Collins to release Bain compo reports

Last updated 09:54 13/12/2012
Retired Canadian Supreme Court judge Ian Binnie.
REPORT AUTHOR: Retired Canadian Supreme Court judge Ian Binnie.

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Justice Minister Judith Collins is to release the controversial David Bain compensation reports this afternoon.

Pressure has been building to make public the report completed by retired Canadian judge Ian Binnie in September. Collins said a peer review by Robert Fisher QC must be released at the same time.

Binnie and Collins have publicly traded blows over what was in Binnie's report on the compensation bid.

He had concluded Mr Bain was innocent on the balance of probabilities of the murder of his parents, two sisters and brother in Dunedin in 1994.

Collins says Mr Binnie made "significant errors", misinterpreted evidence and went "well beyond" his terms of reference. She has asked for his report to be peer-reviewed by New Zealand lawyer Robert Fisher, which she is due to receive today.

Binnie - who was paid $400,000 for his work - has said Collins is playing politics and it is unfair that Bain has not be allowed to see the report.

Mr Bain is seeking compensation for the almost 13 years he spent in jail after being convicted in May 1995. He was acquitted at a retrial in 2009 and could get about $2 million but the Government is not obliged to pay compensation.

Labour's justice spokesman Charles Chauvel has called on Collins to also release the letter of instruction to Fisher and any advice from the Government's lawyers on Binnie's report.

"Judith Collins needs to be completely transparent today, even more so given she has avoided the scrutiny of Parliament's question time and urgent debate by releasing the report after the house has adjourned for the year," he said.

While it is "good news" the report is to be released today, Chauvel said Collins has mismanaged the episode.

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- The Dominion Post

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