New Zealand Police v YL [2022] NZYC 45

Published 08 February 2022

Unlawful possession of firearm — unlawful possession of ammunition — possession of an objectionable publication — credible threat — Oranga Tamariki Act 1989, ss 4, 4A, 242, 282, 283, 284 & 295. The young person had not denied one charge each of unlawful possession of firearm, unlawful possession of ammunition and possession of an objectionable publication. The first two charges arose as a result of the young person posting a photo of a rifle and ammunition and a photograph of himself on his social media account, which was subsequently deleted. The third charge arose as a result of police finding he had downloaded a video of the terrorist attack on the Al Noor Mosque in Christchurch, which had been classed as an objectionable publication. Communications between the young person and another about conducting a mass shooting were also obtained by police and resulted in a lockdown of the identified school. The Youth Advocate submitted that the young person should be discharged under s 282 of the Oranga Tamariki Act ("the Act") which had the effect of creating no record of the offending. The police submitted that the young person should be subject to an order under s 283(c), with the effect that the young person could be called upon within 12 months so that the Court could take further action under the section. Taking into account the relevant factors under ss 4, 4A and 284 of the Act the Judge determined an order under s 283 was neither necessary nor appropriate. Noting however the concerns of the Police that the young person should be subject to recall, the Judge proposed to defer the final disposition of the case until at least 4 November 2022 and that in the absence of any further offending by the young person he would be discharged under s 282. Leave was reserved to Police and Youth Advocate to bring the matter on earlier. Judgment date: 4 February 2022. * * * Note: names have been changed to comply with legal requirements. * * *