Man admits sex attack on teen he met outside supermarket

Author
Chelsea Boyle, NZ Herald,
Publish Date
Tue, 2 Feb 2021, 3:28PM
Murray Robertson, 63, speaking to his lawyer. Photo / NZME
Murray Robertson, 63, speaking to his lawyer. Photo / NZME

Man admits sex attack on teen he met outside supermarket

Author
Chelsea Boyle, NZ Herald,
Publish Date
Tue, 2 Feb 2021, 3:28PM

A man who sparked a high-profile manhunt after sexually violating a teenager has admitted five charges on the day of trial.

Murray Robertson, 63, appeared in the Auckland District Court today before Judge Nevin Dawson.

He pleaded guilty to four charges of sexual violation by unlawful sexual connection on or about September 20, 2019.

He also admitted one charge of indecent assault.

Judge Dawson confirmed name suppression for Robertson lapsed today.

Robertson had met the teenage victim in the New World car park in Mt Roskill but the sexual offending happened elsewhere.

The incident was first reported to police that Friday evening, just hours after the 17-year-old was attacked.

Over the weekend officers had reviewed CCTV footage and spoke to witnesses.

Police then appealed to the public for information when seeking to arrest Robertson.

A CCTV image police released during the appeal for information. Photo / NZ Police A CCTV image police released during the appeal for information. Photo / NZ Police

During the search, Detective Inspector Scott Beard had said police were treating the case as "extremely serious" and called Robertson "dangerous".

Judge Dawson said Robertson was now subject to the three strikes law and accepted the Crown's application to move the sentencing to the jurisdiction of the High Court.

The motion was made by prosecutor Fiona Culliney so that the Crown could seek a sentence of preventive detention. Only a High Court could impose an indeterminate punishment.

It is not the first time the Robertson has been convicted for serious sexual offending.

According to a Parole Board report, he had served a 15-year prison sentence due to end on July 25, 2016.

He was released the month prior, subject to standard and special release conditions for six months.

Those conditions included an overnight curfew and required compliance with electronic monitoring.