New inquests will not be held into the deaths of the Bain
family in Dunedin in 1994 unless someone requests them and
the solicitor-general or the High Court grants that request,
it was announced yesterday.
It was unlikely, at this stage, David Bain would make a
request for new inquests, supporter Joe Karam said last
night, despite Mr Bain's acquittal bringing into question the
accuracy of the family's death certificates, particularly in
the case of Robin Bain, whom Mr Bain's lawyers argued
"Of course, it may be, as time passes by, that David might
feel some compulsion to investigate the records, but at this
stage, I don't think it is a priority."
Mr Bain (37) was acquitted of the 1994 murders of his parents
and three siblings at a retrial which ended last month in the
High Court at Christchurch.
He had spent 13 years in prison after originally being
convicted of the crimes.
Chief Coroner Neil MacLean said last month he would discuss
the matter with former Dunedin coroner Jim Conradson and
current Dunedin Coroner David Crerar to assess the death
certificates and whether they felt an inquest was needed.
Judge MacLean said yesterday the inquest that was opened by
the Dunedin coroner was completed in terms of the provisions
of the Coroners Act 1988.
The inquests could now only be reopened on order of the High
Court or solicitor-general.
A Crown Law spokeswoman said the solicitor-general had
received no requests for new inquests into the Bain deaths.
If any were received, the solicitor-general would consider
them carefully before making a decision.
Mr Karam said Mr Bain knew he had nothing to do with the
deaths of his family and everybody knew they died from
gunshot wounds, so holding new inquests was "of little
Under the law, an application for a new inquest can be made
in cases where there is "fraud, rejection of evidence,
irregularity of proceedings, discovery of new facts, or for
any other sufficient reason".