3 Nov 2010

Fiji AG says acquittal shows independence of judiciary

9:10 am on 3 November 2010

Fiji's interim Attorney General, Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum, says the acquittal of the former Airports Fiji Limited Chief Executive on fraud charges shows there is no political interference with the judiciary.

A judge acquitted Ratu Sakiusa Tusolia after the three assessors in his trial delivered a unanimous not guilty verdict on three counts of fraudulent conversion and three counts of keeping false records.

The charges were brought by Fiji's Independent Commission Against Corruption, known as FICAC, which was set up by the interim regime .

Mr Sayed Khaiyum says the result should provide an answer to those who questions the independence of Fiji judiciary:

"But what it says about, particular those people in Australia and New Zealand and some people in Fiji who have been claiming the judiciary is not independent or is politically driven and the FICAC is politically driven are completely wrong."

The President of the Fiji Law Society, Dorsami Naidu, says the outcome is good for faith in the judiciary.

But he would be even more positive if there were not decrees in force restricting the claiming of costs or compensation from the state.