THE charges against the man accused of selling fake scholarships to three people and obtained $10,000 were withdrawn on Monday due to insufficient evidence.
The trial on those three counts of false pretence against John Folia was scheduled to start on Monday before Principal Magistrate Fatima Taeburi.
However, appearing in court on Monday, Public Prosecutor Iete Tebakota made an application to withdraw the three false pretence charges under section 190 (2) (b) (ii) of the Criminal Procedure Code.
He said this is due to insufficient evidence.
Magistrate Taeburi having heard from the prosecution granted his application and had Folia discharged of those charges.
However, under that section, police can reinstate the charges if they collected sufficient evidence in the future.
The three false pretence charges relate to allegations in January 2020, where Folia allegedly obtained a total of $10,000 from three people for scholarship offer letters.
Folia was previously facing four counts of false pretence charges.
He pleaded guilty to one count and had pleaded not guilty to the three charges that were now withdrawn.
Following the withdrawal of the three charges, the court will only deal with one of the false pretence charges he pleaded guilty to.
This is in relation to the incident in January last year, where he obtained $2,000 from a woman.
This victim gave $2,000 to Folia in the hope to secure a scholarship for further studies at the Solomon Islands National University last year.
She never heard from Folia or received any offer letters from the accused until October last year when she lodged her complaint to the police which resulted in Folia’s arrest.
The sentencing submissions and mitigation on this matter will be made in court this Friday.
Public Solicitor’s lawyer George Taedi represents Folia while Police Prosecutor Iete Tebakota appears for the Crown.
By ASSUMPTA BUCHANAN BONGIDANI