Two detained for allegedly printing and circulating counterfeit money.

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BY JENNIFER KUSAPA

TWO men were arrested and remanded in custody yesterday over allegations they printed and circulated fake $100 notes.

Paul Rubin Olofia and Mark Naku were remanded on the grounds they both had no respect to the Central Bank of Solomon Islands as the financial institution in the Solomon Islands having sole right to issue currency notes and coins in the country.

“In acting the way, they did, they disregarded numerous warnings issued to the public on awareness of fake note circulations and they kept on making fake currency notes,” documents investigators presented before the courts say.

The duo were charged for uttering in relation to an alleged incident that occurred on 25 July 2022.

Police said on that particular day at around 9pm both defendants attended to the Titinge area in Honiara, Guadalcanal Province, per car registration T-1613 driven by the co-defendant Mark Naku.

 Upon arrival at Titinge they turned around and parked at a spot and Paul Rubin Olofia approached a nearby canteen owned by the complainant.

At the front counter, the defendant said he wanted a small luncheon meat, defendant Olofia then pulled out a one hundred dollar note and gave it to the canteen owner.

The canteen owner carefully observed the note and discovered it was a fake note.

He turned around and told Olofia that the note is fake.

At this time, Olofia quickly escaped from the canteen.

The complainant rushed out from the canteen and saw the defendant ran pass the parked car that he was travelling inside and disappeared in the dark.

The canteen owner however, approached the driver who is the co-defendant standing in front of the car and told him not to move whilst he contacted and alerted police about the incident.

An hour later police arrived at the scene and located and seized some one hundred dollar fake and counterfeit notes in the possession of the co-defendant Mark Naku.

Police then escorted Mark Naku into the police vehicle and brought him to the Central Police Station.

During a Police recorded interview both the defendants’ made admissions and confessions.

Olofia confessed that he intended to buy a small luncheon meat with a fake 100 dollar note.

He was in possession of 17 x 100 dollars fake notes at that time.

It is alleged that Olofia also admitted to the police that he was responsible for printing the 100 dollars fake notes at his cousin brother’s Printing shop at Ranadi in Honiara.

At one time, he gave one-hundred-dollar notes to his girlfriend to buy fish and chip at Rove fish market.

Prosecution also alleged in their application yesterday that co-defendant Naku also made admission that on three occasions he drove Olofia around town to pay with the 100 dollars fake notes in shops and market stalls.

Both accused were remanded in custody yesterday and will appear again in court in the next 14 days.

Jonathan Auga appears for the crown.


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