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Killer's bail decision not on file: lawyer

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 13/06/2017

The man who killed Auckland teen Christie Marceau was originally denied bail, but the decision couldn't be found in the court file later, a prosecutor in the case has told an inquiry.

Ms Marceau, 18, was stabbed to death in November, 2011 at her North Shore home, barely a month after Akshay Anand Chand was released on bail to within a kilometre of the house.

This was despite him facing charges of kidnapping her and holding her at knifepoint, and the teen expressing fears for her own safety.

Chand, then 18, was found not guilty by reason of insanity of murdering the teen and detained as a special patient.

At a coroner's inquest into the death on Tuesday, police prosecutor Adam Pell said he recalled Judge Barbara Morris declining to grant Chand bail at a busy district court hearing in September and noted it on his file.

He said he had been highly concerned about the application and firmly argued against bail at the hearing because of the nature of the offending, Chand's admissions to police he wanted revenge and the proximity between the proposed bail address and Ms Marceau's home.

But at Chand's next appearance, there were no notes or court files to indicate the decision had been made, and the defence advised it would be applying for bail again, Mr Pell said.

"I'm just curious as to how on earth someone with admissions with these kinds of charges, could possibly be bailed to that address," he emailed to the officer in charge of the case before the new application was heard.

While the judge also ruled the option of electronically monitored bail could still be considered, Mr Pell said an application for that was never lodged by the defence.

Judge David McNaughton in October went on to grant Chand bail at a hearing attended by another prosecutor.

A requested transcript of Judge Morris' decision - showing bail had, in fact, been declined - was not received by the prosecutor's office until after Ms Marceau's death, Mr Pell said.

Mr Pell has also been cross-examined but the details of that evidence cannot yet be published.

The two-week coroner's inquest will look at the administrative processes around Chand's bail, his supervision afterwards and his mental health treatment.

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