Lawyer bests Nelson City Council in parking fines skirmish

The District Court win closes the chapter on Tony Stallard's legal career

Lawyer bests Nelson City Council in parking fines skirmish

Stallard Law consultant Tony Stallard has bested the Nelson City Council in a legal battle over parking fines that made it to the Nelson District Court, reported the NZ Herald.

After hearing the case in February, Justice of the Peace David Whyte ruled that the council had not been able to prove beyond reasonable doubt that Stallard was at fault for not paying for parking twice in a city carpark due to the malfunctioning of the parking meter nearest him.

Stallard said to NZME that this was probably his final court appearance. The Herald indicated that the lawyer was headed to Africa.

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In his arguments, Stallard pushed back against the parking bylaw imposed by the council, zeroing in on the presentation of evidence in court. Whyte determined that Stallard possessed the right to demand formal proof of the bylaw.

“On this occasion, the prosecution had not provided formal proof of the bylaw and the court is unable to take judicial notice of the bylaw”, Whyte said in the decision. “Irrespective of the merits of the defence, in the absence of formal proof the prosecution must fail on that point alone”.

Senior council manager Brent Edwards said to NZME outside the court that Whyte’s comment did not suggest that the council had to ensure the functionality of all parking meters.

"No, we just need to bring along the bylaw next time", Edwards said in a statement published by the Herald.

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