BY JENNIFER KUSAPA
Court has sent a 27-year-old man guilty of robbery to four years in jail.
Eric Nathaniel Jnr of Malaita province robbed the FJ Shop on December 7, 2018, in Honiara.
In passing sentence, High Court Judge Maelyn Bird yesterday highlighted that Nathaniel Jnr is married with one child and looks after an elderly parent.
However, Ms Bird said, “Resorting to crime in order to care for and maintain your young family is not acceptable and at the age of 27 years you are capable of making ends meet, you must show responsible and respectable way of life for your children.
“The maximum penalty of robbery is life imprisonment but the court has the power to impose sentences depending on the nature of a case.”
She also noted that there are several aggravating features in the offending, that it was premeditated and the accused was prepared well for the robbery.
CCTV footage showed the robbery was conducted with violence and showed how Nathaniel Jnr attacked the complainant with a bush knife.
“You struck the complainant with the knife when he tried to restrain you as a result the complainant sustain injury, the offending was carried out against a business house, the business provided Solomon Islanders employment as shop keepers.
“The business also pays tax to the government and thereby contributed to the country’s economy, and that offending has an adverse effect in the international community and to potential investors, they will see Solomon Islands as unsafe to invest in, what you have done would portray a very bad picture of the country to the international community.”
Therefore, considering the mitigation and sentencing submission from lawyers the court imposed four years in jail and the period spent in custody to be deducted from the four years.
Andrew Kelesi of the Office of the Director Public Prosecution appears for the crown while Rodney Manebosa of the Public Solicitor’s Office represents the accused.