30 Aug 2013

Jail sentence quashed for juror in contempt of court

8:27 am on 30 August 2013

The High Court in Auckland has quashed the jail sentence of a juror who was found in contempt of court after he appealed.

James McAllister, an engineering consultant, was ordered to spend 10 days in prison by an Auckland District Court judge in July, after he told the judge he was too busy at work to serve as a juror.

In a ruling issued on Thursday, Justice Lang said the sentence has been replaced by a fine of $750.

The judge said McAllister's conduct could be adequately punished by the day he spent in the courthouse cells, together with the fine.

As to McAllister's appeal against the conviction, Justice Lang found he was still guilty of contempt for refusing to take the oath.