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Bevan Hurley

Bevan Hurley is the Herald on Sunday chief reporter.

Rapist Reekie claims victims lied

Nicholas Reekie. Photo / Brett Phibbs
Nicholas Reekie. Photo / Brett Phibbs

Serial Rapist Nicholas Reekie is featured on a website claiming his victims are liars and blaming his crimes on others.

On a website created by his long-term girlfriend and which the Department of Corrections says it can't touch, Reekie claims his 11-year-old victim - who was abducted and raped at knifepoint - perjured herself in court.

It also seeks to implicate exonerated man David Dougherty and a mystery third person in the crime.

Reekie was sentenced to preventive detention for a string of appalling crimes, including the 1992 rape and abduction of a girl in West Auckland, one of the most controversial legal cases in New Zealand history.

In a section entitled "Examples of the complainant's lies", it states the girl must have invented her testimony.

Reekie's DNA was found on the girl's pyjamas and he claims it could have rubbed off while he was travelling in a police car.

The website has appalled the mother of his youngest rape victim.

Asked for her opinion of Reekie, based on what he did to her daughter, she said: "He is a vicious, evil, nasty criminal. He is as cunning as a rat.

"He wants people to feel sorry for him. If he wasn't such a horrible little bugger he wouldn't have found himself in this situation."

The mother, who sat through months of court hearings in three trials, said the website contained cruel inaccuracies that could disrupt her daughter's attempts to get on with her life.

In attempts to prove Reekie's innocence, the site goes into disturbing detail about the injuries sustained by the young girl.

Reekie's partner of 10 years has constructed the website while attempting to run a parallel public relations campaign.

She said she believed many court cases were decided in the media, long before any court cases took place. "Going into an appeal, [media coverage] would make an enormous difference."

General Manager Prison Services Jeanette Burns said there were no plans to shut down the site.

"We would immediately notify the NZ police if the material posted on a website threatened the safety of the public, our staff, or jeopardised the operational security of a prison," she said in a statement. She said prisoners were not allowed access to the internet.

Reekie was sentenced to preventive detention for 30 crimes relating to four victims in 2003, and will be eligible for release in 2022.

Described as a vexatious litigant in a 2011 appeal, Reekie is also suing three government departments for $1 million for damages for sleeping on a thin mattress and having to dry himself with a small towel.

Reekie, whose partner says he has become a "bush lawyer" in prison, has repeatedly attempted to overturn his charges and was helping other prisoners with complaints.

He was once jailed for abducting two children.

Within 18 days of his release from jail, Reekie repeatedly raped a 69-year-old woman. A month later he raped a 23-year-old woman.

He was arrested in September 2002 for the attack on the 11-year-old girl and sentenced to preventive detention in 2003.

A court heard Reekie tried to interact with his victims and form relationships with them, and had hoped he might even be a friend of one of them.

NAME WAS RELEASED IN UNI BUNGLE

The child rape victim in one of New Zealand's most notorious criminal cases was accidentally named on the internet by Victoria University academics.

The victim, who was 11 when she was raped by Nicholas Reekie in 1992, was identified on the university's website by two experts in forensic evidence who were researching the case.

Her mother complained to the Privacy Commissioner when she noticed the mistake in 2001 - and after a lengthy battle with the university and privacy watchdogs she was awarded $10,000 compensation.

The girl's mother was told nobody would have seen the name, but said: "I simply couldn't believe that nobody had seen this stuff."

The victim, now 30, was referred to a specialist for a psychological damage assessment. "This dredged up everything again," said her mother.

She said the file was deleted two days after she reported it, but remained in "cache" files for another four months.

One of the professors, Tony Vignaux, now semi-retired, said this week it had been a "mistake, completely".

"The name was included in an email to us from a lawyer. There was a mistake made in linking names. Clearly when we were told that it had been noticed we were made aware of it, we took it down."

- Herald on Sunday

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