Top Scoops

Book Reviews | Gordon Campbell | Scoop News | Wellington Scoop | Community Scoop | Search

 

Peter Ellis granted leave to appeal case to Supreme Court

Convicted child sex offender Peter Ellis has been granted leave to appeal his case at the Supreme Court.

Peter Ellis, pictured in 1992
Photo: Supplied

Ellis, 61, was jailed for 10 years for abusing seven children at the Christchurch Civic Creche in 1991. He served seven years of that sentence, but has always maintained his innocence.

Sixteen charges were originally laid against him, based on the testimony of preschoolers.

Three of those charges were overturned in 1994 after one of the children said she lied.

A second challenge to the Court of Appeal was dismissed.

In 2001 there was Ministerial Inquiry by Sir Thomas Eichelbaumm, which concluded there was no risk of a miscarriage of justice.

The Supreme Court has been asked to consider if there was a miscarriage of justice due to the children's evidence being improperly obtained, a lack of expert evidence and unreliable expert evidence at trial.

Ellis said in his application for leave to appeal that the Court of Appeal erred in its second decision, by deciding their was no miscarriage of justice.

He said the evidential interviews fell far short of best practice, the jury was not appropriately assisted at trial by the expert witnesses, and the expert evidence was unreliable.

Ellis said there was now consensus in the scientific community as to what could compromise the accuracy of a child's report, and that should be considered.

He filed two affidavits, including one from Professor Harlene Hayne looking at the interviews conducted with children.

The Crown opposed Ellis' application.

The Court said in its decision that research in the affidavit of Professor Hayne had only recently been completed and was a new approach, significantly different from that available to the Court of Appeal in 1999.

It said her analysis could not have been completed any sooner.

As such, it said the affidavits "raise issues of general and public importance and significant issues specific to Mr Ellis' case".

A 2001 book by Lynley Hood, A City Possessed, criticised the convictions as "a witch hunt" and the result of mass hysteria.

However, attempts to get an independent inquiry in 2003, 2008 and 2014 all failed.


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Top Scoops Headlines

 

Gordon Campbell: On Betraying The Kurds

The Americans have now callously thrown the Kurds under the bus and created the ideal conditions for Islamic State to mount a comeback – all done so that Donald Trump can brag on the 2020 campaign trail that he brought the US troops home. How is the current fighting likely to proceed? More>>

ALSO:

Expert Comment: Online Voting Won’t Mean More Engagement

“Overseas experience is that online voting tends to be popular with those who are already likely to vote and who have high levels of digital literacy. It does little to help add new people to the voter pool, and this holds even for young voters.”More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Saudis (Not) Getting Away With Murder

On October 2nd last year, the dissident journalist Jamal Khashoggi was murdered inside the Saudi Embassy in Istanbul, by a hit squad of assassins acting on the orders of the Saudi Crown Prince, Mohammad bin Salman. More>>

Ellen Rykers on The Dig: Community Conservation – The Solution To The Biodiversity Crisis?

It’s increasingly clear that a government agency alone cannot combat the biodiversity crisis successfully. These grass-roots initiatives are a growing resource in the conservation toolbox. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Saudi Oil Refinery Crisis

So the US and the Saudis claim to have credible evidence that those Weapons of Oil Destruction came from Iran, their current bogey now that Saddam Hussein is no longer available. Evidently, the world has learned nothing from the invasion of Iraq in 2003 when dodgy US intel was wheeled out to justify the invasion of Iraq, thereby giving birth to ISIS and causing the deaths of hundreds of thousands of people. More>>

ALSO: