New twist in hearing

The sentencing of a man and a woman who rented vehicles from a local company and then sold them has been adjourned, yet again. This time, Vaioleti Stowers and New Zealander, Grant Newman Holland, will be sentenced on 27 January 2016.

The decision was made by Justice Elizabeth Aitken of the Supreme Court due to a request from Holland’s lawyer, Alex Su’a, who asked the Court for some time to go through information regarding his client’s case.  Defence Counsel Su’a said he was asked to represent Holland yesterday, despite the fact that Holland represented himself during trial and told the Court that his lawyer was a New Zealander practicing in Samoa.

Both accused appeared on Wednesday, 16 December, for sentencing, however Holland asked for an adjournment, for his lawyer to be present.  When Su’a appeared yesterday, he told the Court he only received instructions in the morning.

“I am overwhelmed by the summary of facts and I have no idea of where proceedings are,” he said. Justice Aitken told the defence counsel to use her decision on the trial to assist him.  “It was most helpful to have a lawyer present during Holland’s sentencing.” 

The principal defendant, Vaioleti Stowers, wanted her sentence delivered yesterday.

However, her lawyer Alalatoa Rosella Papali’i preferred both defendants to be sentenced together. Justice Aitken agreed and said it was better for both defendants to be sentenced together.  Both defendants will be sentenced at 12:30pm on 27 January, 2016.

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