Court case on hold

A judicial review of Queenstown council’s freedom camping bylaw has been delayed after the judge recused herself from the case.

The New Zealand Motor Caravan Association’s (NZMCA) legal challenge of the 2021 bylaw was supposed to be heard over two days this
week in the High Court in Invercargill.

However, Justice Lisa Preston recused herself after NZMCA counsel Phil Page said it was ‘‘uncomfortable’’ about her ownership of property in ‘‘proximity’’ to two sites in Wānaka that would be part of the hearing’s subject matter.

Its recusal application was opposed by the council, which argued there were no legal grounds, and that the NZMCA should’ve raised the issue pre-hearing.

The NZMCA, the country’s largest freedom camping organisation, claims the bylaw is overly prohibitive and illegal.

New hearing dates have yet to be scheduled.

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