4 Mar 2009

Court reserves decision in case over judicial bias

6:45 am on 4 March 2009

The Supreme Court has reserved its decision in a case involving an accusation of judicial bias brought by the Saxmere wool growers group.

In 2005, the High Court ruled in Saxmere's favour in a case between the company and the former Wool Board, but the Court of Appeal overturned that decision.

In Tuesday's case, Saxmere argued that one of the Appeal Court judges may have had a conflict of interest because he co-owned a horse stud with one of the Wool Board's lawyers.

Saxmere's lawyer told the Supreme Court that impartiality is fundamental to the rule of law.

However, the Wool Board's lawyer said there were many more arguments against there being any bias in the case than there were to support the accusation.