Appeal case will impact charges on Djokovic, his lawyer argues

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AN appeal currently before the Court of Appeal will have some impact on current charges against the Prime Minister’s chief of staff Robson Djokovic.

Djokovic’s lawyer Wilson Rano relayed this to deputy chief magistrate Ricky Iomea when his client appeared in court yesterday.

Rano is appealing a High Court ruling that declared Djokovic a non-citizen because he currently holds an Australian passport.

The High Court ruled although Djokovic is an indigenous Solomon Islander by birth, he was not a citizen.

Rano is challenging that ruling, arguing since Djokovic is an indigenous Solomon Islander by birth, he becomes a citizen.

Djokovic’s mother is from Choiseul, while his father is an Australian.

Rano told the Magistrate Court yesterday if the Court of Appeal ruling goes in favour of his client, it will have some impacts on the charges against Djokovic.

He requested a 28-day adjournment while the Court of Appeal deals with the case this week. Iomea granted the adjournment to June 16.

A direction hearing of the appeal case was conducted yesterday, and Rano said he would update the court on the progress of the hearing.

Rano also confirmed receiving the disclosures from prosecution, adding he will advise the crown on their position regarding the charges.

He also requested that his client be excused from appearing in person in court on the next appearance date.

Meanwhile, Deputy Public Prosecutor Andrew Kelesi informed the court that full disclosures have been served to the defence on Tuesday afternoon.

Djokovic is facing three counts under the Electoral Act 2018 and the Political Party Integrity Act.

They are:

  1. Obtaining registration by false pretense Contrary to Section 311 of the Penal Code.
  2. Fraudulent Voting Contrary to Section 120 (c) of the Electoral Act 2018.
  3. Prohibition of a non-citizen from membership of a Political Party Contrary to section 41 (1) of the Political Parties Integrity Act 2014.

Prior to the current case, Djokovic was President of Our Party.

He was accused of having registered to vote, and actually voted in the last election.