17 Dec 2014

Smith has named Corrections officer - lawyer

10:11 pm on 17 December 2014

The lawyer for convicted murderer and paedophile Phillip John Smith says his client has named the Corrections officer he has accused of helping him flee the country.

Phillip Smith composition. Paremoremo prison in Auckland

Phillip Smith was questioned at Paremoremo prison today. Photo: RNZ / Police

Tony Ellis

Tony Ellis was present at the meeting. Photo: RNZ / Murielle Baker

In a statement to media this afternoon, Tony Ellis said Smith was interviewed by police for two hours today at Auckland's maximum security prison.

Mr Ellis was present and said Smith gave a detailed account of his interactions with the Corrections officer and named him. The lawyer said he expected police to investigate the claim.

Previously, Smith has said he paid the officer $7000 for a USB stick containing movies, a cellphone and help in applying for his passport. He faces charges of escaping custody and making a false representation when applying for his passport.

Smith, also known as Phillip John Traynor, left New Zealand on 6 November while on a three-day release from Spring Hill prison in Waikato, flying to Chile and on to Brazil.

He was detained in Rio de Janeiro on 13 November and returned to New Zealand.

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