Pay Bain, says Chamberlain lawyer

By Yvonne Tahana

'Appalling' behaviour by Minister of Justice over independent report makes expat Kiwi solicitor ' ashamed'.

David Bain has suffered enough, Stuart Tipple says. Photo / Simon Baker
David Bain has suffered enough, Stuart Tipple says. Photo / Simon Baker

Lindy Chamberlain's lawyer believes David Bain has been treated worse than his own client by the justice system - led at the very top by Judith Collins.

For three decades solicitor Stuart Tipple, who describes himself as a proud expat Kiwi, fought through multiple inquests, a trial, appeals to the Federal and High Courts, and a Royal Commission for a finding that Azaria Chamberlain was taken by a dingo.

In June this year he was the sole legal representative at the fourth inquest which made exactly that finding nearly 32 years after the infant was taken at Uluru.

Mr Tipple said he had followed the Bain case closely. He was aghast at Ms Collins' criticism of the independent report written by retired Canadian judge Ian Binnie, while keeping its contents confidential.

"I'm really disturbed there's not more legal people in New Zealand that are standing up and saying this is just not good enough. You're just making our whole judicial system a laughing stock.

"During that time representing Lindy Chamberlain, I used to think 'this wouldn't happen if I was in New Zealand' but ... in the Bain case I think he has been subjected to actually worse injustices than the Chamberlains."

He claimed that Collins' actions were "basically painting a picture that she believes he's guilty".

"That's how she's viewing the Binnie report. She's actually not accepting the jury verdict - which is: You are not guilty David Bain, you are innocent.

"It's so inappropriate for a Minister of Justice. She should be accepting that the jury's verdict as binding.

"I just find her conduct on the whole matter appalling and I'm ashamed. Deeply ashamed."

Justice Binnie recommended compensation be paid because his original wrongful conviction could be put down to the failure of Dunedin police to investigate the possibility of innocence.

Mr Tipple and his client met Mr Bain at an International Justice Conference in March. The common thread between all of the participants was that police had "blinkers on" when it came to investigating guilt. He said Robin Bain, who had a history of psychological illness, should have been investigated.

They had also failed to preserve evidence, meaning David Bain had been cheated out of a chance of proving that he was not guilty.

Mr Tipple recalled people spitting on Lindy, who is now known as Chamberlain-Creighton. This year when the final coroner's finding was released he received messages from all quarters saying they accepted that they'd been wrong.

"Poor old Bain, he's not the most handsome fellow and he's been convicted for wearing the wrong kind of jumpers.

"He has suffered enough. He's been acquitted by a jury, you've got an independent referee for goodness sakes stop wasting time and money. Get on with it pay him and let him get on with his life."

- NZ Herald

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