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31 December 2021
Saturday 27 November 2021 | Written by Caleb Fotheringham | Published in Court, National
Cook Islands High Court. 12081330
A man charged with dangerous and reckless
driving was asked to pay reparation costs of over $7000 to the victim whose
vehicle he crashed into.
In the Criminal Court at Avarua on Thursday,
Teinakore-O-Atela Ataera who represented himself pleaded guilty to the charge.
Police said on November 22, Ataera crashed
into the right side of the victim’s car.
“There were substantial damages occurred to
the vehicle,” police said.
The court heard the repair would cost $7798.
Lawyer Mark Short, who was in court at the
time and did not represent Ataera, said he was concerned that there was only
He said the matter should be adjourned to give
the defendant time to get a second opinion on how much the damages would cost
“$7000 is a very high amount in these Covid
times,” he said.
Short said he knew Ataera, who was a father
always trying to look after his children. He said Ataera’s wife also passed
away and asked the court to show leniency.
Justice of the Peace, Nadine Newham agreed
with Short and adjourned the matter for December 2.
Okirua Manuela was sentenced to 14-days of
custody for driving while disqualified in the Criminal Court on Thursday.
On September 28, Manuela was found guilty in
the Criminal Court for excess blood alcohol.
He appeared again on October 28 for two
charges of driving whilst disqualified and appeared on Thursday for the same
For his offence of driving whilst
disqualified, he was spotted driving on the back road of Nikao on November 9.
Manuela entered a guilty plea through his
lawyer Norman George.
The court heard before Manuela’s court
appearance on Thursday he had been in custody for 15 days.
Justice of the Peace Nadine Newham said
because the defendant already spent over two weeks in prison, he did not need
to spend any more time in custody.
“If you keep doing this you may keep ending up
in prison, or for a longer-term,” the JP said.
Tuterangi Ataera charged with joint burglary
was released on bail on Thursday at the Criminal Court at Avarua.
Ataera’s lawyer, Norman George said his client
had been in custody for three weeks and wanted bail.
Police said they were not opposed to bail but
asked for curfew hours between 7am and 7pm.
Justice of the Peace Nadine Newham approved
bail with the curfew imposed. Ataera is also not allowed associate with