The judge who convicted a group of anti-government protesters on Nauru has been accused of misapplying the country's bail laws.
A lawyer who has been advising those convicted on Wednesday says the judge wrongly refused them bail ahead of their sentencing next week.
Twelve members, the last of the so-called 'Nauru 19', who challenged the government in 2015 over its interference in the judiciary, were convicted of rioting and disorderly behaviour by Justice Daniel Fatiaki.
The trial had gone ahead despite the defence not having legal representation, with Justice Fatiaki ruling that was not a legal requirement.
Barrister Stephen Lawrence said Mr Fatiaki was blatantly wrong in his application of the bail laws.
The judge had told the court he was required to refuse bail unless those convicted could show 'exceptional circumstances' and he said they had not shown this.
However, Mr Lawrence said there was no such test in the Bail Act.
Nauru law required the 11 men and one woman be accorded a presumption in favour of bail, he said.
Nauru Govt responds
However, Nauru's government has hit out at criticism over the trial and reporting by overseas media.
The government said it understood the separation of powers and the media reports were irresponsible.
It said its judges were highly respected and the attacks had been reprehensible and smacked of "blatant racism".
The claims about a denial of legal representation were also wrong, it said, saying it had provided visas for the group's Australia lawyers, but they never turned up.
But supporters of the 'Nauru 19' maintain the accused were denied access to legal aid and the public defender.
In addition, the government last year also brought in a mass of legislation, much of it highly contentious, and passed at lightning speed, and which the 'Nauru 19' believed was aimed at hampering their chances of a fair trial.
The Nauru Government has also effectively banned the media from the island by imposing prohibitive visa restrictions.