10 Nov 2006

Suspended Solomons AG back in court in immigration case

3:21 pm on 10 November 2006

The suspended Solomon Islands attorney general, Julian Moti, is appearing in the High Court today to challenge a refusal by an Australian Magistrate to assign his case to a local magistrate.

The Solomon Islands Broadcasting Corporation says this follows Mr Moti's claims last month that the Australian Magistrate John Myers was not neutral.

Mr Moti's Lawyer told the court that the magistrate's salary was paid by Australia and therefore it would not be fair for him to sit on the case.

The application was rejected by Mr Myers.

Mr Moti, whose Australian passport was cancelled, is facing charges related to his entry into Solomon Islands last month without legal entry documents.

He was released on bail after spending 10 days in police custody at Rove Prison.

Earlier this week, a local lawyer Nuatali Tongarutu was appointed acting attorney general for the next six months.