Blessie accused's name remains secret

SIMON DAY
Last updated 11:40 18/06/2014
Blessie
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Blesilda "Blessie" Gotingco

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Supporters of Blessie Gotingco's family say they are frustrated but accepting of the decision to grant further name suppression for her accused killer today.

The man charged with the murder of the Auckland mother of three was removed from court by security after an angry outburst where he swore loudly during his appearance.

He was granted interim name suppression in the North Shore District Court on 28 May, and this was continued until his trial in March 2015 by Justice Brewer in the Auckland High Court this morning.

Gotingco, 56, went missing on Saturday, May 24, after catching a bus home from her work in Auckland's CBD. Her body was found in Eskdale Cemetery in Birkdale on Auckland's North Shore.

The accused was arrested on the Tuesday after a police search of his Birkdale apartment and the seizure of a car at the property.

Around 20 supporters of Gotingco's family were this morning outside the court carrying signs calling for justice for Blessie.

Her husband and children were also at the court. Antonio Gotingco thanked the people for their support as he left carrying a portrait of his wife.

One North Shore woman, who organised a march a week after Gotingco went missing that saw more than 1000 people turn out in support of the family, said they must trust the justice system's decision.

"It feels like he is getting the court's protection and support. But in actual fact it's the way the process must move forward so there is no loopholes for him to get off in the future," said Raewyn Solomon, who arrived with the family.

The decision was frustrating for the family and community but they realised they must be patient with justice, she said.

"But we have to realise there is a clear system in place. If we jump the gun we won't get the justice we want. You just have to take a deep breath," said Solomon.

Signs erected on the grass verge outside the High Court read: "Innocent victims pay the price".

Others demanded retribution for the murder: "Dear NZ Justice System, set it right, life for a life."

The accused was remanded in custody without making a plea.

The murder trial is due to start on 2 March 2015.

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