Man to answer charges over Vietnam medals

By Hana Garrett-Walker

Photo / File
Photo / File

Vietnam war veterans would like to formally acknowledge their disgust towards a former Otaki Returned Services Association president at his court appearance on Wednesday.

Don Moselen appeared in Levin District Court last month after being charged with wearing medals he was not entitled to and using a document.

Moselen allegedly wore Vietnam War medals at Anzac Day services, but records do not show him serving in the war.

Vietnam War veterans made an official complaint to national RSA headquarters in 2010, after suspecting Moselen had never served in Vietnam.

The RSA asked Moselen to stop wearing the medals, but he was allegedly seen wearing them on Anzac Day.

Moselen has not entered a plea against the charges, but is expected to at his court appearance on Wednesday.

Also at the court appearance will be Vietnam war veterans who are part of the Ex-Vietnam Services Association.

The Association's president, John Barrett, has written to Levin District Court asking that Levin barrister Brian Gore, who is a Vietnam war veteran, be allowed to speak in court to Mr Moselen when he appears on Wednesday.

"What little recognition there is for those who put themselves at risk for New Zealand centres around the award of campaign medals and it is a measure of the disgust we feel that anybody would seek to dishonour that contribution," the Association's vice-president, John Deazley, said.

It is the first time in New Zealand's history anybody has been charged under the 1918 Military Decorations & Distinctive Badges Act with falsely wearing a medal. The maximum fine of $500 has remained unchanged since 1918, Mr Deazley said.

- APNZ

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