong?
On 6 July 2018, Nick Thompson resigned his directorship of Thompson & Clark (as well as from other companies jointly held by the couple: Red Bikini, Cyclops, Eyela, Propello).
Meanwhile the MBIE website still lists TCIL as one of their current contractors.