11 Nov 2004

Fiji vice president loses appeal against sentence.

6:12 pm on 11 November 2004

Jailed Fiji Vice President, Ratu Jope Seniloli, has lost his appeal against his four-year jail sentence.

Seniloli had been sent to prison for taking an illegal oath to become the usurper president immediately after the coup of May 2000 while the then legally appointed president, Ratu Sir Kamisese mara, was still in office.

In his judgement, Justice Gordon Ward said Justice Nazhat Shameem's ruling to send Seniloli and four other prominent Fijians to jail for their part in the 2000 coup was appropriate and correct and he was satisfied with it.

Justice Ward told Seniloli's defence team they had no reason to interfere with Justice Shameem's ruling.

The appeal was lodged straight after Justice Shameem sent the five, Seniloli, Deputy Speaker Ratu Rakuita Vakalalabure, Ratu Viliame Volavola, Peceli Rinakama and Viliame Savu to jail two month ago.