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Suspended MP's lawyer kept out of Nauru

June 23, 2015 6:38 pm

A Nauru Opposition MP, who is one of several MPs facing charges after anti government protests last week, says they are being denied access to their lawyers.

Mathew Batsiua, a former justice minister in Nauru, is on bail and due back in court in the second week of July to face a charge of disturbing the legislature.
Another two MPs are in custody on similar charges, while a fourth has had his passport cancelled.

Mr Batsiua says with the island’s lawyers working for the government the MPs are reliant on pleaders or advocates, and have been seeking qualified lawyers in Australia.

“At the moment there is difficulty for one of them. His visa application has been rejected by the Ministry of Justice – the grounds are quite flimsy in our opinion, but this is a growing concern because if we do try to get proper legal representation in, we fear that the Government will hinder that.”

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All four MPs facing legal action were controversially suspended from Parliament more than a year ago.

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