Greg King's kudos reigns supreme, no matter what anyone might think of the verdict in the profile of the Scott Guy murder trial, in a verdict that has seen his appearances in high profile murder cases and appeals reach a new level of public intrigue.
King, who started his practice in Wellington 15 years ago has rapidly occupied the top tier of criminal lawyers, a position now cemented following one of the highest profile criminal trials in New Zealand legal history.While other trials occupied - if not preoccupied - the public, including the Sutch "spy trial", the Bain murders and of course the Allan Arthur Thomas trials, the Scott Guy murder assumed a classic role as a trial that King himself described melodramatically as a "whodunnit".
King has appeared in over 350 criminal jury trials and in three double murder appeals to the Privy Council, including the Scott Watson case in 2003, the Bruce Howse case in 2004 and 2005 and the John Barlow case in 2008 and 2009.
Leave to appeal was granted in both the Howse and Barlow cases. The Privy Council has since 1848 only granted leave in 11 New Zealand criminal appeals.
King was awarded an Eisenhower Fellowship this year and spent almost two months touring much of the US, including attending on lawyers and judges involved in death penalty cases and he wrote various papers (viewed on www.justicehottub.co.nz).The Guy trial where King represented Ewen Macdonald might be seen as a template for successful defence work in many respects.
His cross examination was pointed, particularly his focus on the boot print discrepancies, and his defence brief, with just two witnesses but a carefully structured defence address to the 11-person jury which pointed out the weaknesses in the largely circumstantial prosecution case.