Charges withdrawn, dismissed
Businessman Ututa’aloga Charlie Ulia is a free man.
He and eight other defendants walked from the Supreme Court on Monday after charges against them were withdrawn and dismissed.
The owner of Ulia Construction Company faced a charge of intentional damage in relation to an incident at Afega last year where the complaint’s fence was allegedly destroyed by the defendants following a dispute.
Ututa’aloga and the other defendants were then charged with one count of intentional damage, with the maximum penalty a jail term not exceeding 14 years.
Scheduled for hearing on Monday, the matter was called before Justice Mata Tuatagaloa.
However, lawyer, Ofisa Tagaloa representing the National Prosecution Office, made an application to the Court for the charges to be withdrawn and dismissed.
He said the matter had been resolved between the two parties and that the complainant wanted to withdraw the charges.
He did not elaborate.
Defence lawyer, Te’o Richard Faaiuaso, did not object to the application.
Justice Tuatagaloa then granted the application to withdraw and dismiss the charges against Ututa’aloga and others.
In a separate matter before the District Court, the businessman has pleaded not guilty to two charges of assault and one charge of uttering insulting words. Judge Vaepule Vaai has adjourned the hearing for 16 September 2016.