30 Jul 2014

Suppression case important legal test

4:36 pm on 30 July 2014

The lawyer for two women, who have asked the court to remove name suppression from a man convicted of sexual abuse, said the case is an important one for the legal system.

The Christchurch District Court heard an application on Wednesday from the two women. They want their name suppression order lifted, and that of the man found guilty in 1995 of historic sexual abuse against them.

The women's lawyer, Nikki Pender, said the suppression order was made solely to protect the victims, and they no longer want it in place.

She said when the case went to court in 1995, the women never asked for name suppression for themselves, and would have opposed it if they knew it would mean their abuser also got suppression.

Nikki Pender said it's an important test case, particularly as there is a trend for survivors of sexual offending to decide, as part of their healing process, that they no longer need their name suppressed.

The convicted man's lawyer, Jonathon Eaton, says there were no conditions attached to the suppression order, so there is no legal reason for the court to reconsider it.

Judge Paul Keller has reserved his decision.