Drug case adjourned

Friday 19 February 2021 | Written by Losirene Lacanivalu | Published in Crime, National


Two of the four men who are facing charges of money laundering and selling Class C drugs have pleaded not guilty.

Defence lawyer Norman George entered not guilty pleas on behalf of his clients Tamarii Teremoana Kaivananga and Philip Montgomery Strickland.

At the High Court yesterday, George withdrew his services as lawyer for the other two men charged; Rutril Enoka and Tepine Tetava Tama.

The four men were arrested on the morning of January 28 for supplying/selling cannabis, and charges related to money-laundering.

All four first appeared in Court on January 29 and have been remanded in custody since then.

George said his clients chose to plead not guilty and have elected a judge and jury trial.

He said he would ask for a separate trial for his clients and this will be explained to the judge. George further revealed that he had made a bail application to the Chief Justice but when the Chief Justice arrives, he would be making further submissions for bail.

Strickland and Kaivananga’s case have been adjourned to a Judge sitting - a date is to be advised by the court registrar.

The other two accused Enoka and Tama are now represented by defence lawyer Mark Short.

Short requested for an adjournment to look into the disclosures.

Enoka and Tama’s case has been adjourned to March.

Since the arrest of the four, acting Commissioner of Police Akatauira Matapo has warned that police will continue to take a strong stand against illicit drugs in the country, and will come down hard on criminals, who try to gain from supplying narcotics to others.

“There is no tolerance for drug dealing and it must stop,” Matapo said earlier.

This is the first time, police have applied charges related to money-laundering, in respect to drug dealing cases.


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