9 Oct 2006

Suspended Solomons AG fights extradition from PNG to Australia

2:47 pm on 9 October 2006

Lawyers for the suspended Solomon Islands Attorney General, Julian Moti, are in court in Papua New Guinea today, appealing against extradition proceedings instigated by Australia.

Mr Moti has been in the Solomon Islands High Commission in PNG since skipping bail to avoid extradition proceedings last week.

The Australian lawyer is wanted in connection with alleged sex offences against a 13-year-old girl in Vanuatu in 1997.

The Solomons High Commissioner to PNG, Bernard Bata'anisia, says Mr Moti, who does not have a Solomons passport, is still waiting for advice from Honiara over whether he will be allowed into the country.

But Mr Bata'anisia says more should be known after today's court hearing.

"It is on the appeal that was made for him last week when he was supposed to appear before the court and then for other reasons he did not attend. I think he's appealing against his warrant for arrest that was issued last week. So I understand the court hearing is this morning and from that outcome then they will decide what is the next step to be done."

Bernard Bata'anisia