Fifteen MPs In PNG Being Investigated For White Collar Crimes

admin's picture

Maprik MP Simon arrested for false pretense, official corruption

By Donald Willie

PORT MORESBY, Papua New Guinea (PNG Post-Courier, Nov. 11, 2014) – Fifteen Members of Parliament are being investigated for white collar crimes which include official corruption.

They are also being investigated for misappropriation, conspiracy, false pretence and fraud, the police national and anti-corruption directorate said yesterday without naming the MPs.

The latest however, was Maprik MP John Simon, who was arrested last Friday and charged with false pretence and official corruption.

He was detained at Jackson Airport while trying to fly out of Port Moresby.

Police said they have charged him with two counts of false pretence and 38 counts of official corruption. Mr Simon appeared at the Waigani District Court where his lawyers applied for and were granted a court bail of K2000.

During the past two years, three MPs had been successfully prosecuted out of five who had been arrested and charged with financial discrepancies.

They included former Pomio MP Paul Tiensten, who is currently serving a nine-year jail sentence, and Gulf Governor Havila Kavo and Komo-Margarima MP Francis Potape, who are both awaiting sentencing.

On the Maprik MP’s case, the anti-corruption directorate investigations found that a total of K86,050 was paid to his two private companies which had allegedly rendered services to the then-candidate’s election campaigns in 2012.

Simon is the sole director and owner of the two firms, Extreme Construction Ltd and Extreme Hire Cars, which were paid K49,000 and K37,050 respectively.

Police investigations showed that the Maprik district administrator and treasurer were sacked in 2012 for allegedly refusing to settle the MP’s election-related expenses.

They lodged a complaint with the police which led to Mr Simon’s arrest last Friday.

Rate this article: 
No votes yet

Add new comment