John Banks said he would not be standing for Epsom next
year. Photo / Mark Mitchell
Beleaguered MP John Banks will face a judge-alone trial
Banks is facing allegations that he filed a false electoral
return during his failed run for the Auckland mayoralty in
He appeared in the High Court at Auckland this morning for a
criminal callover, where the nature of his trial was set.
His trial was fixed for May 2014, and was set down for 10
Judge Justice Brewer granted Banks' counsel's request for a
judge-alone trial, saying he thought it was "sensible''.
It was his first court appearance since a judge ruled he
should stand trial over the allegations, in which he is
accused of recording two donations from Kim Dotcom as
Banks announced last week he would stand down as Act Party
leader in March because of the trial.
Banks sat in the public gallery as his case was called,
prompting the judge to ask why he was not in the dock.
As his lawyer began to address the court Justice Brewer
interrupted him to say: "There's no one in the dock.''
Banks was called by his lawyer to stand in the dock, flanked
by a security guard.
Dressed in a navy pin-striped suit and tie, Banks did not say
anything but stood calmly facing the judge, occasionally
looking over at the media.
- Patrice Dougan of APNZ