3 Jan 2014

Independent case review body supported

9:16 pm on 3 January 2014

The Criminal Bar Association is backing calls to create an independent body to investigate possible miscarriages of justice.

Campaigners will launch a petition in the next month to try to initiate a referendum to persuade the Government to establish a criminal case review commission.

When the Privy Council in London quashed New Zealander Mark Lundy's murder convictions for the deaths of his wife and child in October last year it fuelled calls for such a commission to be established.

Criminal Bar Association president Tony Bouchier says it would allow hundreds of cases to be independently investigated.

Mr Bouchier says the Government must take initiative and it cannot wait for a citizens'-initiated referendum.

The Labour Party says it will look into setting up an independent agency if it is elected as the Government this year.

Justice spokesperson Andrew Little says commissions established in other countries have investigated cases and found convicted people to be innocent.