GUEST BLOG: Arthur Taylor – How did MSD employ this guy?

Former rogue prison guard Dean Brosnahan is supposed to appear in the Wellington District Court this afternoon at 2.15 pm for a callover of his rape and assault charges. Dean had worked as a senior manager at Rimutaka Prison near Upper Hutt for many years.
He was the poster boy for container cells during Judith Collins time as Corrections Minister.
I’ve asked MSD to investigate why they employed this guy when he had been kicked out of Rimutaka on 3 sexual harassment charges and was awaiting trial on the rape and 4 assault charges…
How was he able to get a plum job at MSD dealing with vulnerable MSD clients….some of whom have been sexually abused previously.??? I’m not going away on this one until I get answers from MSD, who are ducking the issue and have run for cover…


Arthur Taylor is TDBs prisoner rights blogger.


  1. People lie on their CV’s, which tend to be accepted at face value by honest persons. With the MSD, from what I know of their systems, routine employment decisions are made by their service managers. People may mislead, or lie, by commission or omission at job interviews.

    The appointment of MSD service managers is what does need greater scrutiny, a gargantuan task, given that the MSD is such a large nation-wide organisation. With initial complaints, it is Human Resources who swing into action investigating this type of problem, and service managers are discouraged from enlisting independent legal assistance, although this certainly does not stop them from doing so. However, MSD Human Resources do not automatically support their own staff, or try to cover up for them; I have had personal experience of this with incompetent or inept MSD service managers found to be at fault.

    • It ain’t that hard to check CV’s and check if people are properly qualified and work out ‘gaps’ in what people are saying about them. Many fraudsters rely on laziness or stupidity of those checking their references. (Worked for Tarrent and the police firearms check).

      No penalty for identity fraud that helps lead to the gruesome deaths of 115 people in the CTV building and little to zero penalty for the engineering firm that hired him, did not supervise or notice he didn’t know what he was doing or check his qualifications properly.

      Death cheap in NZ, like Pike River, Ports of Auckland and the Fishing industry! But woe behold from police and Worksafe if you fall off a quad bike on a small farm or a scientist on volcanoes!

      • He may in fact have disclosed his marijuana offence, and still been appointed to the job with MSD – or Housing NZ – or whatever name it was dubbed back then. It could have been seen as a fairly socially harmless crime compared to some, and he been given another chance.

        Checking all refs is another ballgame – I didn’t when I worked in management, but depending upon the work involved, I might now – given the time and resources.

    • “Cultural fit “- I think that the MSD is a govt dept with some sort of positive discrimination policy, accelerated training programmes etc; this may be legal or quasi-legal policy, but it may also mean that the best person doesn’t necessarily get a job, and it is tough on deserving successful job candidates who do.

      There are no easy answers. It is reasonable for a govt workplace to reflect their client base, and if, for instance, a public organisation such as a university, or hospital, or police force, doesn’t appear to have enough of a specific ethnicity in jobs, especially in the top jobs, they face accusations of racism, even when there is no evidence of racism.

      • Considering what an interesting bit of waffle that is, it still doesn’t explain how it is that there were DOZENS of appointments made in the years 2009-2017 that fit the “cultural fit” theory… In fact, with a short period of relative calm between 2000-2008, The senior management of MSD have been uniformly tory in attitude, and practice.. It was actually safer to sleep on the streets, and beg for food than trying to get help from MSD.. They became that aggressive and predatory that people were actually afraid of them.. No surprises that a potential rapist and sexual predator gets to work for them.. He’s victimising the same people they are…

  2. From what you’ve written, this guy has or had been charged with sexual assault etc, but not found guilty or convicted of anything, apart from illegally growing marijuana – not the most heinous of crimes.

    Given that we are all innocent until proven guilty, then it can be argued that until, or unless, he is found guilty by a court of law concerning the current accusations, an employer should not be usurping the legal process, it’s very shaky ground.

    • Generally those facing serious criminal charges step down from public office until their case is heard, rape and sexual assault is serious! Justice is slow in NZ so you don’t want people on bail themselves working in prisons with potential victims, I would think!


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