Tongan appointed as Acting District Court Judge in New Zealand

Auckland barrister Mina Wharepouri, who has Tongan and Maori heritage has been appointed an Acting District Court Judge  to be based in Manukau.

The appointment was announced by Attorney-General Christopher Finlayson QC on Tuesday.

Wharepouri commenced his career with Kensington Swan in 1995.

He moved to Russell McVeagh in 1997 where he was counsel for several Māori claimants in proceedings in the High Court and Court of Appeal.

Between 2003 and 2011 Wharepouri worked for Meredith Connell leading District Court and High Court jury trials. He also trained police in matters relating to evidence and prosecution.

In 2012 Wharepouri became a barrister sole appearing regularly in District Court and High Court trials.

Judge Wharepouri, who  will be sworn in on 1 June 2016 in Manukau.

His mother is Melenaite Vaka, the daughter of Tēvita Vaka and Vinola Cook of Helemonga, Kolomotuʻa in Tongatapu, Tonga.

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