Decisions, proceedings and news from the courts in some common law jurisdictions in the past week.
Idea Services Ltd v Attorney-General  NZCA 470
Appeal concerning immediate modification order (IMO) modifying aspects of the collective bargaining provisions of the Employment Relations Act 2000 (ERA) – Clause 8 of IMO modified s53(3) ERA by providing a 12 month extension period did not start to run while the epidemic notice was in force – IMO made under s15(1) Epidemic Preparedness Act 2006 (EPA) – Validity of IMO – HELD: s53(3) ERA did not contain a requirement or restriction capable of being modified by an exercise of the power contained in s15 EPA – s53(3) merely extended the life of an existing agreement for a period of 12 months – Proposition the IMO only had a 3 month life rejected – High Court Judge’s focus on importance of the lack of any review provision, and any review, was correct – Appeal allowed – Declaration clause 8 of IMO was invalid because it modified a statutory provision that did not fall within the scope of s15 EPA.
Anderson v R  NZCA 472
Appeal against sentence of 3 years 1 month imprisonment for cultivating cannabis – A participated in the cultivation of cannabis at three addresses – Appeal on three grounds: (a) A had a limited role in two of the operations; (b) the cannabis was cultivated solely for medicinal use, with very low levels of the psychoactive ingredient (THC); and (c) A’s participation was not for monetary gain, but to obtain high quality medicinal cannabis for the purposes of pain relief and to help manage his mental health issues – A was diagnosed with ADHD, and oppositional defiant disorder but did not like the drug he was prescribed (carbamazepine) because of the its side effects – A also had pain from an enduring shoulder injury he sustained in a machinery accident – HELD: starting point of 3 years 4 months imprisonment was excessive – Category 1 of R v Terewi applied – 18 month starting point appropriate – Appeal allowed – Sentence replaced with 12 months imprisonment.
Trustees of the Totoro Trust, Re  NZCA 469
Appeal from Māori Land Court determination that certain land (Puketiti 2B2B1) was Māori freehold land and not General land – Trustees unable to sell Puketiti 2B2B1 when a Land Information New Zealand pre-validation report identified the land as potentially Māori freehold land – Previous transfer of the land in 1980 had been governed by the since repealed Māori Affairs Act 1953 – At issue was interpretation of provisions of the 1953 Act and their application to the 1980 memorandum of transfer – HELD: in 1980 only L’s interest in land was transferred, not the entire legal estate in Puketiti 2B2B1 – The transfer was erroneously registered as a transfer of the entire fee simple estate which was a breach of s224(1) and the transfer was therefore of no force or effect under the 1953 Act – Subsequent transfers were breaches of s233 and therefore of no force or effect – Appeal dismissed.