13 Aug 2007

PNG MP convicted of rape loses appeal - by-election likely

11:26 am on 13 August 2007

A Papua New Guinea MP, who was allowed to contest the recent poll despite being convicted of rape, has lost his appeal against the conviction.

The Post Courier newspaper reports that the Supreme Court has dismissed James Yali's appeal against his 2005 conviction for raping his sister in law in 2004.

The decision means a by-election is now likely in the Rai Coast electorate of Madang Province.

The Supreme Court ruled that the trial judge was very thorough in determining that there had been no consent from the victim.

Yali, who had been Madang Governor at the time of the conviction, and was serving a 12-year-term, was allowed to stand in last month's elections because his appeal was pending.