'Don't be evil': New Zealand tells Google on British backpacker case

New Zealand's justice minister on Wednesday urged Alphabet's Google not to be "evil" after the company failed to abide by a suppression order related to the murder case of a British backpacker.

The killing of 22-year-old Grace Millane last year shocked New Zealand, where serious crimes are relatively rare and its cities and countryside are considered safe.

A New Zealand man accused of the crime pleaded not guilty in January and his name has been suppressed by a court in Auckland.

However, the man's name appeared in Google's "what's trending in New Zealand" email that was sent to thousands of subscribers.

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Grace Millane tragedy
WELLINGTON, NEW ZEALAND - DECEMBER 12: A photo of British backpacker Grace Millane during a vigil at Civic Square on December 12, 2018 in Wellington, New Zealand. The body of 22-year-old Grace Millane was found in a section of bush just near Scenic Drive in West Auckland's Waitakere Ranges on Sunday, following an extensive search for the British tourist. She was seen on Saturday December 1 at the CityLIfe hotel in Auckland. A 26 year old man appeared in Auckland District Court on Monday charged with her murder. The judge granted a suppression order prohibiting the publication of the accused's name. (Photo by Hagen Hopkins/Getty Images)
AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND - JANUARY 16: Police maintain a presence outside the Auckland High Court on January 16, 2019 in Auckland, New Zealand. A 26 year old man is charged with the murder of British backpacker Grace Millane, whose body was found in bush in West Auckland's Waitakere Ranges on 9 December 2018. The man pleaded not guilty and a trial date was set for November 04. Name suppression continues . (Photo by Phil Walter/Getty Images)
AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND - DECEMBER 15: Several hundred people walk up Queen Street in a silent march to remember Grace Millane on December 15, 2018 in Auckland, New Zealand. The body of 22-year-old Grace Millane was found in a section of bush just near Scenic Drive in West Auckland's Waitakere Ranges on Sunday, following an extensive search for the British tourist. She was seen on Saturday December 1 at the CityLIfe hotel in Auckland. A 26 year old man appeared in Auckland District Court last Monday charged with her murder. The judge has granted suppression order prohibiting the publication of the accused's name. (Photo by Phil Walter/Getty Images)
AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND - DECEMBER 15: Several hundred people walk up Queen Street in a silent march to remember Grace Millane on December 15, 2018 in Auckland, New Zealand. The body of 22-year-old Grace Millane was found in a section of bush just near Scenic Drive in West Auckland's Waitakere Ranges on Sunday, following an extensive search for the British tourist. She was seen on Saturday December 1 at the CityLIfe hotel in Auckland. A 26 year old man appeared in Auckland District Court last Monday charged with her murder. The judge has granted suppression order prohibiting the publication of the accused's name. (Photo by Phil Walter/Getty Images)
AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND - DECEMBER 15: Several hundred people walk up Queen Street in a silent march to remember Grace Millane on December 15, 2018 in Auckland, New Zealand. The body of 22-year-old Grace Millane was found in a section of bush just near Scenic Drive in West Auckland's Waitakere Ranges on Sunday, following an extensive search for the British tourist. She was seen on Saturday December 1 at the CityLIfe hotel in Auckland. A 26 year old man appeared in Auckland District Court last Monday charged with her murder. The judge has granted suppression order prohibiting the publication of the accused's name. (Photo by Phil Walter/Getty Images)
AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND - DECEMBER 15: Tributes are pictured outside the CityLife Hotel on Queen Street on December 15, 2018 in Auckland, New Zealand. The body of 22-year-old Grace Millane was found in a section of bush just near Scenic Drive in West Auckland's Waitakere Ranges on Sunday, following an extensive search for the British tourist. She was seen on Saturday December 1 at the CityLIfe hotel in Auckland. A 26 year old man appeared in Auckland District Court last Monday charged with her murder. The judge has granted suppression order prohibiting the publication of the accused's name. (Photo by Phil Walter/Getty Images)
AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND - DECEMBER 15: Several hundred people walk up Queen Street in a silent march to remember Grace Millane on December 15, 2018 in Auckland, New Zealand. The body of 22-year-old Grace Millane was found in a section of bush just near Scenic Drive in West Auckland's Waitakere Ranges on Sunday, following an extensive search for the British tourist. She was seen on Saturday December 1 at the CityLIfe hotel in Auckland. A 26 year old man appeared in Auckland District Court last Monday charged with her murder. The judge has granted suppression order prohibiting the publication of the accused's name. (Photo by Phil Walter/Getty Images)
AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND - DECEMBER 15: Several hundred people walk up Queen Street in a silent march to remember Grace Millane on December 15, 2018 in Auckland, New Zealand. The body of 22-year-old Grace Millane was found in a section of bush just near Scenic Drive in West Auckland's Waitakere Ranges on Sunday, following an extensive search for the British tourist. She was seen on Saturday December 1 at the CityLIfe hotel in Auckland. A 26 year old man appeared in Auckland District Court last Monday charged with her murder. The judge has granted suppression order prohibiting the publication of the accused's name. (Photo by Phil Walter/Getty Images)
AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND - DECEMBER 15: Several hundred people walk up Queen Street in a silent march to remember Grace Millane on December 15, 2018 in Auckland, New Zealand. The body of 22-year-old Grace Millane was found in a section of bush just near Scenic Drive in West Auckland's Waitakere Ranges on Sunday, following an extensive search for the British tourist. She was seen on Saturday December 1 at the CityLIfe hotel in Auckland. A 26 year old man appeared in Auckland District Court last Monday charged with her murder. The judge has granted suppression order prohibiting the publication of the accused's name. (Photo by Phil Walter/Getty Images)
WELLINGTON, NEW ZEALAND - DECEMBER 12: Members of the public look on during a vigil for British backpacker Grace Millane at Civic Square on December 12, 2018 in Wellington, New Zealand. The body of 22-year-old Grace Millane was found in a section of bush just near Scenic Drive in West Auckland's Waitakere Ranges on Sunday, following an extensive search for the British tourist. She was seen on Saturday December 1 at the CityLIfe hotel in Auckland. A 26 year old man appeared in Auckland District Court on Monday charged with her murder. The judge granted a suppression order prohibiting the publication of the accused's name. (Photo by Hagen Hopkins/Getty Images)
WELLINGTON, NEW ZEALAND - DECEMBER 12: Members of the public look on during a vigil for British backpacker Grace Millane at Civic Square on December 12, 2018 in Wellington, New Zealand. The body of 22-year-old Grace Millane was found in a section of bush just near Scenic Drive in West Auckland's Waitakere Ranges on Sunday, following an extensive search for the British tourist. She was seen on Saturday December 1 at the CityLIfe hotel in Auckland. A 26 year old man appeared in Auckland District Court on Monday charged with her murder. The judge granted a suppression order prohibiting the publication of the accused's name. (Photo by Hagen Hopkins/Getty Images)
WELLINGTON, NEW ZEALAND - DECEMBER 12: Kirsten Te Rito sings 'Make You Feel My Love' during a vigil for British backpacker Grace Millane at Civic Square on December 12, 2018 in Wellington, New Zealand. The body of 22-year-old Grace Millane was found in a section of bush just near Scenic Drive in West Auckland's Waitakere Ranges on Sunday, following an extensive search for the British tourist. She was seen on Saturday December 1 at the CityLIfe hotel in Auckland. A 26 year old man appeared in Auckland District Court on Monday charged with her murder. The judge granted a suppression order prohibiting the publication of the accused's name. (Photo by Hagen Hopkins/Getty Images)
A woman holds candles during a vigil for murdered British backpacker Grace Millane at Civic Square Park in Wellington on December 12, 2018. - Vigils were held around New Zealand for murdered Millane, as her father thanked the South Pacific nation for an "outpouring of love" towards his slain daughter. (Photo by Marty MELVILLE / AFP) (Photo credit should read MARTY MELVILLE/AFP/Getty Images)
WELLINGTON, NEW ZEALAND - DECEMBER 12: A candle is placed next to a photo of British backpacker Grace Millane during a vigil at Civic Square on December 12, 2018 in Wellington, New Zealand. The body of 22-year-old Grace Millane was found in a section of bush just near Scenic Drive in West Auckland's Waitakere Ranges on Sunday, following an extensive search for the British tourist. She was seen on Saturday December 1 at the CityLIfe hotel in Auckland. A 26 year old man appeared in Auckland District Court on Monday charged with her murder. The judge granted a suppression order prohibiting the publication of the accused's name. (Photo by Hagen Hopkins/Getty Images)
Three women sit under a photo of murdered British backpacker Grace Millane during a vigil at Civic Square Park in Wellington on December 12, 2018. - Vigils were held around New Zealand for murdered Millane, as her father thanked the South Pacific nation for an "outpouring of love" towards his slain daughter. (Photo by Marty MELVILLE / AFP) (Photo credit should read MARTY MELVILLE/AFP/Getty Images)
WELLINGTON, NEW ZEALAND - DECEMBER 12: Candles and flowers from members of the public surround a photo of British backpacker Grace Millane during a vigil at Civic Square on December 12, 2018 in Wellington, New Zealand. The body of 22-year-old Grace Millane was found in a section of bush just near Scenic Drive in West Auckland's Waitakere Ranges on Sunday, following an extensive search for the British tourist. She was seen on Saturday December 1 at the CityLIfe hotel in Auckland. A 26 year old man appeared in Auckland District Court on Monday charged with her murder. The judge granted a suppression order prohibiting the publication of the accused's name. (Photo by Hagen Hopkins/Getty Images)
A oman kneels next to candles and flowers near a photo of murdered British backpacker Grace Millane during the vigil for murdered British backpacker Grace Millane at Civic Square Park in Wellington on December 12, 2018. - Vigils were held around New Zealand for murdered Millane, as her father thanked the South Pacific nation for an "outpouring of love" towards his slain daughter. (Photo by Marty MELVILLE / AFP) (Photo credit should read MARTY MELVILLE/AFP/Getty Images)
WELLINGTON, NEW ZEALAND - DECEMBER 12: Candles and flowers from members of the public surround a photo of British backpacker Grace Millane during a vigil at Civic Square on December 12, 2018 in Wellington, New Zealand. The body of 22-year-old Grace Millane was found in a section of bush just near Scenic Drive in West Auckland's Waitakere Ranges on Sunday, following an extensive search for the British tourist. She was seen on Saturday December 1 at the CityLIfe hotel in Auckland. A 26 year old man appeared in Auckland District Court on Monday charged with her murder. The judge granted a suppression order prohibiting the publication of the accused's name. (Photo by Hagen Hopkins/Getty Images)
WELLINGTON, NEW ZEALAND - DECEMBER 12: Members of the public pay their respects during a vigil for British backpacker Grace Millane at Civic Square on December 12, 2018 in Wellington, New Zealand. The body of 22-year-old Grace Millane was found in a section of bush just near Scenic Drive in West Auckland's Waitakere Ranges on Sunday, following an extensive search for the British tourist. She was seen on Saturday December 1 at the CityLIfe hotel in Auckland. A 26 year old man appeared in Auckland District Court on Monday charged with her murder. The judge granted a suppression order prohibiting the publication of the accused's name. (Photo by Hagen Hopkins/Getty Images)
AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND - DECEMBER 12: People gather to honour Grace Millane in Federal St on December 12, 2018 in Auckland, New Zealand. The body of 22-year-old Grace Millane was found in a section of bush just near Scenic Drive in West Auckland's Waitakere Ranges on Sunday, following an extensive search for the British tourist. She was seen on Saturday December 1 at the CityLIfe hotel in Auckland. A 26 year old man appeared in Auckland District Court on Monday charged with her murder. The judge granted a suppression order prohibiting the publication of the accused's name. (Photo by Fiona Goodall/Getty Images)
AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND - DECEMBER 12: People gather to honour Grace Millane in St Patricks Square on December 12, 2018 in Auckland, New Zealand. The body of 22-year-old Grace Millane was found in a section of bush just near Scenic Drive in West Auckland's Waitakere Ranges on Sunday, following an extensive search for the British tourist. She was seen on Saturday December 1 at the CityLIfe hotel in Auckland. A 26 year old man appeared in Auckland District Court on Monday charged with her murder. The judge granted a suppression order prohibiting the publication of the accused's name. (Photo by Fiona Goodall/Getty Images)
AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND - DECEMBER 12: Auckland Mayor Phil Goff speaks to those gathered to honour Grace Millane in St Patricks Square on December 12, 2018 in Auckland, New Zealand. The body of 22-year-old Grace Millane was found in a section of bush just near Scenic Drive in West Auckland's Waitakere Ranges on Sunday, following an extensive search for the British tourist. She was seen on Saturday December 1 at the CityLIfe hotel in Auckland. A 26 year old man appeared in Auckland District Court on Monday charged with her murder. The judge granted a suppression order prohibiting the publication of the accused's name. (Photo by Fiona Goodall/Getty Images)
AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND - DECEMBER 12: People gather to honour Grace Millane in St Patricks Square on December 12, 2018 in Auckland, New Zealand. The body of 22-year-old Grace Millane was found in a section of bush just near Scenic Drive in West Auckland's Waitakere Ranges on Sunday, following an extensive search for the British tourist. She was seen on Saturday December 1 at the CityLIfe hotel in Auckland. A 26 year old man appeared in Auckland District Court on Monday charged with her murder. The judge granted a suppression order prohibiting the publication of the accused's name. (Photo by Fiona Goodall/Getty Images)
AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND - DECEMBER 11: The floral tributes at the Titirangi roundabout grow larger for Grace Millane on December 11, 2018 in Auckland, New Zealand. The body of 22-year-old Grace Millane was found in a section of bush just near Scenic Drive in West Auckland's Waitakere Ranges on Sunday, following an extensive search for the British tourist. She was seen on Saturday December 1 at the CityLIfe hotel in Auckland. A 26 year old man appeared in Auckland District Court yesterday morning charged with her murder. The judge today granted suppression order prohibiting the publication of the accused's name. (Photo by Fiona Goodall/Getty Images)
AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND - DECEMBER 11: The floral tributes at the Titirangi roundabout grow larger for Grace Millane on December 11, 2018 in Auckland, New Zealand. The body of 22-year-old Grace Millane was found in a section of bush just near Scenic Drive in West Auckland's Waitakere Ranges on Sunday, following an extensive search for the British tourist. She was seen on Saturday December 1 at the CityLIfe hotel in Auckland. A 26 year old man appeared in Auckland District Court yesterday morning charged with her murder. The judge today granted suppression order prohibiting the publication of the accused's name. (Photo by Fiona Goodall/Getty Images)
AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND - DECEMBER 10: Flowers are left as a tribute to Grace Millane on December 10, 2018 in Auckland, New Zealand. The body of 22-year-old Grace Millane was found in a section of bush just near Scenic Drive in West Auckland's Waitakere Ranges on Sunday, following an extensive search for the British tourist. She was seen on Saturday December 1 at the CityLIfe hotel in Auckland. A 26 year old man appeared in Auckland District Court this morning charged with her murder. The judge today granted suppression order prohibiting the publication of the accused's name. (Photo by Fiona Goodall/Getty Images)
AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND - DECEMBER 09: The scene where the body of British tourist Grace Millane has been found by New Zealand police in the Waitakere Ranges on December 09, 2018 in Auckland, New Zealand. Police have been investigating the disappearance of 22-year-old British woman Grace Millane after she was last seen on Saturday December 1 in Auckland. (Photo by Hannah Peters/Getty Images)
AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND - DECEMBER 09: The scene where the body of British tourist Grace Millane has been found by New Zealand police in the Waitakere Ranges on December 09, 2018 in Auckland, New Zealand. Police have been investigating the disappearance of 22-year-old British woman Grace Millane after she was last seen on Saturday December 1 in Auckland. (Photo by Hannah Peters/Getty Images)
AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND - DECEMBER 07: Detective Inspector Scott Beard speaks to the media as a photo of missing British woman Grace Millane is displayed on December 07, 2018 in Auckland, New Zealand. Police are investigating the disappearance of 22-year-old British woman Grace Millane after last been seen on Saturday December 1 in Auckland. (Photo by Hannah Peters/Getty Images)
AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND - DECEMBER 07: Father of missing British woman Grace Millane, David Millane reads a statement on on December 07, 2018 in Auckland, New Zealand. Police are investigating the disappearance of 22-year-old British woman Grace Millane after last been seen on Saturday December 1 in Auckland. (Photo by Hannah Peters/Getty Images)
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Despite assurances from Google in meetings with government officials, the issue remains unresolved, said Justice Minister Andrew Little.

"My message to Google is, don't be evil. Do the right thing," Little said in a video posted on his Twitter account, referring to the company's former motto "don't be evil".

"We've had a situation where, in a very important trial - the Grace Millane case - a newspaper, helped by Google, has published information that the judge said was suppressed," Little said.

"That's wrong and I've been a bit frustrated by Google not working out what the problem is and what they can do to prevent this from happening again," he added.

A Google representative said the company respects New Zealand law and understands the sensitivity around this issue.

"When we receive valid court orders, including suppression orders, we review and respond appropriately," the representative said in an emailed statement to Reuters.

Millane, who was traveling after finishing university, went missing in Auckland, New Zealand's largest city, on Dec. 1.

Police found her body in a bush area just a few meters from a scenic drive in Auckland's Waitakere Ranges.

Disappointed by Google's response

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern is leading a global campaign to stop social media like Facebook, Google and others from being used to promote terrorism and violent extremism after a mass shooting in Christchurch in March.

Ardern said she was disappointed by Google's response in the Millane case.

"Now we need to consider what the next steps will be for NZ," Ardern told reporters on Wednesday, according to broadcaster Newshub.

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