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INQUEST ORDERED

TWO MISSING MEN.

KOPUAWHARA VICTIMS. BODIES NOT RECOVERED. (By Telegraph.— Own Correspondent.) WAIROA, this day. Although their bodies have never l>een recovered, instructions have l>een received by the coroner, Mr. V. E. Winter, to copduct an inquest on Ivan Martinac and Roderick Douglas Xeish, who were among the victims of the Kopuawhara disaster on February 10, when the No. 4 railway construction camp was overwhelmed by flood waters, an<l 21 people, including a young woman, were swept to their deaths. The bodies of 19 of flie victims were recovered, and inquests were concluded some time ago. A diligent search was made for the other two bodies, but no trace of them has ever been discovered. It is surmised that they were either buried in silt, which covered practically the whole cf the Kopuawhara Valley to a depth of many feet, or carried out to sea.

The instructions for the holding of inquests without the bodies have been issued by the .Solicitor-General, Mr. H. V. Cornish, un<ler section three of the Coroners Amendment Act, 1930. In a letter to the coroner, the„ Crown Solicitor at Wellington states that it is not usual to direct the holding of an inquest pursuant to section three unless there are grounds for believing that such a course is necessary either in the public interest or for some private purpose which may properly be entertained. In the present case any matter of public interest would have been investigated at the inquests touching the deaths of the others drowned in the catastrophe, and it did not appear that any question of succession of property arose. Nevertheless, in the peculiar circumstances in thi* case, it was considered a proper on© for the holding of an inquest.

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https://paperspast.natlib.govt.nz/newspapers/AS19380704.2.154

Bibliographic details

INQUEST ORDERED, Auckland Star, Volume LXIX, Issue 155, 4 July 1938

Word Count
290

INQUEST ORDERED Auckland Star, Volume LXIX, Issue 155, 4 July 1938

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