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Justice angry report on jail breaks delayed

PORT VILA, Vanuatu (Vanuatu Daily Post, April 17, 2009) – Supreme Court Justice N. R. Dawson has accepted an apology from the Office of the Public Prosecutor for the delay to provide a full report on escapes from jail and criminal activities for the cases pending before the Supreme Court.

The Office of the Public Prosecutor assured him the report would be ready today for the cases to be heard at 2pm.

Prosecutor Alain Obed for the Public Prosecutor said the Office depended on the outcome of police investigations for detailed reports into the cases.

Two days earlier, Justice Dawson grilled the young prosecutor for the absence of the report and threatened to hold the Public Prosecutor in contempt of court and even have her arrested and thrown behind bars for failing to comply with his order to have it ready for him this time after a one-week delay due to other commitments.

The powerful judge did not mince his words when he told the prosecutor that her lack of explanation for not presenting the report showed a total lack of respect and courtesy for the court.

However now that he had accepted the apology, he reminded the Office of the Public Prosecutor not to repeat the delay to make sure that cases were dealt with at the earliest convenience.

Before yesterday, an inmate with broken fingers and a bandaged wrist was ordered to remain in custody to await the report.

The inmate’s legal counsel said her client was injured by police and had to receive medical treatment for his injuries.

Justice Dawson spoke with words to the effect that police were to uphold the law against violence and cases as such would not be tolerated.

Two more inmates were ordered to remain in custody yesterday for the same reason.

Vanuatu Daily Post:

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