TRIAL has been vacated yesterday on the case of the juvenile facing a defilement charge, giving him a chance to find another lawyer to represent him.
This was after the juvenile turned up in court yesterday without a lawyer.
His lawyer Stanley Aupai from the Public Solicitor’s Office has gone on leave.
He has requested the court to vacate the trial that was scheduled to start on Tuesday before Principal Magistrate Jim Seuika.
Mr Seuika however, refused to allow the vacation and adjourned the matter to yesterday for trial.
He told the juvenile to find another lawyer from the PSO to assist him in court.
The juvenile however, told the court he did not went to the PSO as he was told by a duty lawyer that the duty lawyer will inform the PSO office.
Mr Seuika told the juvenile it seems no lawyer will represent him and therefore will have to vacate the trial.
Maito’o Hauirae when asked what he has to say on this issue told the court to adjourn the matter to give the accused time to find a lawyer.
He said he understands the court’s concern and this issue is not to be taken lightly but this is for the fairness and justice on the juvenile’s behalf since he is a young offender.
Mr Seuika granted an adjournment to December 7 to allow the juvenile to see any lawyer to represent him.
He said it is unfortunate that the Public Solicitor lawyers are not able to represent the accused.
“I’m not happy with how the defence counsels deal with the cases,” Mr Seuika said.
“I take not of what the prosecutor said that you are a juvenile and needs to be assisted.
“You must understand the process of criminal proceeding which is why I accepted and granted the adjournment to allow you to find another lawyer.” Mr Seuika told the juvenile.
The juvenile was accused of having sexual intercourse with a 11-year-old girl last year at Guadalcanal Plain Palm Oil Limited (GPPOL), East of Honiara.
He is co-accused with another juvenile whom is currently under a warrant of arrest.
The juveniles aged 14 and 15, from Temotu and Western provinces, are facing one count each of defilement.
The alleged victim went to visit her aunt at GPPOL when the incident occurred.
Prosecution alleged the juveniles led the girl to the bush and allegedly committed the offence.
By ASSUMPTA BUCHANAN