High Court Justice John Hansen


Hansen J

Currently retired but has appeared without a judicial warrant on cases since.

Professional Data                  2010 Judge Survey Score (1-10)    Ranking (out of 60)

Postion & Titles:  Retired from bench in 2008, but like a bad dream he keeps coming back
Judge of: High Court, Christchurch, since 1995 Master of the High Court from 1988 to his appointment as Judge in 1995
Specializations and Professional Interests:  Varied and diverse interests.   Retired in 2008, but has come back for temporary bench appointments and was instrumental in bringing the Legal Services Agency (Legal Aid) under control of the judiciary in 2010
Professional Comments:  Prone to take a blinkered approach in proceedings and in his written accounts of proceedings and rulings, providing inordinate focus on the arguments of the litigant (or counsel) he personally fancies.  While unable to apparently separate his personal bias and interests from his arbiter’s job, he still possesses an attentiveness on the bench, as well as an ability to adeptly cut to the heart of issues in dealing with matters before him.  Has perverted law and evidence in several seminal cases that have had a dour effect on personal liberties and equal access to courts, including Brooker v Police, which decision was overturned by the Supreme Court in May 2007.  Could be a good judge if not for his disregard for his oath to do right by all who appear before him. (see further remarks below).
Background / Education: Graduated from the University of Otago with a Bachelor of Laws in 1968. He had joined the law firm of Aspinall, Joel & Co in 1967 and later moved to John E Farry. In 1969 he was made a partner of the firm, now John E. Farry & Hansen. From 1979 to 1988 Justice Hansen was based in Hong Kong sitting as a magistrate, coroner, district court judge, family court judge and High Court master. On return to New Zealand in 1988 he became a master of the High Court and was appointed a judge of the High Court in July 1995. Justice Hansen is based at Christchurch High Court.
Degrees: LLB, Otago 1968
Admitted to the Bar: 1968
Company Involvements:  

Personal Data

Born: 1945 Sex: Male
Married: 19 Children:
Interesting Relationships and Coincidences:  NOT related to High Court judge Rodney Hansen in Auckland.
Miscellaneous: Apparently suffers from a Walter Mitty syndrome, where he variously fantisizes of being a blues musician  or poet, possibly to come to grip with a life where he has demonstrated personal benevolence in private life and a callous, blinkered approach to his professional life.    Covers his face with a beard, but his eyes still demonstrate a cold moral detachment from the decidedly principled judicial role he has taken a perfunctory approach toward.  Has long helped raise money for disadvantaged children through “The Queen’s Street Cricket Club” based in Auckland.