Drug charge relates to Arorangi police raids

Friday September 15, 2017 Written by Published in Crime

A Rarotonga man who was charged with “threatening acts”, after another local man stole his marijuana has appeared in court charged with possessing utensils for drug use.

 

The charge relates to items such as a filtration devices or “bong”, commonly used for smoking cannabis.

Christian Tai, represented by defence counsel Wilkie Rasmussen, appeared in the Avarua High Court before Justice of the Peace Bernice Manarangi on September 7, alongside multiple other individuals facing the same charge.

The charges came after a successful drug bust in Arorangi some weeks ago, during which six people were found in possession of cannabis, utensils for drug use and/or cannabis seeds.

Tai previously appeared in court on August 2 before Justice of the Peace Carmen Temata.

At that time the court was told that in April Tai had entered a property in Kavera, Arorangi in search of Papa Miri Tuana, who he believed had stolen some of his marijuana leaves.

“He (Tai) was very upset that Tuana had entered his property and taken the marijuana leaves,” Temata said.  It was alleged Tai had kicked the front door of the property open and shouted and demanded to see Tuana.

After being told by a frightened Tuapikepike Marurai, Tuana’s partner, that Tuana was not home, Tai continued to act aggressively, waving a knife around, slashing a door frame and leaving Marurai fearing for her life, the court was told.

Under cross-examination Tai agreed that the incident had begun after he realised Tuana had stolen his marijuana leaves. However, Tai also claimed that he was unaware how the cannabis plant had come to grow there and that the marijuana plant was technically outside his property’s perimeter.  Those who were in the court on August 2 found some amusement in this, and could be seen chuckling along with Tai, who appeared somewhat entertained by his own account of the incident.

Temata, however, did not find any amusement in the case and convicted Tai, adjourning the case for sentencing until October 18.

However before sentencing for his previous conviction, Tai has appeared again regarding a separate offence.

It is yet to be clarified whether the two offences are related,whether his first offence led police to investigate further, or whether the two are completely unrelated.

At Tai’s court appearance on September 7, his lawyer requested an adjournment until October 19 to give the defendant and his counsel time to receive disclosures and enter a plea. 

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