Benjamin Padarath charged
05 April 2011 |
A businessman appeared in the Suva Magistrates Court today charged with one count of “False Information to a Public Servant”.
Benjamin Padarath is alleged to have given information, which he knew to be false to the Director of Immigration Fiji, Nemani Vuniwaqa, via text messages, intending to cause the Director of Immigration Fiji to include the name of one Paul Freeman in the Fiji Immigration Watch List, which the Director of Immigration ought not to do, if the true state of facts respecting which the information was given, were known to him.
After being read the charge, Padarath submitted that he understood the charge laid against him. His lawyer, Rajendra Chaudhry raised a preliminary issue with the Court in which he wished to be advised on the provisions set out in the FICAC Promulgation that gave the Commission the powers to charge his client.
FICAC Prosecutor Livai Sovau told the court that the offence against Padarath is contrary to Section 201 (a) of the Crimes Decree and that FICAC could charge any offence under that section. He then asked for time to reply to the issue raised by Chaudhry.
After receiving no objections to bail by FICAC, Magistrate Thushara Rajasinghe ordered that Padarath enter a $2000.00 bail bond, two sureties and to report to FICAC once a fortnight. He was also informed that Padarath’s travel documents were already with the relevant authorities.
The matter has been adjourned to 19th April 2011 for FICAC’s reply to the issue raised by Chaudhry and to check on second phase disclosures.
Bail was extended for Padarath.