Suppression considered in rare sex charge case

Last updated 12:00 06/12/2013

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A Palmerston North man convicted of a rare sexual exploitation charge should soon know if his temporary name suppression will become permanent, more than a year after being sentenced.

The man was to face trial on a rape charge but instead pleaded guilty to a count of sexual exploitation of a person with a significant impairment.

He befriended the female victim in March last year and asked her back to his flat, where they were intimate.

The man thought the pair were intellectual equals, but the woman had more severe difficulties.

He was sentenced in November last year, but has had temporary name suppression since.

Yesterday, Judge Barbara Morris again considered if it should be permanent.

Defence lawyer Fergus Steedman said the man had been receiving counselling, which was going well.

But in a written statement, someone close to the man said he would go into a "downward spiral" and be back at square one if his name was revealed.

Judge Morris said she had planned to give a verbal decision, but had decided to write it instead.

The man's suppression continues until the decision is released in the next week.

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- © Fairfax NZ News

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