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New Zealand minister quits as email leaks rock election campaign

Published on Aug 30, 2014 12:32 PM

WELLINGTON (AFP) - A campaign of dirty tricks allegations in the lead-up to the New Zealand general election claimed its first victim on Saturday with the resignation of justice minister Judith Collins.

It follows the emergence of an 2011 email alleging that she was linked to attempts to undermine the then director of the Serious Fraud Office (SFO).

Collins was the minister responsible for the SFO at the time. She has denied the allegations and any suggestion of inappropriate behaviour, but said she had no choice but to step down.

"I am restrained in clearing my name while I am still a minister inside cabinet and I believe the right thing to do is to resign as a minister so I am able to clear my name," she said.

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