LATE FRIDAY AFTERNOON SUE GREY RECEIVED NEWS THAT THE LAWYERS AND CONVEYANCERS DISCIPLINARY TRIBUNAL HAS STRUCK OUT CHARGES AGAINST HER AND FOUND NO CASE TO ANSWER AS SHE HAD NOT BREACHED PROFESSIONAL STANDARDS.
5 August, 2023
The charges had stemmed from complaints instigated by pro-government lobby group “FACT Aotearoa” who gleefully invited an online orchestrated attack on Sue Grey and on several doctors who challenged the government COVID narrative.
They tried to use lawyers and medical professional bodies to close down free speech of Sue Grey, Dr Anne O’Reilly and other doctors who encouraged people to ask questions and do their own research, including looking at concerns published by NZ regulator Medsafe, rather than rely on claims advertised by Unite Against Covid.
The Tribunal decision recognises the important distinction between a lawyer speaking in their professional capacity, and their personal and political speech.
The Tribunal had no criticism of any of Sue Grey’s legal work and decided it was unfair to hold political posts to the professional standards required for legal services.
None of the complaints were from clients of Grey or from family members of those that have died.
Sue Grey lodged supporting affidavits from Rory Nairn’s father Brett Nairn who lost his 26 year old son to the vaccine and from Aly Cook, the well known musician and Outdoors and Freedom Party board member whose 26 year old son has chronic vaccine induced myocarditis.
Aly Cook has subsequently lodged a petition to parliament with over 24 000 signatures seeking a Royal Commission of Inquiry into Vaccine injuries, supported by 1440 pages of submission evidence. To date this public interest petition has been largely ignored by both Parliament and by state funded media
The Tribunal decided it is not qualified to make findings on the safety or otherwise of the vaccine. However it does recognise the important public interest in talking about controversial issues, and the need for balance, recognising that while some may have been distressed by Grey raising issues of suspected vaccine death and injury:
“At the same time, we also recognise the distress of those who felt their concerns were not heard. These people include the family of a young man who, the Coroner has ruled, has died because of complications from the vaccine.“
In the context the judges stated:
 Ms Grey is an experienced Nelson-based lawyer who practices in the field of public law, with an emphasis on human rights, resource management law and medico-legal matters.
 As well as her legal qualifications, Ms Grey holds a science degree with majors in microbiology and biochemistry, as well as a Royal Society of Health Diploma in Public Health Inspection.
During the case Sue Grey referred the tribunal to the words of Sir Geoffrey Palmer in 2007 in recommending, on behalf of the Law Commission, the repeal of the law of seditious offenses. In stating that,
“they have been used to fetter vehement and unpopular political speech”, Sir Geoffrey, arguably the country’s foremost constitutional lawyer provided this pithy analysis:
“In a free and democratic society, defaming the government is the right of every citizen. In times beset with threats of terrorism we should not close the open society. To do so will only encourage its enemies. In New Zealand, free speech and public debate must be “uninhibited, robust and wide open”, and it may include “vehement, caustic and sometimes unpleasantly sharp attacks on government and public officials”
While the Tribunal disagreed with some of the strong language on the Outdoors and Freedom Party Facebook posts they acknowledged that many of the criticised posts could not be attributed to Sue Grey and said:
in the end we consider that freedom of expression must be jealously guarded and that lawyers, within limits, must not be fearful of saying unpopular things. If that were to occur, they might be dampened or restricted in their role in advancing the democratic rights of their clients.
Sue Grey commented
“I am very pleased with the decision and the recognition of the importance of free speech in New Zealand. I hope that this encourages more professionals to ask questions and to call out censorship and harassment. It’s been a shocking period of history for freedom of speech and our other rights and freedoms. I’m proud to have stepped up and spoken out about the many red flags that were obvious in the COVID response from early 2020. I’m glad this is behind me now so I can focus on my campaign for winning the West Coast Tasman seat and my work as co-leader of the New Zealand Outdoors party and Co-leader of the FreedomsNZ umbrella party, along with continuing to serve my clients’ needs to the best of my abilities. “
A copy of the findings of the tribunal is here.