Trial on Katalake’s case continues

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BY JENNIFER KUSAPA

TRIAL into the case against Malia Katalake and two others continues at the Honiara Magistrate Court today.

Peter Rockson and Junior Moris Bolas are co-accused with Malia Katalake.

This is the matter against Malia Katalake who is currently facing counts in relation to fraudulent falsification, false pretences and embezzlement.

Ms Katalake is a former employee of the Solomon Tropical Product, and was working as a plant manager when the alleged incident occurred.

She is charged with two other co-accused her husband Peter Rockson, 30, of Lord Howe, Malaita Outer Island and 29-year-old Junior Morris Bolas from Choiseul.

Rockson faces four counts of receiving and soliciting while Bolas faces seven counts of receiving.

Ms Katalake was responsible for receiving copra from local farmers, scaling and writing on receivable company document (copra inspections and payment forms) for farmers who came from the province.

The allegation said that between January 1, 2008 and June 21, 2008 Malia and Bolas made up false copra payments sheet under the ghost name Sisi David and fraudulently withdrawn a total of $152,570.80 from the company.

Police alleged Malia was the mastermind of the company scandal and she at her own discretion before submitting to the office receptionist to have them calculate and raise the payment according to what names appear on the copra sheet.

Most payments were alleged to have been done on cheques at the National Bank of Solomon Islands now the Bank of South Pacific and Malia and Bolas were the ones who collected and cashed the cheques at the Bank.

The matter was reported to police by the complainant John Vollrat who is the general manager of the Solomon Tropical Products, a company that deals with local farms by purchasing, processing and exporting of copra.

Office of the Director Public Prosecution appears for the state.