Crown solicitors acting as Pro Bono Prosecutors

Grace Haden made this Official Information request to Crown Law Office

Crown Law Office did not have the information requested.

From: Grace Haden

Dear Crown Law Office,
I refer to the interview
In this it states "My idea was to see if I could get some of New Zealand’s top lawyers to offer their services at no charge to help the SPCA bring animal offenders to justice. The Pro Bono Panel is a high profile collection of 40 of the nation’s greatest legal minds (Crown Solicitors, Queens Counsel and Law Firm Partners), and their purpose is to help fight the high incidence of abuse against animals in New Zealand. Each Panel member conducts prosecution cases in Court at no charge for the SPCA. Members of the Pro Bono Panel include such senior lawyers as Mr. Michael Heron QC (who was Solicitor General of New Zealand and head of the New Zealand Crown Law Office), Mr. Simon Moore QC (Auckland Crown Solicitor and now High Court Judge) and Natalie Walker (Manukau Crown Solicitor)."

I note that the CROWN SOLICITORS:TERMS OF OFFICE Last Reviewed: May 2017
located at states at point 16
"Unless granted dispensation by the Solicitor-General, for a specific case or class of cases, Crown Solicitors and lawyers in the Crown Solicitor firm may not:16.4 act for the prosecutor in any private prosecution"

1.please provide evidence of the dispensation for crown solicitors , either specifically for a crown solicitor or as a group generally to act for the prosecutor in private prosecutions for the RNZSPCA, its current and former member societies or branches

2.Further please also provide documentation which you hold which relate to the ability of crown solicitors to offer their work Pro bono for private prosecutions

3.In matters where Probono services have been provided as evidenced by the interview attached who has paid for the services provided by the crown solicitor

4.a copy of the guide lines which exist or were given where dispensation has been granted as to the information passed to the court to ensure that the prosecution is not seen by the court as a crown prosecution

Yours faithfully,

Grace Haden

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From: OIA
Crown Law Office

Dear Grace

We acknowledge receipt of your email of 24 June requesting information under the Official Information Act 1982.

In accordance with section 15 of the Official Information Act a response to your request will be provided as soon as is reasonably practicable, and in any case within 20 working days of receipt of your request, ie by 22 July 2021.

Kind regards,

Crown Law Te Tari Ture o te Karauna
P O Box 2858 or  DX SP20208 | Level 3 Justice Centre | 19 Aitken Street | Wellington 6011

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From: OIA
Crown Law Office

Attachment 6361320 OIA Letter regarding Crown Solicitors acting as pro bono prosecutors.PDF.pdf
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Please find attached letter of today's date from Briar Charmley.

Kind regards

Crown Law Te Tari Ture o te Karauna
Ph:  +64 4 472 1719

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Grace Haden left an annotation ()

It is of note that the solicitor general has never issued any written consent to this or any guidelines as to how such a conflict of interest should be approached see

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