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Police defend arrest of Tiki Taane

Published: 10:15AM Tuesday April 12, 2011 Source: ONE News

Police say they are satisfied officers acted professionally and appropriately in arresting Kiwi musician Tiki Taane for disorderly behaviour at his concert in a Tauranga bar at the weekend.

Taane was arrested at his concert at Illuminati on Harington St, Tauranga just after 3.00am on Sunday.

Western Bay Police Acting Area Commander Inspector Karl Wright-St Clair said he has had the opportunity to review the incident that led to the arrest of "a prominent New Zealand musician". 

Wright-St Clair said in a statement that while he appreciated the musician had yet to appear on court, on the face of the facts as he knew them, he was confident his staff acted professionally and appropriately.

"It is a difficult job policing licensed premises in the early hours of the morning when most of the community are home in bed.  On this occasion, I believe police have acted appropriately and I support their actions in arresting the musician," he said.

Police would be making no further comment until after the musician had appeared in the Tauranga District Court on Friday.

Taane released a statement earlier, saying he was arrested and charged after a police officer took offence to his singing of the N.W.A song F**k the police.

"This song is a protest song written by Ice-Cube in 1988, and I have often played and sang along to it at my R18 concerts with no trouble at all," he said.

He said the promoter of the concert was also arrested but was later released uncharged.

"I have had an excellent rapport with the NZ Police and I intend to keep that relationship positive.

"I'm 34 years old and this is my first ever offence, and I feel it is unfortunate that one particular police officer became upset with the N.W.A lyrics I sang that night," he said.

Karl Wright-St Clair said an incident occurred while they were on site at the tavern.

Taane spent the night in the cells and was released the next morning.

He has thanked his family, friends and fans for their support.