8 Jun 2010

Farmer found guilty of threatening to kill PM

5:09 pm on 8 June 2010

A Canterbury farmer has been found guilty of two charges of threatening to kill the Prime Minister, John Key.

Mark Feary, 53, was also found guilty by a jury in the Christchurch District Court on Tuesday of 12 charges of threatening to cause grievous bodily harm to government officials and politicians.

Feary sent threatening faxes in February last year to the Prime Minister, politicians and government officials including the Commissioner of Crown Lands.

Feary, who represented himself during the week-long trial, had said he wanted to get a long-running legal dispute with the Commissioner of Crown Lands before a jury. He denied the 14 charges.

Judge Raoul Neave told the jurors, however, that they were not required to adjudicate on any of the defendant's past disputes.

The jury of five women and six men deliberated for two hours before finding him guilty of all 14 charges.

Feary was remanded on bail for sentencing next month