15 Dec 2008

Brash renews call for Peter Ellis inquiry

3:59 pm on 15 December 2008

Former National Party leader Don Brash is to continue to push for an independent inquiry into the Peter Ellis case, saying he believes the conviction was faulty.

Dr Brash is one of three people who have written to Justices Minister Simon Power calling for a commission of inquiry into the case.

It is the second time he has called for a government review of the case, which resulted in a jail term of almost seven years for Mr Ellis for child abuse.

Mr Ellis, a worker at the Christchurch Civic Creche, was found guilty of sexually abusing children and jailed in 1993, but maintains his innocence and wants to clear his name.

Dr Brash says he hopes Mr Power will have the courage to do what previous ministers have not.

Mr Power has indicated he will consider launching an inquiry, and is waiting for a briefing on the case from officials.

Dr Brash says he hopes Mr Power will not rely solely on advice from bureaucrats in making his decision because those same officials ruled against an earlier call for an inquiry.

Dr Brash was behind a petition in 2003 calling for an inquiry. It was signed by 807 people, including two former prime ministers.

Dr Brash was joined in his call by former MP Katherine Rich and author Lynley Hood.