Avery v Attorney General [2018] NZDC 13993

Published 24 May 2019

Conspiracy to commit incest — application to disregard conviction — Criminal Records (Clean Slate) Act 2004, ss 10(4) & 10(5). The applicant applied to have her conviction for conspiracy to commit incest disregarded, pursuant to the Criminal Records (Clean Slate) Act. The charges arose from an incident about ten years before, when the applicant got in touch with her father, whom she had not seen since she was four years old. Her internet communications with her father took on a sexual nature, which eventually led to charges against them both. The charges were eventually resolved when both the applicant and her father pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit incest, and convictions against them were entered. As a result of the conviction the applicant lost her job and was unable to find a new one. Expert witness evidence established that the applicant and her father had been suffering from a recognised condition known as genetic sexual attraction, which afflicts some parents and children who are separated when the child is young, and are later reunited as adults. The condition does not create a danger for anybody in the community and is not an ongoing risk. The Court found that the applicant had high interests in having the conviction disregarded. She was unable to secure paid work despite being highly qualified. The expert evidence had showed that she was no risk to the community. The Court ordered that the conviction be disregarded. Judgment Date: 10 July 2018. * * * Note: names have been changed to comply with legal requirements. * * *