Serial rapist seeks $10,000 in compensation
Serial rapist Nicholas Reekie is seeking at least $10,000 from the prison system for what he believes is retaliation against him due to his many complaints.
Reekie, one of the country's most notorious sexual offenders, wants Corrections to declare it was wrong to transfer him to a Waikato prison without warning, and to dismiss several of his misconduct charges.
Supported by his long-term girlfriend, the 42-year-old represented himself at the High Court in Auckland yesterday in his first "substantive" hearing, bringing a mountain of paperwork carried in several bags by prison guards.
Reekie was sentenced in 2003 to preventative detention with a minimum prison term of 25 years, for the rape of four women.
One of the convictions against Reekie was for raping an 11-year-old girl in 1992, for which David Dougherty was jailed for more than three years before being acquitted at a retrial.
He had previously been jailed for abducting two children. Within three weeks of his release he raped a 69-year-old woman. A month later he raped a 23-year-old woman.
While in prison, Reekie has repeatedly attempted to overturn his charges and laid numerous complaints about his treatment.
In a 2011 appeal, he was described as a "vexatious litigant". Some of the complaints have included sleeping on a thin mattress and having to dry himself with a small towel, being deprived of light, not having enough toilet paper, and being called "knob rot" by guards after developing a genital infection.
Last year, the High Court found his rights were breached when he was strip searched by prison staff but it refused to award compensation.
At yesterday's hearing, Reekie was allowed to sit at the legal bench unaccompanied by guards while he made his submissions to Justice Rodney Hansen.
Though he is already back at Auckland Prison, Reekie said he wanted Corrections to acknowledge it should not have moved him to Springhill without warning. He said it was his right to be in Auckland Prison as that was closer to his family and part of his management plan.
"It's my regional prison, sir, I've spent 15 or 16 years there for better or for worse... I've had my ups and downs."
Reekie also said he wanted Corrections to acknowledge he had been provoked into misconduct by other prisoners who "abused" him, and that several of the charges should be dropped.
He said he was kept out of the decision-making process, was kept on lockdown for 23-hours a day, wrongly punished and wrongly had his privileges removed. He also says that staff tried to push him into double-bunking and off segregation, which was also part of his management plan.
Reekie said his management plan was "unreasonable, unlawful and plainly wrong".
Corrections denies Reekie's accusations, and says there should not be relief granted. It will argue that many of his concerns have already been addressed and that internal procedures do not need to be brought before the High Court.
The hearing is set down for two days.
- © Fairfax NZ News