31 Jul 2003

Fiji court orders arrest of Government senator

4:15 pm on 31 July 2003

The Suva magistrate's court has ordered the arrest of a Fiji government senator and vice-president of the ruling SDL party, Ratu Inoke Takiveikata.

Radio Fiji reports that the arrest was ordered after Ratu Inoke failed to appear on six charges related to the November 2000 army mutiny.

Ratu Inoke is facing four counts of incitement to mutiny, one count of conspiring to commit mutiny and one count of aiding soldiers in the act of mutiny.

He first appeared before magistrate Epa-rama Roko-ika on the 15th of this month after which the magistrate ordered that his case be tried in the High Court.

Ratu Inoke was bailed to appear in court today but failed to do so.

The case will be called again on the 11th of August.

Meanwhile the court martial of 21 soldiers charged with that mutiny is under way in Suva.

Others have already been found guilty and sentenced.

The mutiny was aimed at assassinating the military commander, Commodore Frank Bainimarama, and freeing George Speight.

It resulted in eight deaths.