Court of Appeal

Having been counsel in well over150 criminal appeals in the Court of Appeal, the following is but a very small sampling;


R v Antonie Ronnie Dixon; [2008] 2 NZLR 617; (2007) 23 CRNZ 911 (CA):

In a highly publicised trial in the High Court at Auckland, Mr Dixon was convicted of a number of serious offences, including murder and the maiming of two women with a samurai sword. Greg represented the appellant on his successful appeal against the convictions in the Court of Appeal. All convictions were overturned and a re-trial ordered.


R v Francis Manewha SHAW; (2009) 24 CRNZ 501 (CA) and R v Francis Manewha SHAW; (2005), CA159/05 (CA):

Francis Shaw was charged with the arson of the historic Rangiatea Church at Otaki. He represented himself at his trial in the District Court at Palmerston North and was convicted. Greg represented him on appeal to the Court of Appeal. The appeal was allowed and a re-trial was ordered.

Mr Shaw again elected to represent himself at his re-trial and was again convicted. He again approached Greg to handle his appeal. The second appeal was allowed in a split decision. The prosecution was subsequently stayed, bringing and end to the proceedings. Both appeals involved a number of novel and very complex legal issues.


 R v Gillan; 30/3/06, CA103/05 (CA):

This was a case stated appeal by the Crown on the question of whether growing cannabis plants can be the subject of a charge of possession of cannabis for the purpose of sale. The respondent, Mr Gillan declined to take any part in the proceedings and Greg was therefore appointed by the Court of Appeal as Amicus Curiae. Detailed submissions were prepared and presented to the Court with the result that the question was answered in the negative. A significant appeal with wide reaching implications.


R v A,B,C,D; 11/4/06, CA288/05:

The appeal of two former police officers (subsequently named as Brad Shipton and Bob Schollum) and two former life guards, convicted of the ‘pack’ rape of a young lady in Tauranga in 1989. Greg acted for one of the life guards ‘D’ – later named as Warren Hales. His appeal against conviction was allowed (the others appeals were all dismissed).


R v Taueki; [2005] 3 NZLR 372; (2005) 21 CRNZ 769 (CA):

 The important Guide-line sentencing Judgment for GBH offending. Greg acted for one of the appellants.


 R v Peter Hugh McGregor Ellis; [2000] 1 NZLR 513; (2000) 17 CRNZ 411 (CA):

The highly controversial and complex mass child abuse case from Christchurch. Greg appeared as junior counsel to Judith Ablett Kerr QC on the appeal against conviction in 2000, (the case having been referred back to the Court of Appeal by the Governor-General in Council, pursuant to section 406 of the Crimes Act 1961), where he presented the oral submissions in respect of 4 of the 6 approved grounds of appeal.


R v Janine Rongonui; [2001] 2 NZLR 385; (2000) 17 CRNZ 310 (CA):

This was a case involving the horrendous killing of a Cambodian refugee by her female neighbour. The deceased was stabbed more than 250 times by her out of control neighbour. Greg was counsel in both of Ms Rongonui’s murder trials in the High Court and the two appeals to the Court of Appeal (each involving full panels of five judges). Greg was 29 years old at the date of the first appeal.

Ms Rongonui was eventually acquitted of murder and convicted of manslaughter. The case is seminal in the evolution of the defence of provocation under NZ law and resulted in massive reform of the law in that area. The case marked the first recognition of ‘diminished responsibility’ and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder as being relevant to provocation.

Greg continued to act for Ms Rongonui during the course of her prison sentence, eventually securing her release on parole. She has not re-offended.


R v Kevin King ; CA120/2011 [2011] NZCA 664:

A successful appeal against conviction for manslaughter. The appellant was a bar manager who ejected a patron from his premises, in the course of which the deceased banged his head on the footpath and subsequently died of his injuries. The appeal focused on the need for the jury to be unnanimous as to the basis of guilt. At trial the case had been left to the jury on an alternative basis and it was not clear that the jury had been unnanimous as to which alternative they had accepted.

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