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Pora 'deeply moved' by apology

NZ NewswireNZ Newswire 15/06/2016

Teina Pora is overwhelmed and "deeply moved" by a formal apology from the Crown for the more than 20 years he wrongfully spent in prison.

But his legal team are disappointed by the $2.5 million compensation offer that's on the table.

Justice Minister Amy Adams on Wednesday announced that Mr Pora would be compensated for his wrongful conviction and imprisonment for the 1992 rape and murder of Auckland woman Susan Burdett.

Ms Adams has also written to Mr Pora to acknowledge his innocence and unreservedly apologise to him for the "devastating impact" his time in prison has had on his life.

One of Mr Pora's lawyers, Ingrid Squire, told reporters after the justice minister's announcement that her client is "very pleased to have his innocence finally formally acknowledged".

However, Mr Pora and his legal team will be taking some time to consider the compensation offer.

"For anyone in this situation it's a significant moment and something that can't be rushed into," Ms Squire said.

Jonathan Krebs, another of Mr Pora's lawyers, said they're disappointed the compensation offer hasn't been adjusted for inflation, as had been recommended by Rodney Hansen in his independent review of Mr Pora's case.

"One can't be ungracious about the award and about the offer of compensation, but at the same time one can't loose sight of the fact this man suffered 22 years' incarceration in one form or another for crimes he did not commit," he said.

Police have also acknowledged Mr Pora's apology and compensation from the Crown, and offered an apology of their own.

Acting Commissioner Glenn Dunbier said while the investigation and prosecution of Mr Pora was conducted in good faith, there were deficiencies in the police original investigation and he apologised for that.

"There are lessons to be learnt from this case but there is nothing to suggest that police staff involved acted in anything other than good faith," he said.

Police interview practices had improved since Mr Pora's case and there is now a greater awareness of issues like fetal alcohol spectrum disorder and its impact, Mr Dunbier said.

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