Defence Force challenging prosecution over soldier’s training exercise death

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Nicholas Kahotea joined the New Zealand Army in January 2006, as a Royal New Zealand Engineer. (File photo)

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Nicholas Kahotea joined the New Zealand Military in January 2006, as a Royal New Zealand Engineer. (File photograph)

The New Zealand Defence Pressure is difficult a call that opens the door for prosecution over the loss of life of Lance Corporal Nicholas Kahotea throughout a coaching train.

Kahotea, 35, fell about eight metres from a helicopter whereas participating counterterrorism coaching train on the military’s high SAS coaching facility within the south Auckland in Might 2019. He later died at Auckland Metropolis Hospital.

WorkSafe charged the Defence Pressure with failing, as far as fairly practicable, to make sure his security.

The Defence Pressure tried to cease the prosecution within the District Courtroom, however a choose stated it might proceed.

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In Wellington on Monday the Defence Pressure requested a Excessive Courtroom choose to overview that call.

Kahotea was farewelled with a funeral at the Papakura Military Camp. (File photo)

NZ ARMY/SUPPLIED

Kahotea was farewelled with a funeral on the Papakura Navy Camp. (File photograph)

The Excessive Courtroom utility targeted on the Chief of Defence Pressure making a declaration exempting a class of coaching from the Well being and Security at Work Act and the Defence Pressure sustaining the coaching Kahotea was participating in was inside that class of counterterrorism response.

In Might 2019, the Defence Pressure held a counterterrorism coaching train with particular operation forces from the USA Armed Forces. The train was to develop New Zealand’s Particular Operation Forces (NZSOF) counterterrorism functionality.

Kahotea, an skilled member of the SAS, was participating in a joint train with the US army which concerned exiting a Black Hawk helicopter at evening.

He exited the helicopter throughout a touchdown drill to entry the roof of a constructing.

Black Hawk helicopters from United States forces were used in the exercise during which Nicholas Kahotea died.

Ilia Yefimovich/Getty Photographs

Black Hawk helicopters from United States forces had been used within the train throughout which Nicholas Kahotea died.

“The Black Hawk helicopter made contact with the sting of a constructing wall ledge throughout a bump touchdown drill with one in every of its foremost touchdown wheels hovering able whereas troops exited on to the constructing or ledge from the aspect,” Decide Jane Lovell-Smith stated in her District Courtroom choice.

As Kahotea stepped out of the helicopter he fell about eight metres on to concrete earlier than he tragically died in hospital, the judgment learn.

Kahotea joined the Military in 2006 as a Royal New Zealand Engineer, with an preliminary posting to the first New Zealand Particular Air Service Regiment as a specialist searcher in 2008.

He efficiently accomplished NZSAS choice and was badged as an NZSAS operator in December 2014. He additionally served in Afghanistan.

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