Men out on bail without psych test

Monday June 24, 2019 Written by Published in Crime

Clients of lawyer Norman George who have been in custody awaiting psychiatric assessment were granted bail at the High Court last week.

Teremoana Saddler and Okirua Manuela were given the benefit of the doubt by Justice of the Peace Bernice Manarangi.

Saddler admitted to the charges of damaging property by fire and refusing an alcohol blood test.

George said Saddler was supposed to receive a psychiatric assessment and because of this he had been in custody for the past two weeks.

He said it was frustrating that nothing has been done and there was no justification in holding his client in custody any longer.

George explained that the nature of the first charge showed that defendant had set ablaze his own bed trying to allegedly harm himself.

“I am exhausted trying to get prison and justice to get his assessment done. He has a life to live,” he said.

Police prosecutor senior sergeant Fairoa Tararo did not oppose bail and reiterated bail conditions such as not to consume or purchase alcohol, not to enter any liquor licenced premises and to report to police at the Police headquarters between 5-6pm every Friday.

Saddler will be sentenced on August 14.

Manuela who faces a number of charges for damaging his parents’ property, public property and breaching probation is to be sentenced on July 2.

George said this was another psychiatric mission unaccomplished.

He said his clients cannot be remanded until the psychiatrist is available.

Police did not oppose bail and recommended bail conditions similar to Saddler including reporting to police every Monday and Friday between 5-6pm.

The Ministry of Health has confirmed that reports concerning mental health can be completed by either Dr Rangi Fariu or Dr Evangelene Daniela-Wong.

Dr Fariu is the full time medical officer mental health and he completes psychiatric reports.

Psychological reports are completed by Dr Evangelene Daniela-Wong who is a clinical psychologist part-time and works 10 days per month in Rarotonga for client contact.

MoH clarified that the types of reports prepared for the Ministry of Justice/Corrective Services are for work release and risk assessment for prison, ultimately all offenders will have this; the parole board on request; and for court reports on mental health on request.

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