13 Oct 2008

Wellington council 'powerless' to stop topless parade

5:58 pm on 13 October 2008

Wellington City Council says it is powerless to stop a topless motorcycle parade, which is scheduled to be held on 7 November.

The mayor and the parade organiser both agree that a recent court ruling has legitimised the event's future.

In August, Auckland City Council tried to stop the parade by arguing that it promoted a pornography exhibition.

Judge Nicola Mathers said barebreasted women may be distasteful to some, but they are not offensive "per se", so an injunction could not be enforced.

Organiser Steve Crow says that decision set a precedent and his sights are now set on the capital.

Wellington City Council says it has sought legal advice about the parade and will not act to stop the proceedings in light of the Auckland ruling.

Mayor Kerry Prendergast says councils are powerless on the issue, unless it is deemed offensive - then it is up to police to intervene.