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Discussion on Defence witness to take stand underway

May 10, 2018 12:32 am

Fiji Times Lawyer Wylie Clarke and Assistant DPP Lee Burney have taken a break to discuss whether Clarke’s witness, and i-Taukei language expert, Paul Geraghty can take the stand in the Fiji Times sedition trial case.

Clarke said that Geraghty will not be speaking as an expert but simply just to translate the letter from the i-Taukei to the English language.

Burney says Geraghty has nothing to do with the case and that the court does not need his expert opinion, as only the opinions of the assessors and the Judge matters.

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Clarke then said that Geraghty should be able to translate the letter as the Permanent Secretary for i-Taukei Affairs, Naipote Katonitabua also gave his opinion on the letter.

High Court Judge, Justice Thushara Rajasinghe said that it was rightful for Katonitabua to give his opinion as he was the one that lodged the complaint on the letter and has relevance to the case.

Fiji Times Limited publisher Hank Arts and writer Josaia Waqabaca have pleaded not guilty to sedition, while Fred Wesley and Anare Ravula have pleaded not guilty to aiding and abetting sedition.

It is alleged that the Fiji Times printed the Nai Lalakai newspaper which contained an article which had content with seditious intention to promote feelings of ill will and hostility amongst the population of Fiji, particularly Muslims and Non-Muslims.

The trial continues.

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