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Ophthalmologists Trial Set Down For February 2002

The Commerce Commission's case against the Ophthalmological Society of New Zealand and five individual ophthalmologists will go to trial in February next year.

Commission Chair John Belgrave said that the Wellington High Court has rescheduled the trial at the Commission's request. The trial had been scheduled for July this year. The Commission sought the new date because of practical considerations with its overseas witnesses.

Mr Belgrave said that the Commission's legal advice is that as the case is before the Court the Commission is unable to provide further information and is unable to publish the names of witnesses or discuss their evidence.

Background The Commission has alleged that the Society and the individuals breached the Commerce Act through anti-competitive collusion that led to the cancellation of cataract operations to have been performed in Invercargill by Australian ophthalmologists. It filed court action in December 1997.


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