An appeal by Lord Tu’ilakepa, a former Speaker of the Legislative Assembly of Tonga, against a Magistrate’s ruling to hold separate Preliminary Inquiries for his arms and drugs charges will be heard on 30 January, 2013.
From the Courts
‘Uluaki Falealea Vaka’uta (27) of Ma’ufanga was sentenced to seven years imprisonment for serious offences of housebreaking, theft and causing grevious bodily harm committed from June to July this year in the Nuku’alofa area. Crimes included breaking into Chinese shops, a local joinery business and stabbing a Tongan man at his home.
Leuma La’ulu (52) a Samoan national living in Tonga was sentenced to six and a half years at Hu’atolitoli Prison for indecently assaulting a nine-year-old girl at ‘Utulau in July earlier this year.
A preliminary inquiry in an illegal arms and ammunition case against Lord Tu’ilakepa, a former Speaker of the Legislative Assembly of Tonga, is now anticipated for sometime early next year, depending on the outcome of his appeal lodged on Friday last week.
Lord Tu’ilakepa, a former Speaker of the Legislative Assembly of Tonga who is facing multiple charges of conspiracy to the importation of illicit drugs and illegal possession of firearms, had his case adjourned yet again. He is appealing against a decision by a Magistrate, for the Preliminary Inquiry to be held on 27 November.
The case against the Deputy Speaker of the Legislative Assembly of Tonga Lord Tu’iha’ateiho, who is charged with unlawful possession of a firearm without a license was adjourned to February, 2013.
A Police Constable who is charged with attempting unlawful importation and possession of a controlled drugs together with four Asian nationals, has pleaded not guilty at the Nuku’alofa Supreme Court last week.
Four local companies who were suing their insurance company for cover over damage to their properties in the riots of 16 November 2006, ended their case today on the basis that no party paid costs. The plaintiffs were disappointed to pull out as the evidence in court about the riots favoured the defence position that the riots resulted from “a popular rising, people connected with an organisation the objects of which included influencing the government by violent means and terrorism.”
The Minister of Justice, Hon Clive Edwards told the Nuku’alofa Supreme Court on Friday, November 9, that three businesses, associated with the Prime Minister, the monarchy and their business partners were targeted in violence in central Nuku’alofa on 16 November 2006.
‘Isileli Pulu, who followed a crowd of rioters and witnessed damage to businesses during the 16 November 2006 Nuku’alofa riots, was vigorously questioned on his movements on that day, when he gave evidence in an insurance case heard at the Nuku’alofa Supreme Court yesterday. During the hard questioning the judge warned ‘Isileli that he may not answer any questions if he felt it might incriminate himself.