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19 July 2022

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In brief: Court news

Friday 11 February 2022 | Written by Caleb Fotheringham | Published in Court, National

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A 21-year-old man is set to return to his home in Rakahanga after his bail conditions were changed on Thursday in the Criminal Court in Avarua.

Tupouatimo Noa is charged with burglary and contempt of court.

Noa first appeared in court on November 18 last year after he allegedly stole a carton of beer early on Sunday morning, November 14 from an Arorangi store. 

The court heard a glass door had been smashed to gain entry to the shop. Damage was also reported to an ANZ Bank ATM nearby the scene of the burglary. 

Noa’s lawyer Lavi Rokoika said on Thursday an arrangement had been made with ANZ for her client to pay back the damage to the bank for the ATM.

Rokoika said Noa would return to Rakahanga to work.

Justice of the Peace, Georgina Keenan-Williams who presided over the case said that she thought the defendant going home was a good idea.

“Staying on Rarotonga will only exasperate his situation than going back home,” Keenan-Williams said.

She agreed to the defendant returning to Rakahanga but gave the defendant a firm warning about breaking bail conditions.

“You already broke bail conditions … if you keep doing that you might go back to prison,” Keenan-Williams said.

The matter is adjourned for June 2, 2022.


Lawyer overseas

A man charged for driving whilst disqualified is waiting for his lawyer to return from overseas before making a plea.

Asaeli Ngahe is accused of driving a motorcycle on November 26, 2021, while being disqualified from driving.

He appeared before the Criminal Court in Avarua on Thursday.

The court heard Ngahe would wait for his lawyer, Michelle Tangimama to return from overseas before making a plea.

Justice of the Peace, Georgina Keenan-Williams adjourned the matter for March 31.


Guilty plea

Clifton Hosking pleaded guilty to cultivating eight cannabis plants in Arorangi from late October to early November last year.

Hosking pleaded guilty in the Criminal Court on Thursday, after confusion if a guilty plea had already been made by the defendant.

Hosking’s lawyer, Mark Short asked for a probation report for his client.

Justice of the Peace, Georgina Keenan-Williams said a sentencing date would be set by court staff.