Appeal in N.P.O. case set for re-mention
The appeal against Judge Fepulea’i Ameperosa Roma’s decision to acquit the suspended Director of the National Prosecution Office, Mauga Precious Chang, of traffic related charges will be called for re-mention next Monday.
The decision was made by the Supreme Court this week when the matter was called.
Kirstin Kruse appeared on behalf of New Zealand-based independent prosecutor for the A.G’s Office, Satiu Simativa Perese.
Representing Mauga was the former Attorney General Aumua Ming Leung Wai and Queen’s Counsel Aaron Perkins.
Both counsels were ready to set a hearing date.
The Chief Justice, His Honour Patu Tiava’asu’e Falefatu Sapolu suggested that the earliest hearing date is the week commencing 11 July 2017.
“What about Tuesday 11th of July and if that is not possible then Wednesday 12th of July,” he said.
But Aumua requested for an earlier hearing date and informed Chief Justice of Mr. Aaron Perkins QC’s unavailability.
“With all due respect Sir, Mr. Perkins will not be available during that time sir,” Aumua said.
“I have been informed by Mr. Perkins that he will not be available from the 5th of June up until the 25th of August.”
He also informed the Chief Justice that Mr. Perese’s estimated of one day hearing is too long as half a day will suffice.
But Chief Justice told Aumua that the earliest available dates are the week commencing the 10 July 2017.
“In terms of the list of available dates before me now I cannot give an earlier date, the earliest is the week commencing the 10th of July.”
Ms. Kruse told the Court that any other date is suitable for Mr. Perese except for 12 April.
“I have been told that Mr. Perese is not available on the 12th of April but any other date is suitable for him.”
Chief Justice then adjourned the matter for re-mention next week.
“Okay I will adjourn this matter to Monday next week at re-mention at 10am,” said His Honour Patu/
“This is for counsels to liaise with the registrar whether there can be an earlier date than July. And I think it might be best to not set a fixed hearing date for the matter.”