The Department of Conservation is being prosecuted by the Department of Labour over the death of a volunteer who died working for DOC on Raoul Island in January.

DOC has been charged with failing to ensure the safety of a volunteer over the death of Mihai Muncus-Nagy, from Romania, who is believed to have died on the isolated island on January 2.

The matter was called in the Whangarei District Court on M and DOC was remanded without plea to reappear in the court on September 9.

Judge John McDonald said Whangarei was the closest jurisdiction to Raoul Island, which is about 1.1km northeast of Cape Reinga.


However, the matter may be transferred to Auckland to be heard later in the court process.

Mr Muncus-Nagy was taking water-temperature readings when it was believed he got into trouble and was carried out to sea on January 2.

An extensive search was undertaken after the disappearance by DOC workers on the island and by the New Zealand Rescue Co-ordination Centre with a long-range helicopter.

But they could not find any sign of the 33-year-old.