Image: Rob Moodie
Ross Setford  /  AP
Rob Moodie, who changed his name to "Miss Alice," is seen outside court in Wellington, New Zealand, on Jan. 30.
updated 2/14/2007 9:37:28 PM ET 2007-02-15T02:37:28

A male lawyer who appeared in court dressed in women's clothes as a protest against what he said was New Zealand's overly masculine judiciary was suspended Wednesday after being found to be in contempt of court.

The High Court found Rob Moodie, a 68-year-old, balding man who appeared in court in dresses and toting a handbag, was in contempt for circulating suppressed documents outside the court in one of his cases.

Moodie officially changed his name to "Miss Alice" as part of his protest against the "old boys network" that he said runs the nation's judiciary, and was granted an award for the most bizarre conduct by a lawyer in 2006 by London's The Times newspaper.

The protest began after a coroner's inquest largely blamed a farming couple for the collapse of a bridge on their property built by the army.

Moodie obtained documents apportioning much of the blame for the collapse to faulty wood used by New Zealand Defense Force engineers, and posted the report on the Internet despite a judge's order it not be distributed.

The High Court on Wednesday found Moodie guilty of contempt of court, suspended him for three months, fined him and ordered him to pay costs.

Moodie announced after the ruling he would quit the law altogether and end his cross-dressing protest because he no longer needed to appear "in a 19th-century Alice in Wonderland environment that allows pomp, self-importance and deference to the court to eclipse the truth."

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