A prominent New Zealander charged with indecent assault has been granted interim name suppression till the beginning of his trial.

Heavy suppression orders mean the man cannot be identified, nor can his alleged victims or their ages.

Name suppression lapsed on February 19 but the man had his identity protected for one month to allow him the chance to appeal. The appeal was lodged on March 19 and heard today in the High Court at Auckland before Justice Raynor Asher.

Several media organisations, including NZME. publisher of The New Zealand Herald, lodged a joint request for the appeal to be heard with urgency.

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The man denies 12 charges of indecent assault against two people, including two representative charges. He has elected trial by jury.

The charges, which include allegations of touching the complainants on the breast, buttocks, groin and thigh, are punishable by up to 10 years' imprisonment.