De­por­ta­tion Or­der Over­ruled

THE HABEAS COR­PUS AP­PLI­CA­TION WAS A WRIT TO ONLY TEST LEGALITY OF THE DE­TEN­TION

Fiji Sun - - Nation - JY­OTI PRATIBHA Feed­back: jy­otip@fi­jisun.com.fj ALSO READ More court re­ports >P17

Aman charged with one count of us­ing forged doc­u­ments and an­other count of con­spir­acy to de­fraud –in­flu­enc­ing a public of­fi­cial ap­peared at the Suva Mag­is­trates Court last Fri­day. Chief Mag­is­trate Usaia Ratuvili noted that the ac­cused was to be de­ported to In­dia on Satur­day morn­ing as per the High Court or­der af­ter a Habeas Cor­pus ap­pli­ca­tion was filed by lawyer Parvesh Sharma on be­half of the ac­cused ear­lier this month. How­ever the State in­formed court that af­ter the de­por­ta­tion or­der was made, Po­lice sub­mit­ted a file to the DPP’s of­fice and af­ter look­ing at the ev­i­dence and charges were LAID AGAINST THE AC­CUSED s

Mr Sharma ar­gued that when the

Habeas Cor­pus ap­pli­ca­tion was be­ing heard, State had in­formed the Court that no charges were go­ing TO BE LAID s

Chief Mag­is­trate Ratuvili ques­tioned State that they have a court or­der to oblige then why were charges were laid. The mat­ter was stood down for the ac­cused to be present in court by 12 noon and State to get in­struc­tions.

The Di­rec­tor of Public Prosecutions Christo­pher Pryde ap­peared for the State when the mat­ter was re­called at the Suva Mag­is­trates Court. The DPP made sub­mis­sions that based on the ev­i­dence in the Po­lice docket, charges were laid against the ac­cused.

He said pro­vided that the court was sat­is­fied that the crim­i­nal pro­ceed­ings were prop­erly in­sti­tuted and were not vex­a­tious or an abuse of the process of the court – no civil court may in­trude into the do­main of the crim­i­nal court. The DPP said the Habeas Cor­pus ap­pli­ca­tion was a writ to only test the legality of the de­ten­tion.

He said af­ter re­view­ing the Po­lice file there were ev­i­dence hence the charges were filed on 19.05.16. He said the charges were law­fully brought and there was no ev­i­dence that the DPP has acted in any im­proper man­ner in bring­ing the charges.

There­fore, he sub­mit­ted that any or­der in an­other court even though a high court must be set aside and the court must di­rect its mind to the charges be­fore it. Mr Pryde said the crim­i­nal court took prece­dence over any civil court. The De­fence sub­mit­ted that when the Habeas Cor­pus ap­pli­ca­tion was made, State had in­formed that no charges would be laid hence the de­por­ta­tion or­der was made.

Mr Sharma in­formed the court that there is no ap­pli­ca­tion by the Di­rec­tor of Im­mi­gra­tion to have the or­der re­scinded. He said the ac­cused was kept in cus­tody for 10 months in an Im­mi­gra­tion safe house with­out be­ing charged. He asked the court to dis­miss the charges laid so the ac­cused could be de­ported. How­ever the DPP pointed out that that it was not ap­pro­pri­ate for any other court to usurp the pow­ers of the DPP un­der the Con­sti­tu­tion. He said that he had the pow­ers to re­view and see whether an of­fence had been com­mit­ted even af­ter an or­der had been made. The court noted both par­ties’ sub­mis­sions and made an or­der that the High Court be for­mally in­formed of the charges laid against the ac­cused.

The ac­cused has been re­manded in cus­tody and the mat­ter has been ad­journed to June 3. Mean­while a re­view of the Habeas Cor­pus ap­pli­ca­tion would be heard in the High Court to­mor­row Edited by Ru­si­ate Mataika

Di­rec­tor of Public Prosecutions Christo­pher Pryde.

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