Accused collapses in court
A Kaitaia businessman facing 19 charges of indecent assault and sexual connection against children under 16 was denied bail when he appeared in Kaitaia District Court today.
Daniel Taylor collapsed in the dock as he was being addressed by Judge Greg Davis and was escorted from the court by police to receive medical attention.
The hearing continued in Taylor's absence. Judge Davis denied him bail for fear that he could interfere with the ongoing investigation.
"In my view there is a real and appreciable risk that he will interfere with victims and witnesses," the judge said.
The public gallery at the court was packed as five new charges against a new victim were today added to the previous 14 Taylor was facing, taking the total to five victims. All were under the age of 16.
Taylor’s alleged offending occurred between April 2007 and September 2012.
The judge said Taylor's apparent five-year grooming campaign meant there was likelihood he could interfere with the alleged victims, some of whom were aged under 12.
"There appears to be the hallmarks of a campaign of abuse, and with the ongoing investigation, this cannot be underscored."
The police investigation had revealed one further potential victim who had yet to come forward.
Taylor, who had been a prominent figure in the town, was a former leader of the Kaitaia Business Association and was also a prominent elder and youth leader in the Church of the Latter Day Saints.
Taylor also became a caregiver at Child Youth and Family in April 2011 after passing all the required checks, but this was revoked as soon as CYF became aware of the police investigation.
He will next appear on 18 December.