Teina Pora convictions quashed

The privy council has quashed the Tenia Pora convictions. This isn’t a surprise, the more that came out the more of a travesty of justice it looked.

Teina Pora’s convictions quashed but no decision on a third trial

Teina Pora’s convictions for the rape and murder of Aucklander Susan Burdett 23 years ago have been quashed by the Privy Council in London.

In delivering the judgement tonight, Lord Kerr said the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council has concluded “there was a risk of a miscarriage of justice if Mr Pora’s convictions were allowed to stand”.

The Privy Council noted in its formal decision the now famous confessions Pora made to police.

It found: “The combination of Pora’s frequently contradictory and often implausible confessions and the recent diagnosis of his FASD [fetal alcohol spectrum disorder] leads to only one possible conclusion and that is that reliance on his confessions gives rise to a risk of a miscarriage of justice. On that account, his convictions must be quashed.”

The board is seeking submissions within four weeks on the issue of whether there ought to be a third trial for the 39-year-old.

Will the Crown ever admit the stuffed this case up? Now would be a good time.

Teina Pora’s lawyer: He’s probably the happiest man in the country tonight

Teina Pora’s lawyer says he is “absolutely delighted, as is Teina and as are his supporters” following the Privy Council’s decision.

The Privy Council in London tonight quashed Pora’s convictions for the murder and rape of Susan Burdett in south Auckland in 1992.

Pora’s lawyer Jonathan Krebs says his client was “initially speechless” when he learned he was now a free man and would no longer be subjected to “very strict parole conditions”.

“But as it sank in he’s probably the happiest man in the country tonight.

It’s good to see he’s finally got something to be happy about. And his lawyer…

He said the Privy Council had not automatically ordered a retrial, which he says usually happens in cases where a conviction is quashed on appeal.

“What they have done instead is called for submissions from the lawyers as to whether there should be a retrial and over the next four weeks we as a team will be working on those submissions and naturally our argument will be that there should be no retrial.”

It’s not over yet and it’s hard to see how Pora can have a normalish life of freedom, but I hope compensation from the Crown is sought.

Leave a comment

5 Comments

  1. It would be good if such an arduous process wasn’t required to get justice here.

    Reply
  2. not privy

     /  4th March 2015

    Given that Mr Pora at the time of his conviction was a 19 year-old ‘gang prospect’, now also known to be suffering from FASD, one can only wonder how his life might have turned out had he not been given 21 years free room and board……

    Reply
    • Sponge

       /  4th March 2015

      Probably dead by now but who knows? Some gang members turn their lives around – given the FASD it is doubtful that he would have but as I said who knows?.

      Reply
  3. Alan Wilkinson

     /  4th March 2015

    Abolish the Court of Appeal since it seems completely useless. Why on earth did this case have to go to the Privy Council. I understand some senior QCs refuse to take cases to the CoA since it is more interested in finding reasons not to allow appeals than justice.

    Reply

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