24 Apr 2013

Lawyers critical of Supreme Court decision

5:36 am on 24 April 2013

Lawyers for two of those convicted in the Urewera case have criticised a decision by the Supreme Court to reject their applications to have their convictions and sentences overturned.

Tame Iti and Te Rangikaiwhiria Kemara wanted leave to appeal against their sentences of 2½ years in prison and firearms convictions for their role in military-style camps in Te Urewera National Park in 2007.

The court on Tuesday said it would not hear their appeal.

Iti's lawyer Russell Fairbrother said his client should have been allowed to appeal as he did not get a fair trial.

He said the jury was prejudiced as they were not given enough context as to why the accused were carrying guns in the Urewera bush.