TWO AUSSIE ‘PRINCES’ ARRESTED IN BOUGAINVILLE -  March 17, 2006

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TWO AUSSIE ‘PRINCES’ ARRESTED IN BOUGAINVILLE

PORT MORESBY, Papua New Guinea (PNG Post-Courier, March 17) – Controversial "princes" to the late Bougainville rebel Francis Ona — Australian Jeffrey Richards and Briton James Nessbitt — were arrested and sent packing from Buka yesterday. Bougainville police arrested the two on Wednesday night at the Me’ekamui executive premises in Buka.

Richards and Nessbitt were escorted out of Buka yesterday and handed over to Papua New Guinea authorities — the police and Foreign Affairs.

They arrived in Port Moresby yesterday and were accompanied by Assistant Commissioner of Police Paul Kamuai and other police officers.

The two face immigration and criminal charges, but police yesterday refused to comment — both in Buka before departure and on arrival in Port Moresby yesterday.

Richards and Nessbitt were also brought into Bougainville in 2003 by fast-money conman Noah Musingku and later arrived in Panguna village of Guava, the home of Mr Ona, where they acted as advisers to the self-styled Me’ekamui government.

The situation in Bougainville was tense yesterday as the Me’ekamui faction "farewelled" their men.

Bougainville Administrator Peter Tsiamalili, who was at the airport to witness the deportation, along with Australian High Commissioner Michael Potts and New Zealand High Commissioner Laurie Markes, said it was the biggest relief for the people of Bougainville to see Nessbit and Richards leave. They were whisked away from Jackson’s Airport in Port Moresby yesterday afternoon and taken to Bomana Prison for questioning.

March 17, 2006

Papua New Guinea Post-Courier: www.postcourier.com.pg/

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