Court clears son of charges - Solomon Star News

Court clears son of charges

12 August 2014

CHARLES against a man accused of obstructing Government officers on duty at one of the flood evacuation centres in Honiara have been cleared.

This is due to insufficient evidence against the accused Eddie Agooka.

Principal Magistrate Shepherd Lapo freed Eddie of the six counts of refusing to cooperate with government officers during the state of emergency and another six counts of obstructing government officers in due execution of their duties.

His mother Linda will appear in the Honiara Magistrate Court again on August 25 for the court to give its ruling as to whether her case will also be cleared or whether police still have a chance to carry out further investigation.

Linda is facing similar charges as her son.

She was charged under the National Disaster Council Act.

These were for allegations between April 10 and April 30, this year at the evacuation centre at the Festival of Pacific Arts (FOPA) at Panatina, East Honiara.

She was alleged to be a member of the Centre Internal Committee.

Police alleged that Linda refused to speak to government officers who went to the evacuation centre and have also allegedly influenced the flood victims at the centre to do the same.

Police Prosecutor Ronnie Pisei made an application to have all charges against Linda to be withdrawn under section 190 (2) (b) (ii) of the Criminal Procedure Code (CPC) so that police can reinstate the charges when they have enough evidence against her.

He then added they will however continue to prosecute one count of obstructing government officers in due execution of their duties against Linda.

Private Lawyer Leslie Kwaiga, who represented Linda, however applied for an acquittal in all the charges against Linda except for that one charge police said will maintained.

For that particular charge Mr Kwaiga applied to have it withdrawn under section 190 (2) (b) (ii) of the CPC.

He said that is the appropriate thing to do since there was no evidence to prove the charges.

By Assumpta Buchanan