A BANGLADESH national who has been charged for fraudulent voting during the National General Election in April has been released on bail, Thursday.
Mia Mohammad Abdul Latif was brought to the Honiara Magistrates’ Court on Thursday and was released on a cash bail of $7,000.
He is yet to pay his cash bail since his matter was brought to the court after 4pm.
Latif was therefore given time until today to pay up his cash bail.
Deputy Chief Magistrate Ricky Iomea also imposed strict bail conditions, of which, one of them is for Latif to surrender his passport.
Latif is restricted to leave Honiara town boundary, he is not to re-offend whilst on bail, he is not to interfere with police witnesses and he is to report twice a week to the Central Police Station.
Police arrested Latif on Wednesday following an allegation on 3 April this year.
Prosecution alleged Latif whom is not a Solomon Islands citizen cast his vote during the election at Loina in North Malaita.
A police statement yesterday also confirmed that investigators of the Royal Solomon Islands Police Force (RSIPF) have formally charged a 40-year-old man yesterday for alleged fraudulent voting during the recent National General Election.
RSIPF Assistant Commissioner Crime (AC) and Intelligence, Ian Vaevaso confirmed the arrest through the Police Media Unit.
“A 40-year-old man has been formally charged today for fraudulent voting following his arrest yesterday (8 May 2019).
He explains: “Investigators from the National Criminal Investigation Department (NCID) have arrested the man who is believed to be foreigner who allegedly cast his vote on 3 April 2019 in one of the constituencies in Malaita Province, but without gaining any Solomon Islands citizen status.
“The allegation the man is facing caries a hefty penalty of around fifty thousand dollars fine, or five years imprisonment or both if found guilty by the court.”
He adds: “The arrest comes about after an extensive investigation into the allegation which was referred to the RSIPF by the Solomon Islands Electoral Commission.”
“This is an example of the RSIPF’s commitment to combat fraud and corruption in the electoral system of Solomon Islands,” says AC Vaevaso.
“I acknowledge the efforts of my detectives and the assistance from the public in providing information to assist with this investigation.”
The foreigner is expected to appear before the Honiara Central Magistrates Court this afternoon (9 May) on a charge of Fraudulent Voting pursuant section 120 of the Electoral Act 2018.
The L & L Lawyers is representing Latif while the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions appeared for the Crown.
By ASSUMPTA BUCHANAN