8 Jun 2009

Fiji court official defends forced removal of Law Society files

1:46 pm on 8 June 2009

The Chief Registrar in Fiji has rejected claims that the removal of files from the office of the Fiji Law Society was disgraceful and unprofessional.

Last week the law society issued a letter to the Chief Registrar Ana Rokomokoti asking her to respond to the results of an investigation into her removal of files in May.

The investigation found she had approached the Society's secretary on a weekend to demand she hand over unresolved complaint files, and threatened her with arrest if she did not comply.

The president of the Law Society, Dorsami Naidu, said they would have willingly handed over the files if they had been requested appropriately under the new Legal Practitioners decree.

But instead they were forcibly taken without any inventory being made.

However, the Chief Registrar says the decree bestowed upon her the powers and duty to immediately obtain any unresolved complaint files from the Society.

Ana Rokomokoti says the Secretary verified that no other files had been removed.

She says she behaved courteously at all times and did not threaten or exert any force over the secretary.

She says she was not required to give any notice to the Law Society under the decree.