Reay lawyer dismisses claims as 'trivialities'
Thu, 06 Sep 2012 12:23p.m.
By Kloe Palmer
Lawyers for the designers of the CTV Building have started their right of reply at the royal commission in Christchurch.
They're disputing closing statements by Stephen Mills, QC, who told the inquiry that design flaws played a major part in the building's catastrophic collapse during the February 2011 earthquake.
Hugh Rennie, the lawyer representing Alan Reay Consultants began his summing up this morning by criticising the closing statements that had just been delivered by Mr Mills.
"In the council assisting submissions there isn't even a section called the earthquake," he says.
Mr Mills has spent the last day-and-a-half telling the commission that design flaws played a major part in the building's collapse. Mr Rennie says some of the comments made by Mr Mills strayed from what was actually necessary.
"Second and thirdhand triviality, when the core issues are those I'm about to go to."
But Justice Mark Cooper didn't seem to agree with Mr Rennie.
"I don't know why you've seen it necessary to criticise counsel for bringing up evidence that's relevant to them," he said.
Rennie's criticisms were no surprise to Mr Mills, who'd already addressed them in his summing up.
"I reject categorically, the suggestion that there was an agenda here and we have strayed outside its terms of reference," says Mr Mills.
After Mr Rennie is finished there are still eight teams of lawyers to deliver closing statements, and they're expected to continue well into tomorrow.
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7/09/2012 10:00:24 p.m.
I feel the same Ruz. This enquiry has come across to me as a witch hunt. With only a few parties being singled out for blame. The commisions responsibilities are to find the faults and assure they don't happen again. I feel this will not be the case!!! They are looking for an individual to blame. This building has had so many issues from start to finish it is quite unbelievable. What happened to taking responsiblity for your actions. Dr Reay has said he will accept responsibility. Has the council said they will take responsibility for signing off design???? Will Council tke responsibility for not checking building properly on not 1 but 2 occasions and allowing these innocent people back into the building!!!!!. I am confused
6/09/2012 6:59:36 p.m.
I suspect that the formal Commission findings will not support Mr Rennie's defence argument.
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