15 Jun 2007

Fiji chief justice appears as witnessin Court of Appeal

10:18 am on 15 June 2007

Fiji's acting chief justice, Anthony Gates, has appeared in the Court of Appeal as a witness in an appeal case filed by a prisoner he convicted in 2004.

The former SDL party vice president, Ratu Inoke Takivekata, has appealed against his conviction and sentence to life imprisonment for inciting the November 2000 army mutiny which cost eight lives.

Justice Gates was the presiding judge in that trial in the Suva High Court.

Takiveikata claims that the outcome of the trial was pre-empted because a James Brody has filed an affidavit claiming he heard Justice Gates say at a cocktail party on Bastille Day in 2004 that he would put Takiveikata away.

Takiveikata says the judgment was wrong in law and should be set aside.

When Justice Gates took the witness stand yesterday he denied all the allegations against him.

The case is continuing before a panel of three Appeal Court judges.