GUEST BLOG: My Son has been wrongfully convicted of rape – Part Three

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Jackie & her Son, Jamie.

I’ve always been about doing the right thing, never dragging someone down to pull us up. Telling the truth and following the rules. Throughout this whole process, our lawyer never fought dirty, never used inflammatory language as the Crown did and always did everything by the book.

Throughout our previous articles we were always focussing on a system that failed an innocent man, highlighting the issues within that system.

At the Court of Appeal, all our supporters were wearing small badges that simply read “Justice for Jamie” as a show of solidarity between the 60+ supporters that came. We were told prior to the appeal to remove them as it may be seen to the Judges as a form of protest. We all removed them before entering the court as we didn’t want to upset the Courtroom.

We all sat silently throughout the hearing despite errors made by the court with our documentation being lost. We patiently sat through the Crown stumbling through their
response to our points as the puzzled looking judges had to not once, but twice ask her to hurry it up as the Defence were owed a right of reply.

We stayed silent throughout all the media stories published during the ongoing trial. Stories using the same inflammatory language of the Crown prosecutor which was supposed to be prohibited in a courtroom but made it to the public. We never got a right of reply for the Court of the ‘Public Opinion’.

We stayed hopeful that the Justice System would do what is right and seek justice for the citizens of our country.

The District Court judge failed the system. The Appeal Court judges agreed to that. But they failed to correct that wrong. The Supreme Court dismissed our appeal based on the fact that Jamie never took the stand – which he is entitled to choose not to. They dismissed critical flaws and evidence never displayed to a jury. Ever.

What could he say in his defence after literally everything was deemed inadmissible or suppressed? The Crown would’ve manipulated him knowing he couldn’t speak on critical evidence to discredit their statements.

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The Police failed its citizens when it withheld crucial evidence to a serious trial only to be revealed to us once the trial was completed and a verdict decided upon.

The Police and Crown failed to ensure a fair trial when a week before the trial, a Police ‘Job Sheet’ was created and only given to us 3 days prior to the trial starting. It outlined important evidence the Police and Crown were told 11 months prior, yet did not reveal. It was also deemed inadmissible and we couldn’t share it with the jury as part of our defence.

If a case like my sons can go so wrong with our current laws, I seriously fear for our men in the future should the Labour/Greens Sexual Violence Bill before parliament go ahead in its current form.

Concerns raised by top lawyers Samira Taghavi and Marie Dhyrberg QC, just to name a few, need to be heard before we make law changes for cases of Sexual Assault.
Labour and the Greens are trying to quickly push a Bill through parliament under our noses which will further restrict men from defending themselves with evidence of their innocence.

The National Party have even recently launched a campaign “demand the debate” as the Government are making changes to policies they say are being rushed through with insufficient public consultation. I don’t think even half of NZ know what this bill is about let alone how it may affect their loved ones should someone accuse them of sexual assault.
Simon Bridges has a strong support of most of the bill, however he takes serious issue with the same two points as other Lawyers have. Like him or not, as a former Crown prosecutor, he is the most qualified of our politicians on the effect of the bill, having actual longstanding knowledge and experience in running sexual prosecutions.

The Bill in its current form is dangerous to our men and most particularly Maori and Pacific Islanders. I’d encourage the Labour Maori Caucus and the Maori Party to seriously consider opposing this Bill in its current state, for the sake of our people.

I pray for all New Zealanders who will be affected by this bill. God forbid that it should continue through parliament in its current form. I know first-hand how devastating a wrongful conviction – which will be made more likely by this bill – will be for many more families in the future.

Marie Dyhrberg QC, recently wrote of the increasing occurrence of false allegations. One example was her case of a taxi driver falsely accused of sexual assault. There are different claims as to the percentages of false allegations, coming from different studies and estimates that depend upon the lens the ‘expert’ looked through. But in the end, any false allegation is one to many.

It also breaks my heart to personally know women who are too scared to come forward with their stories for fear of not being believed. The statistics of women who have genuinely faced sexual assault are also horrific. This is why it gravely concerns me further that there are some who falsely accuse – they are not only destroying the lives of innocent men but causing further doubt upon genuine victims of sexual assault.

I gratefully thank readers for their support and questions – the sorts of questions a jury should’ve been able to think about and consider before making their decision. Questions were particularly raised around the lack of Jamie’s DNA confirming that there was in fact no sex at all.

If you have now read part 1, 2 and 3 of Jamie’s story and believe that there was clearly unfairness in the case and a miscarriage of justice, know we will not stop this fight.

Everyone deserves true and honest justice and a system that stands for just that.

 

Jackie is a hardworking mother and grandmother; she is also the Managing Director of her own business. From humble beginnings, Jackie endured hardships during her childhood, spending time in Women’s Refuge and working from a young age to help support her mother and siblings. She has been married for 26 years and resides on the Hibiscus Coast with her family.

22 COMMENTS

  1. This needs to be far more widely read. I do hope that some of the larger media outlets will take it up and re-publish or otherwise get it out there to the wider population.

    • I totally understand your frustration because i fought for my brother the same way as you fighting for your son,difference is jamie may b have touched that girl by consent but my brother have not even touched the girl and still we have to spend life savings to get him out.no other people will understand this unless they go through this.thanks

      • From what I have read in the article it said there was no sex at all….as proven by the fact that there was no DNA.
        I can’t understand how so many of these cases with little to no actual evidence or evidence withheld end with a jury able to decide guilt beyond reasonable doubt….how can you be certain that there was sexual contact with a complete lack of DNA?

        I’m sorry to hear you and your brother are also victims of a broken system and false accusations. It’s just not right. I hope you continue the fight him <3

  2. Labour and the Greens are trying to quickly push a Bill through parliament under our noses which will further restrict men from defending themselves with evidence of their innocence.

    If they really believed in the integrity of the bill, they would not be rushing it through, and they would take time to bring it out and explain it to people. And, they would open it up for discussion.

  3. I think i have solved our over populated prison, clogged justice system, sexual violence and lack of police problem. We can just ask their mum if they think they did it.

        • No, because you haven’t the intelligence to comprehend what is being discussed here. There are three parts to this ongoing blog ,if you had read them all and understood them you would not be making such worthless, inane comments.
          Those of us who empathize with Jackie’s torment have often had similar experiences with our toxic ineffective and cruel joke Justice system. Would that you had had such a similar level of experience or better still worked at any level of our horrendously damaging and dangerously violent Justice system.Then you may of had something constructive to add. But you don’t because you don’t know anything.

    • Yes Kim, mothers are a problem when they speak up about malpractice harming childrens right to a fair trial. What an unruly justice we would have if we didn’t shut them up.

  4. Well said Jackie , you keep standing tall and those that know Jamie and support him knowing him and the wrong doing around this case and not getting a fair trial will keep fighting for him and our family until the truth comes out. Jamie is like a son to me and if I could I would trade places with him and set him free from this hell nightmare he has been given , as I believe in Jamie and he shouldn’t be in jail , the harm it is doing to him as a man and to his family our family . I stand beside you my sister and Jamie until the day I die. Let the truth be heard in this country. Jamie will never be Free until this wrongful conviction is over turned . We will never stop fighting for this truth to come out while I live on this earth .

  5. Crown Prosecutors character assassinate, defame, and abuse witnesses and defendants daily.They mock deride and sneer at expert witnesses . They lie repeatedly and destroy people’s lives.They manipulate evidence and juries and judges do nothing to stop them. They are the scum of the earth. And we the taxpayers pay them out of bottomless troughs of our hard earned dollars to so this. They are utter filth. Most of our overpaid incompetent idiot judges ( for which there are no checks and balances on their moronic judgements) let them get away it. NZ’s justice system is a disgrace. A great big parasitic club and we the people ain’t members.

    • Your strong attack on the Crown’s work in our justice system seems like personal anger with no evidence.You undermine your own “case” because it sounds like opinion with no hard facts. You are undermining Jamie’s case with this diatribe. He deserves better argument.

      • An opinion based on long hard bitter personal experience. For a few facts try the reading the Evidence Act. I cannot believe the sophistry of Crown Prosecutors can be accepted as any kind of truth when they misrepresent manipulate and lie about absolute facts . When they monopolize court time and abuse defendants. When they deny one”s right to speak and don’t inform witnesses just spring it on them, when they assassinate people’s characters with no evidence then deny a defendant’s right of reply just because they can. They are horrible lying toads and our adversarial system serves little purpose but to produce winners and losers not justice and truth. The inquisitorial system of law is superior. Most of our judges are ex crown prosecutors. I suggest you spend some real time in the courts and observe the machine we pay for that fucks people’s lives. It is disgusting and the crown prosecutors are revolting vindictive destructive people.

  6. This is such a terrible injustice & is just beyond belief! It is unimaginable what Jamie is being forced to endure for something HE DID NOT DO!!! I pray for justice to prevail somehow…. #JUSTICEFORJAMIE

  7. How many more innocent people like Jamie are serving sentences like him from falsely made accusations? It’s unbelievable that this is even happening but it is!
    This Labour/Green Bill must not go through it will prevent more innocents like Jamie from having a voice to defend themselves.

  8. In reply to Kim’s solution to our overpopulated prisons, clogged justice system, sexual violence and lack of police;
    I would suggest that people falsely accused and wrongly convicted would fare as well as asking their mum if they did it…under a justice system that allowed all relevant evidence to be heard in court. And all such scientific evidence, the blatantly obvious facts, the threats of job losses by the powers that be to potential witnesses to be very carefully listened to and legally adhered to by the judge and jury in basing their verdict, in preference to the populist cult of the unproven victimhood’s crocodile tears, contrived recordings, hidden agendas and illegal
    inflammatory court language of their lawyers. Very many less people in prison, very much less taxpayer’s money squandered on the undeserving corrupt and maliciously wicked and very many decent police officers freed up to deal with real crime.

    – [ ]

  9. Hi Jackie. I made a comment in Part 1 of your horrific nightmare. I could not believe then what happened to Jamie or how the system treated him so badly and I have not changed my view since then. I am so very sorry that the Supreme Court, which I now know to be the highest court in the country dismissed Jamie’s appeal while it seems that even the higher courts accept that the Crown Prosecutor was wrong about the comments he/she made during the trial. Unfortunately, I am learning the hard way that people like that prosecutor are not called to account for what they did. They are probably patted on the back for getting yet another (wrongful) conviction.

    I too support Marie Dyhrberg QC and Samira Taghavi for the work they and their fellow lawyers are doing in this area and I also support you and Jamie. Being a female who has just graduated from university and now in my first job I understand that I fit the age category (mid-20s) of being woke and part of the #Me Too Brigade. Well, I am proud to say that I am not part of that mind-set and neither are a lot of my friends. We believe in fairness and justice, not the so-called Justice, more like injustice, Jamie and you and your family have suffered.

    The cops and the crown prosecutors have a lot to answer for here and in many other cases but the system protects them as it does the Judge who was the Judge in Jamie’s trial. Those of us who support fairness and justice are criticised by those who speak out in a way that does not support their narrative. I am just sorry that you have to experience that sort of vile criticism when all you are doing is bringing out the truth.

  10. Criminal justice in NZ is very hit and miss. Maybe it is getting worse.

    In one case I attended court in a serious matter. The police and court seemed excellent. This was a few years ago.

    But recently I attended another court case to support a perpetrator and was shocked at how dysfunctional it was. Firstly the perpetrator who seemed more like the victim was told that unless they pleaded guilty at the time of charging, then they would have to spend their entire remand in prison which would be months. This mean’t that they pleaded guilty to pretty serious sounding charges that many would have got off and actually were not very serious at all if they were heard in court. Probation got it wrong that they were not at the address because they visited the wrong address. At one point probation officers left papers that were confidential to the alleged victim at the alleged perpetrators house.

    As they had already got the person to plead guilty (male Maori, minor act but extremely serious charges that he pleaded guilty to possibly because they pulled up the wrong identity record). it became about sentencing in the court.

    Firstly we had to go through some barrier to check we did not have guns/knives but a few hours later (after people were going in and out for breaks) nobody was searched. Stupid security is just one of the many issues I saw on one visit you could easily have gone back with weapons if you were so inclined. There really did not seem to be very smart decisions made in every aspect of the court but instead a pretence of safety and justice.

    The legal aid lawyer did not know much about the case, and only by chance became aware that the information was completely incorrect in the probations report. The person’s police record was wrong and of a serious offender who had been in prison repeatedly with violence etc and this record had been accidentally pasted onto my friends sentencing record because they had the same name. (Maori name). This apparently is very common and was not able to be corrected but apparently was mentioned in court. This meant the sentencing was much harsher.

    Meanwhile a teenager who refused to plead guilty was held in prison for months on charges that related to a domestic violence allegation. It did not seem right that he was not on bail when the charges were not proved. There needs to be more thought into making people plead guilty just to avoid remand. Maybe a psychologist report to check they will not harm the victim could be a useful change for justice.

    I remembered the teenager who was murdered in the prison van. And the teenager who was repeatedly raped in prison. Teenagers should not be treated this way – nobody should be treated this way. In my view nobody should be in prison until they are 24 years old – there should be other facilities for younger offenders and only if the evidence and offence is severe enough.

    I really don’t feel like you can get justice in our NZ system anymore. The guilty seem to get off or their sentence minimised and if you are accused of anything it’s a lottery of what the police, lawyers, probation officers and the court does.

    People can be raped and murdered within our prison system. Teenagers are held on remand for minor or unproven offences. It does not seem very safe or fair.

    As for my friend, it pretty much has stopped him trying to get ahead – he is a genuinely nice person, came from abuse and and he is still being abused by the system. It effected the next generation as he can’t see his kids easily. The person who made the allegations got away with it, is guilty of numerous charges but somehow gets away with it, and using the system to their advantage, as they know just what buzzwords to say to police and advocates.

    I was hoping this was rare, but I am concerned that there is becoming huge dysfunction in the court system – they don’t pick the judges very carefully and they seem too swayed by lawyers and reports and not looking more carefully at the evidence and overall crime and intent.

    Scary stuff!

    “Things went from bad to worse for a survivor of domestic violence who tried to get a court-ordered sharing of marital assets. She lost, was then charged with the crime of perjury, sentenced to home detention.”
    https://www.newsroom.co.nz/abused-wife-condemned-by-judge-then-wrongly-convicted-of-perjury

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