No bail for devious' accused

Thirty-seven-year-old Kaitaia man Daniel Luke Taylor, who faces 22 charges of sexual offending against boys, was again denied bail when he appeared before Judge John McDonald in the Kaitaia District Court yesterday.

Originally remanded in custody by Judge Greg Davis in the same court following his arrest on November 15, Taylor was further remanded to January 31, when he is due to appear for a post-committal hearing.

The application for electronically-monitored bail (e-bail) proposed that Taylor live at a rural residence outside Kaikohe, Judge McDonald saying that would not prevent further offending as a remand in custody would.

Nor would it prevent the accused from making contact with witnesses.

"On the face of it he deliberately went about gaining the confidence of these families and boys so he could carry out the sexual activity alleged," he said.

"He has shown a careful and devious mind.

"He knows that the case against him substantially relies on the word of six young complainants, and I consider there is still a risk of him trying to get one or more of those complainants to change their story," Judge McDonald said.

Police prosecutor Duncan Coleman had again opposed the granting of bail, telling Judge McDonald that there had been no change in circumstances since November 15.

The police regarded the risk of Taylor interfering with witnesses as high.

The offending, which had allegedly taken place over a five-year period from 2007, had involved systematic grooming of the victims, who were still susceptible and vulnerable to his influence.

Counsel John Munro, who saw the alleged potential for interfering with witnesses as the prime ground for opposing bail, argued that his client had no previous convictions and no bail record to suggest that he would be a risk.

Taylor had known on September 25 that he was under investigation, but had not been charged until November 15.

He had made no contact with potential witnesses over that period, and in fact had removed himself from situations where he might have been seen as interfering.

"He did all the right things," Mr Munro said.

"The court can be confident that he can be relied upon not to breach any conditions of bail."

- Northland Age

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