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FIJI: High Court dismisses 'no case' defence bid in Fiji Times sedition trial

Fiji Times newsstand ... accused over letter published in sister newspaper Nai Lalakai. Image: Fiji Times

Tuesday, May 8, 2018

Item: 10152

SUVA (Mailife/Pacific Media Watch): The High Court in Suva has ruled against the no-case-to-answer application filed by the defence counsels in The Fiji Times sedition trial.  

The Fiji Times publisher Hank Arts, editor-in-chief Fred Wesley, Nai Lalakai newspaper editor Anare Ravula and Nai Lalakai letter writer Josaia Waqabaca were charged with sedition following the publication of a letter on 27 April 2016 in the Nai Lalakai newspaper that allegedly promoted ill-will and hostility between different ethnic groups of the population of Fiji.

Defence counsels for the four accused filed a motion earlier during the trial that their clients had no case to answer, and questioned the strength of the evidence put forward by the prosecution.

However, High Court judge Justice Thushara Rajasinghe said he was satisfied the prosecution had produced "some evidence for prosecution’"while rejecting the defence’s no case to answer submission.

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