Thursday, April 06, 2006

Evidence suppressed in rape trial turns up on campus

NZ Herald
Evidence suppressed in rape trial turns up on campus

By Elizabeth Binning

Suppression orders relating to the Louise Nicholas case have been breached again, this time in Auckland - just around the corner from where the high-profile rape case was heard.

Assistant Police Commissioner Clint Rickards and former police officers Bob Schollum and Brad Shipton were last week cleared of the historic sexual allegations made by Ms Nicholas.

Yesterday morning, around 200 pamphlets, detailing information suppressed during the trial, were distributed at Auckland University.

Part of the pamphlet said: "This information is being disseminated in Wellington by a group of concerned women. I believe that they should be congratulated for their stance and that they should be supported."

The contents of the pamphlets were then debated on the university quad in front of about 80 students who voted to support the illegal distribution of the pamphlets earlier in the day as a "show of solidarity".

Political activist Nick Keesing, who organised the pamphlet drop, said he wanted to support the Wellington women who had distributed 1600 similar pamphlets on Monday.

The students also resolved to support the Wellington women's cause. They seemed unaware that those in Wellington have agreed to stop spreading suppressed information after being spoken to by police.

Authorities are already investigating the breach of suppression that occurred and breaches that have allegedly occurred on the internet and radio. Mr Schollum's lawyer Paul Mabey said news of yesterday's pamphlet drop increased his concern about the suppression breaches.

Auckland City Police spokeswoman Noreen Hegarty said she was not aware of any complaints in relation to yesterday's pamphlet drop. Mr Keesing said he did not fear the repercussions of breaching suppression and would fight any such charges or fines in court.


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