David Bain a millionaire?
Mon, 10 Sep 2012 6:03p.m.
By Tom McRae
David Bain could become New Zealand’s next millionaire.
A leaked report into a claim for compensation for wrongful imprisonment reveals he is innocent and could be in line for millions of dollars.
Joe Karam, a long-time supporter of Mr Bain, says he's not surprised and expects Bain to be compensated.
Mr Bain walked away from his retrial in 2009 a free man. He had served 13 years in prison for the killing of his parents, brother and two sisters.
Mr Karam was present when Mr Bain was interviewed by the man whose report will be central to any compensation.
“My own view is that having your freedom taken away and being incarcerated for years, no amount of money... can probably fix that up because your life is irrevocably destroyed. And in David Bain's case because it's taken so long and the circumstances whereby he lost his entire family, David's circumstances are even more distressing and horrific than other cases.”
Retired Canadian Supreme Court judge Ian Binnie was tasked with assessing Mr Bain's compensation claim.
“I'm not at all surprised to see that Justice Binnie has found David Bain is innocent because anybody who analyses the evidence carefully as justice Binnie certainly has done over the last 12 months would come to the same conclusion.”
To recommend compensation Justice Binnie has to establish that Mr Bain is innocent on the balance of probabilities and that there are extraordinary circumstances surrounding the case.
If both these requirements are met, based on previous compensation cases Mr Bain might receive up to $2 million.
Prime Minister John Key knows more about it than he will say.
“I've received some very top-line indications of what might be in the report, I’m not in a position to comment any further on that. The Cabinet would need to fully consider the recommendations any advice that we'd then receive and make our decision from there.”
Regardless of the recommendation, Cabinet isn't obliged to pay out any compensation. No time frame has been set for when it will be debated in Cabinet or when we'll hear how much if any, Mr Bain will be get.
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