20 Jan 2005

Fiji public prosecutor angered by coup convict's release

7:30 am on 20 January 2005

The office of Fiji's director of public prosecutions is reported to have been angered by the early release of yet another coup convict.

Fiji's commissioner of prisons, Aisea Taoka, has released Viliame Savu after only five months of his one-year sentence.

Savu was convicted of taking an illegal oath to become a purported minister in George Speight's failed administration during the coup.

The deputy director of public prosecutions, Peter Ridgeway, has told Fiji TV he only learnt of Savu's release through the media.

Mr Ridgeway says since Savu was serving a 12-month sentence, he shouldn't have been due for release for another four months.

Mr Ridgeway says he's surprised that anyone in good conscience could reach the decision Mr Taoka had, and he's urged him to reconsider it.

Mr Taoka is quoted as saying he receives applications from coup prisoners everyday and that's their right.