24 Nov 2003

Appeal lodged against Cook Islands fraud conviction

4:40 pm on 24 November 2003

An appeal has been lodged in the Cook Islands against the conviction and sentence of the former chief of staff in the prime minister's department, Edward Drollet.

He was sentenced to two years in jail for receiving more than 16 thousand US dollars in secret commissions in an accountancy scam.

He was also given three months for the forgery of a back dated letter.

But his lawyer, Norman George, has appealed and Drollet is free on bail until the next hearing.

Mr George questioned whether the community suffered any loss as a result of Drollet's actions.

And he proposed that Drollet be allowed to go back to the prime minister's office to get financial records up to date.