20 Aug 2015

Pastor denies confessing to sex offending

2:12 pm on 20 August 2015

A Hutt Valley pastor accused of molesting two young girls has denied confessing any wrongdoing at a family meeting.

Jone Conikeli, 42, is before the Wellington District Court on seven charges, including assault with intent to commit sexual violation and indecent assault.

The father of one of the victims, who cannot be named for legal reasons, told the court today about a meeting that took place between his family and Mr Conikeli after he learned of the accusations his daughter made.

He said he had not told the police about the meeting when he was interviewed last year because he only answered the questions he was asked and did not offer any further information.

However, in evidence this morning Mr Conikeli denied touching the girls and said the apology he made at the meeting was simply to say sorry that rumours had arisen about the girl and him.

He said those at the meeting were not speaking English and maybe the complainant's father misunderstood what he was saying.

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