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Prosecutors pictured wearing fake breasts and tinsel wigs



Three prosecutors involved in a s_x abuse case in the Pitcairn Islands have been pictured wearing fake breasts and tinsel wigs.

Prosecutor Simon Moore, his assistant Christine Gordon and magistrate Gray Cameron were photographed on a charter boat returning from Pitcairn Island.

The picture, which appeared in the New Zealand press, was taken after an initial hearing against seven men charged with sexual offences against women and girls.

Moore, Gordon and Cameron said they put on the costumes as part of a shipboard "ritual". They said it would have been "rude" if they had refused the captain's invitation to take part.

The Pitcairn Island case involves seven men on the tiny, isolated island, in the mid-Pacific Ocean, which has a population of just 44.

New Zealand is conducting the trial - which begins next month - on behalf of Britain, which administers the island.

Moore, who apologised to anyone offended by the photographs, is one of New Zealand's top criminal prosecutors. Cameron had been presiding magistrate, but is no longer involved in the trial.

Auckland lawyer Paul Dacre, acting for the seven Pitcairn men, said he would talk to his clients about whether they will seek to take legal action over the matter.

In Wellington, a spokesman for the British High Commission, said the pictures did not compromise the prosecution.

The rocky outcrop was settled more than 200 years ago by mutineers led by Fletcher Christian from the HMS Bounty