New Zealand courts thrown into disarray as a third of country’s top judges fall ill during luxury château break

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By Thomas Connelly on

Gastro bug sweeps through Kiwi judiciary


Over a third of New Zealand’s top judges have fallen ill during a weekend conference held at a luxury château, throwing the country’s court system into meltdown.

Of the 53 Supreme, Appeal and High Court justices in attendance at the four star Château Tongariro Hotel last Friday, 18 were suddenly struck down with a mysterious gastro bug.

The country’s top legal minds had gathered at the £200-a-night retreat to attend a legal conference, but unfortunately appear to have spent most of it on the toilet.

As a result of the mass illness, the High Court in Wellington confirmed that at least three Court of Appeal sittings were cancelled as well as one High Court hearing. “Unforeseen circumstances” were blamed.

With hotel management remaining tight-lipped over the incident, a spokesperson for New Zealand’s judicial office did confirm that a number of judges had been struck-down with a “short-lived gastro bug” having attended the conference.

Meanwhile local health inspectors are on the case. A spokeswoman for Waikato Population Health confirmed that interviews with château staff and judges would take place shortly, to ascertain the cause of the widespread illness.