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Ellis to be bailed?
Lawyers acting for convicted child abuser Peter Ellis have applied for a September 1998 Court of Appeal appearance.
The Dominion (11 May) reported that Ellis could be released on bail in the next few weeks as he awaits the appeal. Ellis is half way through a ten-year jail sentence after being found guilty in 1993 of 16 charges of sexually abusing children in his care.

In late March, Justice Minister Doug Graham said the Governor General Sir Michael Hardy-Boys had accepted his advice that Ellis’s case should be referred back to the Court of Appeal for further consideration.

Ellis’s supporters had earlier petitioned the Governor General for a free pardon for Ellis, but this was rejected. However, the Governor General decided to refer the matter back to the Court of Appeal. The Appeal Court can rule on whether the convictions should remain, it could order a retrial or find the original convictions were “safe”. In the latter case, Ellis could still refer the matter to the Privy Council.

Judith Ablett-Kerr QC, acting for Ellis said the referral to the Court of Appeal was ‘incredibly significant’ and highly unusual, having occurred only six or seven times in New Zealand’s judicial history. She said you could not go back to the Court of Appeal unless there were serious concerns about the verdict.

She said the Court of Appeal would have different information before it this time. She said Ellis was delighted with the news and it was the course of action he had always wanted.

Ellis’s supporters said in May that he was determined ‘not to accept anything less than a recognition of his innocence and of the unfairness of his trial.’

For more information on the Ellis case, see Convicted pedophile boycotts parole hearing

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Ellis lawyers apply for Court of Appeal appearance

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