19 May 2014

Contempt of court laws 'vague'

12:44 pm on 19 May 2014

The Law Commission says contempt of court laws need updating to deal with the rise of the internet and social media.

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Photo: PHOTO NZ

A paper, released by the Commission on Monday, calls the current laws vague and says the rules should be more clearly defined.

The paper is part of a Law Commission review of contempt of court laws.

Lead commissioner of the review judge Peter Boshier says the current rules predate the internet age.

He says jurors can now easily access information on the internet and communicate through social media which could prejudice a trial.

The Commission is also considering whether contempt of court common law tenets should be replaced by statute.