A High Court officer who allegedly converted $20,000 of the High Court funds for his own use is likely to go on trial next week, in the Honiara Magistrates’ Court.
Patterson Pou’s trial date was set for January 19 to 23.
Acting Deputy Chief Magistrate Jim Seuika told Pou to return to court on the 19th to know whether or not his trial will proceed.
Magistrate Seuika said Pou’s trial depends on whether the Principal Magistrate Sheppard Lapo resumes work as it was him who set down the date.
Pou is facing one count of embezzlement.
He was accused of converting for his own use $20,000 being funds collected and received by High Court for Security of Cost for civil case number 35/2011, where he was said to have committed the offence by virtue of his employment in Public Service of her Majesty.
Prosecution said evidence the money was received by the High Court without any deposit to the Ministry of Finance implies the completion of the whole offence in terms of Embezzlement.
Police further alleged that on February 24, 2012, Ramo Dausabea deposited $20,000 at the High Court registry for Security Cost in relation to his civil case pending Court of Appeal determination.
Another High Court officer attended Dausabea and issued him with a General Treasury Receipt after paying the money and retained a duplicate copy.
He also signed the receipt with relevant details including the date, amount and purpose.
The money was later refunded by the Solomon Islands Government through Dausabea’s lawyer after he won his civil case.
By ASSUMPTA BUCHANAN