1 Mar 2005

Two more arrests in Solomon Islands over alleged theft of Malaitan compensation money

9:14 pm on 1 March 2005

In Solomon Islands, another two men have been charged over 700 thousand US dollars missing from the compensation paid to Malaita province for grievances arising from the ethnic unrest.

The two are police inspector Leslie Ofu, and Jeremy Rua, a local businessman and their arrests follow those of lawyers, Andrew Nori and Lesley Kwaiga, on Monday.

Police allege that as a result of demands made with menace, this money, which equates to five million Solomon Islands dollars, did not reach the people of Malaita.

They allege it was deposited into a private bank account.

Ofu is charged with one count of receiving the proceeds of a crime, while Rua has been charged with 3 counts of demanding money with menaces and one count of receiving the proceeds of a crime.

Ofu has been suspended from duty until the case is concluded.

Both men are on bail to appear later this month.