Customs officials tampered with evidence claims Defense
January 31, 2019 4:52 pm
Yvette and John Nikolic
The defense lawyers representing an Australian Couple charged for drug-related offenses alleges officials tampered with the evidence.
The defense claims Fiji Revenue and Customs Service officers tampered evidence while raiding Yvette and John Nikolic’s yacht last year.
This was brought to light during the fourth day of trial underway at the Suva High Court today.
Claims have surfaced that customs officers did not wear gloves while searching for suspected drugs on board the Australian couple’s yacht ‘Shenanigans’ in Port Denarau, Nadi.
As a result, the Defence says they haven’t been able to retrieve fingerprints from the bars of cocaine to determine its last handler.
Meanwhile, two more state witnesses took the stand in court to give evidence of what transpired on the day the search was conducted.
Josua Volau, a customs officer informed the court they discovered a properly packed blue bag containing ten bars of white substances, following which, three more bars were discovered – showing the intent to smuggle the drugs.
Amit Ram, another customs officer says a K9 trained dog who was also part of the operation assisted in locating the illegal substances.
The tests conducted on the bars showed a positive result for cocaine hydrochloride.
Yvette and John Nikolic are alleged to have unlawfully imported illicit drugs, arms, and ammunition.
They are jointly charged with two counts each of importing an illicit drug with two alternative counts of possessing an illicit drug.
The trial continues tomorrow.