19 Nov 2005

Fiji government senator freed from jail

7:21 am on 19 November 2005

The convicted Fiji government senator, Mohammed Apisai Tora, has been given an early release from prison under a Compulsory Supervision Order.

Tora and 12 others were jailed for eight months in September on a charge of illegal assembly for seizing a military checkpoint and setting up a roadblock near Nadi International Airport at the height of the coup.

But while the others were released to serve their sentences extra-murally, Tora's application failed.

His release on a Compulsory Supervision Order on medical grounds is similar to the early release of the convicted former vice president, Ratu Jope Seniloli, who was serving a four-year sentence for taking an illegal oath to usurp the presidency during the coup.

The police and the director of public prosecutions have no say in such a release which is granted only by the minister for justice and attorney general, Qoriniasi Bale.