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Farmers from Mt Oxford in shock at judge's ruling

August 21, 2008

Canterbury farmers from Mt Oxford in shock at judge’s test case ruling

Canterbury farmers Mark and Karen Feary of Mt Oxford today said they were shocked at a test case High Court ruling released this week.

The Fearys have been in dispute with the Crown for nearly 25 years in issues relating to the 1780ha Mt Oxford land block.

``We were advised by our previous lawyers (Buddle Findlay), a senior counsel and now our current senior counsel that the word ‘Court’ meant High Court under 151 of the Law Practitioners Act 1982, Mark Feary said.

``The interpretation section two of that act expressly defines: ‘Court means High Court and includes a judge of the Court’ and we thought that was that in our case,’’ Feary said.

Yet Justice French determined that she ‘found the question a difficult one to determine as they are strong arguments either way (35)’, but in the end found that the word ‘Court’ meant something else in their case, he said.

The Fearys are staggered and disappointed at the outcome and other aspects of the judgement (not part of the test case ruling) but remain resolute in their fight for justice.

They said they were pleased for Buddle Findlay that they at least were entirely successful in their appeal heard before Her Honour as the same time as their appeal.

``We are the awaiting the Solicitor General’s response in regards to our recent complaint, before deciding on the necessity and scope of further litigation,’’ Feary said.


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