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Father vows to continue fight for justice despite court ruling

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John MacKenzie with a mountain of legal papers about his son, Kenneth MacKenzie, whose heart was taken without his family's consent. Photo/File
John MacKenzie with a mountain of legal papers about his son, Kenneth MacKenzie, whose heart was taken without his family's consent. Photo/File

A Tauranga man seeking compensation after his dead son's heart was removed without consent has exhausted his avenues for legal appeal after an almost decade long battle - but he says he will not stop fighting.

John MacKenzie, 81, alleges his 20-year-old son Kenneth's heart was unlawfully removed after his life support was turned off in Tauranga Hospital on October 2, 1987 - the day after he suffered serious head injuries in a motorcycle accident. A doctor asked for consent to take his son's heart, but he refused.

He filed an application seeking a recall of a Supreme Court judgment of June 1, 2016 declining him leave to appeal against a judgment of Andrews J in the High Court.

This week the Supreme Court ruled against his application for a recall.

Mr MacKenzie argued that the time frame for limitation purposes did not begin to run until the date on which he received a letter from the Crown Health Financing Agency denying liability on November 24, 2006.

The court ruled that was not in accordance with the way the Limitation Act 1950 operated.

"Nothing that has been said in support of the application would warrant a recall of the 1 June 2016 judgment," the judgement read.

Speaking to the Bay of Plenty Times yesterday, Mr MacKenzie said he would continue to fight.

"I'm pretty upset by the whole thing. I've got to enjoy my retirement instead of all this legal stuff."

He said he was going to make a formal complaint to the Minister of Justice.

He was also going to approach a couple of MPs to ask them to present a petition to Parliament requesting the statutory disestablishment of Crown Law.

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