Whangarei fisherman Marc Pawley is refusing to pay his motor vehicle registration and licence fee because he argues the laws of New Zealand do not apply to him.
The 53-year-old has received infringement notices on four separate occasions when stopped by police who discovered he had registered his Nissan Terrano to himself until December 21, 2012 and manufactured his own registration plate.
The original number plate verified by the New Zealand Transport Agency expired in October 2009.
Although he had a New Zealand driver's licence, he produced to police a small card often used for Maori identification.
On the fifth occasion, police charged him with using a document for pecuniary advantage, which he denied and elected a jury trial in the Whangarei District Court.
Pawley chose to give evidence yesterday and told the jury that the Land Transport legislation did not stipulate motor vehicles have to be registered with the government entity.
He said all that the relevant legislation and police said that motor vehicles have to be registered but did not say to whom.
Crown prosecutor Moana Jarman-Taylor told the jury in her opening that Pawley had failed to register his vehicle and comply with warrant of fitness so that he could avoid paying a fee.
In explanation, she said Pawley told police he had a private automobile vehicle, that the laws of the country did not apply to him, and that he was not a member of New Zealand society.
Between April 2010 and May 2011, he was stopped four times and issued with infringement notices but he refused to pay the fines.
Senior Sergeant Steve Dickson stopped him on May 31, 2011 on Maunu Rd and noticed the diesel vehicle's registration number, which he later removed, was two small labels on paper that were pasted on the inside of the front windscreen but road-user charges were not displayed.
Pawley said he wrote to the then police district commander for Northland, Superintendent Mike Rusbatch, police prosecutions, Crown Law and to the NZTA, but none could point out specific sections in the relevant legislation that required him to register his vehicle to the agency.
He pointed to the 1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which he claimed was being breached by entities such as the NZTA that required taxpayers to enter into a contract by issuing infringement notices based on laws that were unclear.
A verdict is expected today.