Police disappointed over court decision

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Commissioner of Royal-Solomon Island Police Force Matthew Varley
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BY JENNIFER KUSAPA

ROYAL Solomon Islands Police Force Commissioner has raised disappointment over the decision made by the Magistrate Court yesterday morning on the corruption case against a Member of Parliament.

Commissioner Matthew Varley speaking to the media yesterday said whilst police acknowledge and respect the decision, they were also disappointed in the outcome.

“We have to look closely on the reasons to see where this case filed but I guess the important point I would make is that our investigators did their very best and they did their best with the evidence that was available and they put the evidence before the court and is tested and then obviously at the end of the day the Magistrate has the presiding authority makes the decision,” Mr Varley said.

He said the outcome of the case is ‘obviously disappointing’.

“I don’t want to say that this is a setback but I would say it’s a significant disappointment.

“We believe that the case is strong and indeed that’s the reason the case is taken to court following a careful investigation and careful advice from the DPP’S office,” Varley said.

He said in such cases quite a standard of proof has to be met in any criminal case and obviously standard proof is beyond reasonable doubt, and in this case the magistrate found that those offences were not proven beyond reasonable doubt.

“We have heard the verdict of the court this morning in relation to the corruption case and the first thing I have to say is, this is the justice system in process and we obviously respect and heard the decision of the court,” Varley said

Meanwhile, Varley said police still have a series of investigation on their books, and this was the first major case, which tests the police on their investigation and procedures.

Varley adds that police would not prosecute a case unless they have a strong case, and the case which had just been scrapped was considered one of their strong cases.

“There will be no doubt that some people will say police got it wrong.

“With respect I would say we did our best with the evidence available,” Varley added.

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