A MAN from Bougainville, Papua New Guinea, accused of illegally possessing a firearm has been discharged of the offence, Tuesday.
This was after the prosecution made an application to withdraw the charge against Dilys Tulosoi.
Public Prosecutor John Wesley Zoze applied to have the matter withdrawn under section 190 (2) (b) (ii) of the Criminal Procedure Code due to insufficient evidence.
This is for the accused to be discharged of the charge while waiting for the police to fish for evidence.
Under this section, the police can reinstate the charge against Tulosoi once they have sufficient evidence against him.
When asked as to what evidence they would need to find given that police cannot find any evidence against Tulosoi since last September, Zoze said police are collecting information.
He added that police are going to give prosecution those information and that they will be returning the file to the police.
Ron Dickey Pulekera of Public Solicitor’s Office on the other hand however, asked the court to have Tulosoi acquitted under section 190 (2) (b) (i) of the Criminal Procedure Code.
He asked Magistrate Fatima Taeburi to have his client acquitted.
Pulekera further submitted that after the pre-trial conference, they found there was no evidence relating the gun in the bag of his client.
He said the matter was then adjourned after that finding to allow the investigators to follow up on that but until then the issue remains the same.
He said another magistrate who heard the matter then had to direct the prosecution to decide as to whether or not to proceed with the matter.
A memo was then sent to the Director of Public Prosecutions, who endorsed it which resulted in the discharge yesterday.
Taeburi however, in light of the defence submission, said section 190 of the CPC does not give her any authority to discharge or acquit any defendant on her own initiative.
“I can only withdraw a case under section 190 of the CPC upon the application from a prosecutor,” Taeburi said.
She then withdraw the accused under the section submitted by the prosecution and had Tulosoi discharged.
“The police may reinstate this case if the evidence is made available to them,” Taeburi said.
Dilys Tulosoi was charged with one count of possession of firearms and ammunition without licence.
He was allegedly on his way to Guadalcanal Plains Palm Oil Limited (GPPOL area) on 18 September 2018, when a police vehicle pulled him over at a market stall at Henderson area and arrested him over the alleged gun offence.
By ASSUMPTA BUCHANAN