30 Jul 2002

Judge says Fiji treason trial should proceed urgently

5:37 pm on 30 July 2002

The judge assigned to hear the treason trial of Fiji coup accomplices Josefa Nata and Timoci Silatolu says the case should proceed as urgently as possible.

Justice Andrew Wilson says this is because the cost of the pre-trial and trial is enormous and public money is wasted with every hour that goes by.

Justice Wilson's concern was expressed as the Legal Aid Commission asked for yet more time to decide whether it will defend Silatolu as it is doing for Nata.

Silatolu's trial was adjourned abruptly on the first day when his lawyer, Kitione Vuetaki, withdrew from the case after his name was found in coup related documents seized by the police from Nata's home.