19 Apr 2012

Fake medal-wearer's guilty plea significant - lawyer

1:31 pm on 19 April 2012

The lawyer representing war veterans says an admission by a man who donned Vietnam war medals he had not earned has huge significance.

Donald Moselen, the former president of the Otaki Returned and Services Association, pleaded guilty in the Levin District Court on Wednesday to dishonestly wearing the medals.

He pleaded not guilty to another charge of dishonestly using the Otaki RSA's chequebook.

Moselen had worn the medals at Anzac Day parades from 2007.

It is the first time someone has been convicted under the Military Decorations and Distinctive Badges Act.

The lawyer representing the veterans, Brian Gore, says the guilty plea means an enormous amount to them.

A spokesperson for Vietnam veterans, Ian Barnes, said outside court that he was pleased with the guilty plea, and that Moselen had faced up to his crime.

Moselen will reappear at the court next month for a status hearing on the dishonesty charge.