Former CDO’s trial set for next year
TRIAL on the matter of the former Constituency Development Officer (CDO) for Temotu Nende Constituency accused of misusing constituency funds has been set for next year.
The dates for the trial was fixed yesterday after a pre-trial conference was conducted on the matter of Philip Tuplo.
Tuplo is facing one count of official corruption, of which, he pleaded not guilty to on a previous court date.
Principal Magistrate Leonard Chite had fixed a tentative trial dates from 7 to 18 February 2022.
Tuplo is charged in relation to an allegation between 6 February 2013 and 19 September 2013.
Prosecution alleged that he misused a total of $58,500 for the payment of Project Materials under the Constituency Fund for Mebialo Housing Project in Santa Cruz.
It was alleged he used the monies to build his personal house.
Tuplo who is also from Mebialo was employed as the CDO for the Temotu Nende Constituency at the commission of the offence.
Charles Gabily Tanhimana of Whitlam K Togamae Lawyers is representing Tuplo while Public Prosecutor Vernon Taupongi appeared yesterday for the Crown.
Lawyer to make no case to answer sub, Fri
A LAWYER representing the man who allegedly faked his own death and then obtained $76,000 from a pharmacist in 2019 will make a no case to answer submission on Friday.
Private lawyer Ben Etomea will present his submissions before Principal Magistrate Felix Hollison on Friday morning.
His client, Peter Fakaia is on trial for three counts of false pretence and one count of attempt to commit false pretence.
Prosecution had called four witnesses at the trial that started in early August.
At the end of the prosecution case, Mr Etomea informed the court they will be making a no case to answer submission.
Fakaia allegedly obtained $76,000 from the pharmacist as compensation after he faked his own death between 21 and 26 September 2019.
Prosecution alleged that on 21 September which was on a Saturday, Fakaia sought medication at the People’s Pharmacy located at Kwaimani Building, Kukum in East Honiara.
Having been allegedly given medication, Fakaia left but then return to the pharmacy the next day complaining of allergies.
He was then given another medication and strongly advised to see a doctor.
On 23 September at about 8am, the complainant received a call through his office phone by a person who allegedly purported himself as the accused’s brother in-law.
The complainant was informed by the accused’s brother-in-law that the accused he diagnosed died at the National Referral Hospital and his body was at the morgue.
The accused’s brother-in-law then allegedly demanded $10,000 compensation for the cause of death.
The complainant in total allegedly gave $76,000 to the so-called relatives of the accused for the accused’s death.
It was on 26 September that the complainant contacted the police after finally realising that he might have been set up by the accused.
The next day, police arrested a person who came to collect the last portion of money requested for the accused’s death.
Using the accused’s alleged associates; police finally arrested the accused after halting him in his vehicle at the Ranadi Roundabout.
Public Prosecutor Jonathan Auga is prosecuting.
Ruling on recalling witnesses in Winwin robbery, Fri
RULING on prosecution’s application to recall their witnesses for voir dire hearing (trial within a trial) on the matter of some of the men accused of robbery at Winwin Mining camp in Guadalcanal will be delivered this Friday.
Public Prosecutor Vernon Taupongi made the application to recall some of prosecution’s witnesses who already gave evidence at the voir dire.
The hearing will be conducted on two of the accused as hearing for another three accused were already completed.
Five of the nine accused are challenging their admission made during the Record of Interview with the police.
Once the voir dire hearing is completed and a ruling delivered, the trial proper on this robbery matter will commence.
Norman Garnita, Martin Maelifanua, Ken Anilava, Harrison Ramo, Olson Seda, Watson Tabaliau, Samo Kabolo, Samson Sake and Greg Hurainima are each facing various charges of armed robbery and impersonating police officer.
This is in relation to the alleged armed robbery incident in the early hours of 9 December 2020 at the Winwin Mining Camp.
It was alleged the accused men entered the mining camp in a G-plated land cruiser and robbed two gold bars, $140,000 in cash and 15 mobile phones.
Some of the men were allegedly wore balaclavas and some of them were allegedly armed with pepper spray.
It was also alleged they wore police sky blue uniform and police t-shirts.
So far only two mobile phones have been recovered.
Lawyers from the Public Solicitor’s Office and Private Lawyer Ben Etomea represent the accused while Public Prosecutor Vernon Taupongi is prosecuting.