Te Kura Kaiwhakawa, the Institute of Judicial Studies, has published “Responding to misconceptions about sexual offending; example directions for judges and lawyers”.
The New Zealand Bar Association and the Criminal Bar Association have each written to the nominated person for the Institute raising concerns about some of the directions. You can read their letters here.
The NZBA and CBA wish to:
(a) provide a resource to assist defence lawyers with making submissions about whether all or some of the directions are appropriate in particular case; and
(b) collect data and comment from defence lawyers on the use of the directions.
The Resource page is here.
You can see each example direction, and read the IJS commentary about it. There are suggestions about ways to avoid being taken by surprise when the judge sums up to the jury, and a list of senior practitioners willing to discuss defence strategy before or during your trial. This page will be updated as more knowledge about the use of the directions becomes available.
The Data Collection page is here.
It is inevitable that the appellate courts will want to know when and how the directions are being used in trials. We ask that each defence lawyer complete the directions questionnare for each trial, win, lose or draw. We will collect data anonomously, but ask that each lawyer provide their legal aid number, and a code which tells then which trial their entry relates to. Then if we wish to contact you about a particular case, we can ask Legal Aid to send you a request to talk to us about that case. If you don’t want to respond, we will not learn who you are or which case it was.