Court releases man due to delay

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HIGH Court judge Justice Maelyn Bird has sentenced a man for two years but released him at the rising of the court due to substantial delay in the prosecution of the case.

This is in regards to a case that was recently sentenced in Auki during the High Court circuit last week.

Ms Bird said she has noted that there is a period of more than ‘five years delay in the case.

“I have noted with concern the substantial delay in the prosecution of your case.

“The offending occurred on the 24th December 2015, you were committed, to this court on the 8th October 2018. A request to file- information by the high court to the office of the DPP was made on the 5th November 2018.

“The initial information was not filed by the Office of DPP until the 4th March 2019, I have also taken into account that you were remanded in custody for a period of 7 months and 28 days”, Ms Bird said.

She therefore said that after convicting the accused of one count of grievous harm a sentence of two years was imposed.

 “But due to the reasons of delay, the court further ordered for the release of the accused at the rising of the court.

This is the case of 35-year-old Brian Iro Elesia of Orukalia village North Malaita, who was accused of assaulting a 46-year-old man on December 24 2015.

The accused was initially charged with attempted murder, but that charge was amended to grievous harm and the accused entered a guilty plea.

The victim was 46 years old at the time of the incident and is a teacher by profession.

On December 23 2015, the victim left his home at Basakanä Island and went to Auki to do banking as he was a primary school teacher at the Basäkana Primary School.

On December 24 2015, the victim returned from Auki via a 3-ton truck owned by someone from Mbitaama, at that time there were also some passengers in the truck

As they were travelling all of the passengers dropped off and he was the only passenger left in the vehicle.

When they reached Orukalia, the accused stopped the truck and talked to the driver and asked to go to Maluü. At that time, it was around 7 to 7:30pm and it was already dark, the accused then jumped into the truck and they continued their journey.

When they reached Fulifoea, the place where the people of Basakana usually dropped to get across by canoe, both the victim and the defendant dropped. The truck also turned back when they were dropped off.

The defendant helped the victim to unload his belongings from the vehicle and then he asked the victim for a match to light his smoke. The victim gave him his matches and only one handle was in the box; the defendant lit his smoke using that last handle.

The victim then started to argue with the defendant about that matches. The victim then punched the defendant. After that punch, the defendant held a piece of timber from the ground and hit the victim’s head and chest with it and then he left. The victim was unconscious as a result of the assault. The victim’s Wife and children came and assisted him.

The case was then reported to the police in which the accused was charged for the offence.