1 Feb 2014

Pora's appeal chances rated strongly

6:29 am on 1 February 2014

A law professor says Teina Pora's appeal to the Privy Council against his rape and murder convictions has a strong chance of success.

Teina Pora.

Teina Pora. Photo: TVNZ / One News

Pora has twice been convicted of raping and murdering Susan Burdett in her South Auckland home in 1992, and has spent 20 years in jail for the crimes he says he did not commit.

His lawyers last August filed an appeal with the London-based Privy Council, which on Friday announced it had granted the application.

One of Pora's lawyers, Jonathan Krebs, said the appeal would be heard principally on the reliability of Pora's confession to police, and also on a specific piece of evidence relating to Malcolm Rewa, who has been convicted of Ms Burdett's rape.

Auckland University associate law professor Bill Hodge said the appeal is likely to succeed because of oddities in the conviction regarding DNA evidence and pointers to Malcolm Rewa.

"I wouldn't put a percentage on it and I don't wish to be in any contempt of the lordships in London but I'd say there's an excellent chance for Mr Pora to have some success in London."

Pora's legal team expects the case to be heard about October.