BY JENNIFER KUSAPA
THE trial into the case against an accused in the health ministry scandal has been vacated and will appear again for possible plea on Friday.
This is due to the change of legal representation.
The case was listed for trial this week however the defence lawyer who represented the accused, John Biliki, withdrew his assistance and re-allocated the case to another lawyer.
Mr Biliki was earlier represented by George Gray of the Public Solicitor’s Office but due to other reasons the case has been re-allocated to Michael Holara.
Chief Justice Sir Albert Palmer adjourned the case and remanded the accused in custody.
Biliki, 45, of Choiseul is facing counts of false pretence and counts of money laundering.
This are in relation to the $10million scandal in the Ministry of Health and Medical Service.
Biliki’s co-accused, a taxi driver labelled as the toy boy in this scandal was already sentenced in 2014 for defrauding the government of $1.5 million.
Biliki was accused of defrauding the government of $7.3 million between January 1, 2002 and September 20, 2013.
Prosecution alleged he colluded with some public officers from the Ministry of Health and Medical Services (MHMS) and defrauded the Solomon Islands Government (SIG) on 15 occasions.
Prosecution also alleged Biliki registered and operated a shipping agent called Eroba Shipping Services and allegedly assisted to set up Joke Shipping Services – a shipping agent reportedly set up purposely to claim payments from the government.
These shipping services were allegedly being used by Biliki and his associates and some officers from the MHMS to get several payments for shipping of clinic materials to the various projects sites in the provinces, which were never done.
The accused and his cohorts allegedly claimed payments from the SIG with fictitious services, or services that were never provided.