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  • Justice Department "fixes" trial of court employee

    Justice Department "fixes" trial of court employee


    Last week, on a quiet Monday afternoon in the Porirua District Court, Judge Arthur Tompkins dealt with a case that up until recently would have been put to a jury to decide whether or not the Crown had proven its case. Now days, an offence has to attract a penalty of 2 or more years imprisonment before an accused is entitled to request a jury trial. Judge Tompkins was called in from Hamilton to preside over the trial because of the difficulty in finding a Wellington judge who did not know ...
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  • Wellington foodbank investigated for fraud

    Wellington foodbank investigated for fraud

    A Wellington foodbank is being investigated for fraud, after it was deemed to be involved in "serious wrongdoing".
    The Wellington Foodbank Service - not associated with the one run by the Wellington City Mission - has also now been stripped of its charitable status, with the Department of Internal Affairs advising major donors not to hand over more money.

    The bulk of existing donations appear to be have disappeared, as liquidators find the charity's bank accounts emptied and almost...
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  • Crossfire victim seeking Crown compensation

    Crossfire victim seeking Crown compensation



    A man injured in a police shooting that killed teen courier driver Halatau Naitoko is suing the Crown for compensation.
    Lawyers for Richard Neville, who was hit by crossfire after a dramatic police pursuit of gunman Stephen McDonald came to a tragic end in January 2009, filed the breach of civil rights claim in the High Court at Auckland late last month.

    Neville was driving when he was confronted by methamphetamine-fuelled McDonald, who had pointed a gun at bystanders,...
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  • Pilot impersonator's appeal dismissed

    Pilot impersonator's appeal dismissed



    A repeat pilot impersonator sentenced to 300 hours' community work for flying a plane without a license has had an appeal against his sentence dismissed.

    Brian Hunter, 54, appeared in the Napier District Court last month where he pleaded guilty to one charge of operating an aircraft without the required documentation.
    The court heard Hunter had expressed an interest in purchasing a plane from a seller in Mahia in September 2012 before travelling to meet him and taking...
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  • Pensioners left broke by ex-cop

    Pensioners left broke by ex-cop

    A former high-ranking New Zealand cop has avoided arrest from the comfort of his home in Australia as pensioners are kicked out of retirement units owned by his failed company. Former police inspector Gary William Campbell faces three active charges brought under the Retirement Villages Act 2003 regarding various failures in relation to a Christchurch retirement village his company owned. The company owes millions of dollars and according to the Companies Office is no longer trading. Campbel...
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  • Fight over fluoridation

    Fight over fluoridation

    The war over fluoride in our drinking water is heating up, with a crucial court decision due and lobby groups upping the ante against health officials.

    A judge is expected to rule this week on whether South Taranaki District Council had the authority to introduce fluoride to two of its water systems which could remove the power of local authorities around the country to add nutrients to water supplies.

    The NZ Health Trust, which claims fluoride is a form of mass...
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  • Shark finning ban to be in force sooner

    Shark finning ban to be in force sooner


    The government has agreed to a tighter timeframe for the banning of shark finning in New Zealand waters.
    Conservation Minister Nick Smith and Primary Industries Minister Nathan Guy confirmed on Thursday the government's plan to ban the controversial practice, which has been descibed as a national disgrace. The ban will mean sharks won't be able to be caught, killed and have their fins sliced off before the rest of the body is thrown back into the water. It's already illegal to ...
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  • Police decision not to prosecute John Banks leads to IPCA complaint

    Police decision not to prosecute John Banks leads to IPCA complaint

    Wellington author Roger Brookings has filed an Independent Police Complaints Authority (IPCA) complaint against the Police for failing to prosecute John Banks after retired accountant Graham Mc Cready took a private prosecution leading to Mr Banks being committed to trial for electoral fraud.
    Mr Brookings also raises the issue of obstruction of justice by the Police for blocking access to Police files, particularly Banks' police statement on the spurious grounds of privacy when in fa...
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  • Labour backs review commission for miscarriages of justice

    Labour backs review commission for miscarriages of justice

    The Government is being called on to set-up a an independent authority to look into claims of miscarriages of justice.
    Labour's calling for additional safety nets to help deal with such claims.

    Justice spokesman Andrew Little is echoing calls from the Dean of the University of Canterbury law school for an independent body to handle such claims, which are currently managed by the Ministry of Justice.

    Mr Little says cases such as that of Arthur Allan Thomas or Mark...
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  • Eion Castles guilty of professional misconduct

    Eion Castles guilty of professional misconduct

    A lawyer accused of overcharging a former golfing buddy by almost $600,000 has been found guilty of professional misconduct by the Lawyers and Conveyancers Disciplinary Tribunal. Eion Castles faced the disciplinary tribunal after he charged the man, with whom he played golf at Titirangi Golf Club, $1,030,000 - well above the $436,000 cost assessors estimated his work would have cost to help sort out legal problems created by the client's leaky Remuera home. In a recently released decision,...
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  • Judge Goddard refuses to answer MPs' questions
    by admin
    The former New Zealand judge who headed a UK inquiry into child sexual abuse has said she will not appear before British MPs to answer questions about her time in charge. Dame Lowell Goddard said for her to be summoned would compromise the inquiry's "independence and integrity". She also hit out at "malicious, defamatory attacks" by the British media and said she was disappointed the government had not defended her. British MPs have asked the former head of the child sex abuse inquiry to expl...
    11-11-2016, 11:47 AM
  • Judge Lowell Goddard's epic fail
    by admin
    Dame Lowell Goddard, the New Zealand judge who resigned last week as chair of the 100 million (N$183.5m) Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA), did not leave her post voluntarily but was effectively fired. Dame Lowell, appointed by then-Home Secretary Theresa May just over a year ago, had already lost the confidence of senior staff and members of the inquiry panel, according to two well-placed legal sources. The Home Office has denied she was sacked, according to reports. After she ...
    09-08-2016, 10:07 AM
  • Sir Ngatata Love's lawyer claims agreement had no impact on Trust
    by admin
    Sir Ngatata Love's lawyer Colin Carruthers QC says the Serious Fraud Office (SFO) theory against his client is wrong, with a key agreement placing no financial cost on the Wellington Tenths Trust. The former leading Treaty of Waitangi negotiator and academic is on trial in the High Court at Wellington, accused of obtaining funds by deception, or alternatively of obtaining a secret commission.The charges relate to allegations that Love showed favour to Auckland property developer Redwood, and ...
    05-08-2016, 01:44 PM
  • Transport boss pleads guilty to corruption charges
    by admin
    The Serious Fraud Office says the guilty plea yesterday by an Auckland Council manager to corruption charges shows the dangers in not questioning a culture of gratuities. Barrie Kenneth James George, 69, this morning at the High Court at Auckland pleaded guilty to two charges of accepting bribes as a public official when he took gifts worth $103,580 between 2005 and 2012. The gifts included cash, and lavish overseas holidays for George and his family. SFO Director, Julie Read welcomed the guilty plea...
    04-08-2016, 09:40 AM
  • Identities of corrupt JP's stay secret
    by admin
    The identities of Justices of the Peace disciplined for incompetence, making false allegations or misusing their title for personal gain are being kept secret by the Ministry of Justice.In the case of the above JP Denis Selwyn Callesen of Keri Keri, the Crown Law Office even halted a private prosecution against Mr Callessen after evidence emerged that Mr Callessen and his former secretary Robin Morris had perverted the course of justice.

    The Ministry believes the privacy of...
    23-07-2016, 11:35 AM
  • Government funded escape artist Philip Smith found guilty
    by admin
    The murderer who embarrassed New Zealand law and border authorities by flying to Brazil while on temporary release from prison has been convicted for the audacious escape. Charges of escaping lawful custody and making a false statement to renew a passport have been added to Phillip John Smith's lengthy criminal record, along with murder, child sex abuse, kidnapping, tax fraud and arson. In an unusual legal procedure, a jury was chosen at the Auckland District Court today and the judge immedia...
    22-07-2016, 01:05 PM
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