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Flowers for hope in prison

5 December 2020

Accused offenders need supervised residence – JP

Tuesday 30 June 2020 | Written by Losirene Lacanivalu | Published in Crime

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Accused offenders need supervised residence – JP

Alleged violent offender Metua John has been denied bail by the High Court, for reasons of public safety.

But defence lawyer Wilkie Rasmussen had raised renewed concerns that due to Covid-19, some offenders are being held in custody as they wait for the judges to arrive on Rarotonga.

He requested bail for his client and continued his argument that he did not hold on to the concept that a person should be remanded in custody prior to their case.

Rasmussen said this was becoming a common practise now.

He told Justice of the Peace Georgina Williams that John was regarded a high-risk offender, but his family was willing to accept him back home.

John was charged with intent to injure on September 2019 and was granted bail on December 2019 – on the grounds that he would reside with his parents.

His new charge, wounding with intent, was allegedly committed on April 8 this year.

Police prosecutor senior sergeant Fairoa Tararo objected to bail on the grounds that the victims in this case were the defendant’s household.

Tararo asked the Court to wait for the mental health report.

Metua was denied bail and JP Williams said she understood that his custody maybe a lengthy one but the safety of the public was important.

She said that until the Court received the psychiatric report of the defendant, they could not make a decision.

“We need a place for them to be supervised and to live. This is the best we can do for the public and the family.”

She adjourned the matter to July 23. The psychiatric report will also determine if John is fit to enter a plea.