This is a follow-up to @exposethecriminal's post about the late NZ regional councillor Awanui Black (d. 2016) and the allegations of his widow Anihera Zhou Black that he was a sexual predator, assaulted children and watched child porn, and was member of a pedophile ring of high ranking perps.
The NZ Herald describes Black as
'a respected community leader in the Bay of Plenty with an eye on Parliament as a representative of the Maori Party'
Today, the executive Chief of a Maori iwi (tribal entity) announced that they would pay 11,000 NZD (about 7,500 USD)
reward for information about allegations a paedophile ring is operating in the city.
The chief executive Paora Stanley told the Bay of Plenty Times that he and his iwi were desperate to find out if these allegations were true.
Stanley said he got approval from the trust's chairman to put up a $10,000 reward and he had added another $1000 from his own pocket.
"The claims that there is a child sex ring in Tauranga are extremely serious accusations and we are deeply concerned if there is, in fact, a paedophile ring in our city," he said.
Stanley said the reward was being put up for people to come forward with any evidence that led to the conviction of anyone involved in the alleged child abuse ring.
As of today (July 11), there isn't a formal investigation of the claims, although the police have talked to Black's widow. Meanwhile, Zhou Black told the NZ Herald more details about her life with the deceased councillor.
According to her
Black had formed a relationship - as an adult - with one of the many children who had passed through their home.
"Awa was grooming," she says. "You know the grooming starts young."
During their marriage, her husband got involved in local politics and also represented Māori interests:
Black served as a commissioner at the Māori Language Commission, lecturer at Te Wānanga o Raukawa and helped write the first monolingual Māori language dictionary. Later, Black become the regional chairman for the iwi [tribe] leaders' group, a treaty negotiator for Te Au Maaro o Ngāti Pūkenga and a regional councillor.
Six years ago, in 2012, Zhou Black realized that her husband had a second, a secret life, visiting prostitutes, and later having affairs with other women as well. But worse, he admitted that he had watched child porn. Also, she was worried about his addiction to alcolhol, which seems to have started around the turn of the millennium.
She finally left him some time later. He died in 2016 of 'organ failure', but his widow regarded it as 'suicide by alcolhol', drinking himself to death since he had realized 'he knew his multiple lives were about to merge'.
9,000 people attended his funeral, and it was on that day that friends told her that he had been sexually assaulted as a boy. And a man told her in detail how he had been abused by Black when he was only eight years old.
As for other victims, Zhou Black won't discuss detail. She says victims do not yet feel comfortable and supported about coming forward.
Therefore I think it's a little naive to suppose when you offer a reward for coming forward, victims will come forward.
Especially since Zhou Black said that at least one police officer was involved in the pedophile ring, and also high-ranking people. Survivors might need months - or even years - to come forward (or maybe never will).
I'd like to know what is currently happening behind the scenes - do survivors receive threats in order to silence them?