New Zealand Police v Uno [2018] NZDC 3283

Published 30 November 2018

Application for still images of defendant — public interest — tourist drivers. An application was made for taking still photos of the defendant, Mr Uno, during sentencing. The defendant was facing sentencing on charges involving careless driving causing injury. The defendant was a Japanese tourist and there was increased media interest in cases involving tourist drivers in New Zealand. The defendant argued that the public interest is served by coverage in print and that the still photos were not only unnecessary, but would be so widespread as to appear in Japanese media and might have consequences for the defendant's position as an associate professor. The defendant claimed that Japanese culture would force him to resign, but no supporting evidence was provided. The Judge noted that this case is of strong public interest and that it is the media's job to ensure Court business is aired in the right forums. If the defendant has difficulties in Japan, the Judge stated, they are of his own making. Therefore, the Judge granted the application for still photographs to be taken in accordance with all relevant conditions. Judgment Date: 22 February 2018.