* Fake scholarship case, Tuesday
* Man who sets fire to house jailed
Fake scholarship case, Tuesday
MITIGATION and sentencing submissions on the case of the man who obtained $2,000 from a woman for a scholarship award last year will be made in the Honiara Magistrate’s Court on Tuesda y.
John Folia had pleaded guilty to one count of false pretence at a previous court hearing.
He was previously facing other three false pretence charges but those charges were however withdrawn due to insufficient evidence on the day trial was supposed to start last week.
He is now left with only one count that he had already pleaded guilty to which relates to the incident in January last year.
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, however, never heard from Folia or received any offer letters from him until October last year when she lodged her complaint to the police which resulted in Folia’s arrest.
Public Solicitor’s lawyer George Taedi represents Folia while Police Prosecutor Iete Tebakota appears for the Crown.
Man who sets fire to house jailed
A MAN who burnt down a dwelling house belonging to a family at Moli Village in Central Islands Province in 2016 has been sentenced to one a half years in prison.
This was after Benjamin Manukama, 30, pleaded guilty to one count of arson recently in the Honiara Magistrate’s Court.
Principal Magistrate Fatima Taeburi in her sentencing remarks said in her view, burning a dwelling house is more serious compared to burning a building used for other purposes other than human residence.
“The prisoner runs the risk that someone is inside the house and that his actions could cause the loss of human lives,” Magistrate Taeburi said.
She also considered the loss to the complainant and his family.
She said in almost all cases, a dwelling house is where a family keeps their life possessions and properties.
“There is no doubt that this family lost all their life belongings in the fire.
“It has been agreed that the family suffered a financial loss of $1,000.”
Taeburi said in her view, there are some family possessions that one cannot express its true value in monetary terms.
“I also consider the hardships that the complainant and his family have to endure to rebuild their lives after the incident.
“I consider there was pre-meditation.
“The prisoner came to the complainant’s house with a half-lit fire-wood.
“He had the necessary intention and he had pre-planned his move.”
Before handing the sentence, Magistrate Taeburi also took into account the accused’s early guilty plea, he has no criminal history and he was 26 years old when he committed the offence.
The court had heard that Manukama was arrested on 4 July 2016 for the arson offence which was committed on 9 June 2016.
It was heard that he was bailed by the police to appear in the Honiara Magistrate’s Court on 5 July 2016, but had failed to appear on that day.
A warrant of arrest was issued for him on the same day and it was pending execution for several years until he was finally located by the police, arrested on the warrant and brought to court this year.
Manukama’s lawyer had argued that the delay should be considered in his client’s favour but Magistrate Taeburi had disagreed given the above reasons.
She said the delay in the prosecution of this case for about four years and eight months is caused by the prisoner.
Frank Brennan Kama of Public Solicitor’s Office represents Manukama while Public Prosecutor Steward Tonowane appeared for the Crown.