21 Jan 2005

Pitcairn Islander in bail hearing in Sydney

8:22 am on 21 January 2005

A Pitcairn Islander will appear before a Sydney court later today, amid further legal proceedings involving sex abuse charges against men from the small Pacific community.

Shawn Christian is facing an extradition hearing which if successful would see him tried in New Zealand in a specially constituted Pitcairn Island court.

He is charged with two counts of rape and one of aiding and abetting another to rape.

His father - Pitcairn's former Mayor Steve Christian and an older brother, Randy Christian have already been convicted and sentenced for raping underage girls on Pitcairn Island.

Today the defence is expected to argue that he should be released on bail while an extradition hearing takes place.

Three other Pitcairn men, who now live in New Zealand, are already before the Auckland District court, fighting extradition proceedings on sex abuse charges.