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Lawyer Sue Grey in custody, accused of contempt in court

Lawyer Sue Grey is representing the Great Barrier Island groups.

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Sue Grey in court in July 2019.
Photo: RNZ / Michael Cropp

Sue Grey, a Nelson-based lawyer and co-leader of the Outdoors and Freedom Party is in custody after a judge removed her from the Nelson District Court for contempt this morning, NZME understands.

The circumstances surrounding Grey’s alleged behaviour are not clear, however a hearing will be held this afternoon where Grey will appear before the court.

It’s understood that when Grey was removed, she was supporting a defendant in court, not representing them. She was escorted from court by security, while the public gallery was cleared, a witness said.

Grey is an anti-vaccination campaigner, subscribing to a catalogue of conspiracies surrounding the Covid-19 pandemic and the government’s response. Prior to the pandemic, she was an ardent protester against 5G technology and pesticide 1080.

Still a registered lawyer, last week Grey represented the parents of Baby W in the Auckland High Court as they fought to use unvaccinated blood for their unwell child’s heart surgery. The case was covered internationally.

As well as her legal work, Grey co-leads the Outdoors and Freedom Party. She ran in the Tauranga by-election in June, garnering just under 5 percent of all votes. Since then, all major polls this year have placed the party below 0.5 percent.

Under the Contempt of Court Act, a judge can hold a person in custody for no longer than the end of the day, if they deem the person was disrupting the court.

The judge must then allow for a hearing on the same day where the matter can be resolved or set down for a later date. The judge has the statutory authority to sentence the person to a maximum of three months imprisonment, a $10,000 fine, or 200 hours of community work.

More to come…

* This story originally appeared in the New Zealand Herald.

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