Prime Minister John Key has dismissed calls for an independent review commission of criminal cases.

There has been mounting pressure to add another layer of review to the criminal appeals process following the successful appeals of David Bain and Mark Lundy to the Privy Council. The Privy Council was replaced by the New Zealand Supreme Court in 2004.

It had been proposed that New Zealand mirror the English Independent Criminal Review Commission. However, this proposal has been rejected on the basis that once their avenue of appeals through the Courts is extinguished, convicted criminals can apply to the Governor General for a pardon under the royal prerogative of mercy.