The Director of Public Prosecutions filed a nolle prosequi in a sedition case against Opposition Member of Parliament Mosese Bulitavu and businessman Jagath Karunaratne this morning (03.04.19) at the Suva Magistrates’ Court.
Mosese Bulitavu and Jagath Karunaratne were charged with sedition in 2011.
The matter was finally set down for trial in 2016 after all pre-trial applications were determined in the Magistrates’ Court.
The matter was then reassigned to a different Magistrate after a successful recusal application by the Defence. The matter proceeded to trial in the Magistrates’ Court on 16 May 2017.
Mosese Bulitavu and Jagath Karunaratne were convicted of sedition after a trial in the Magistrates’ Court on 26 March 2018.
Mosese Bulitavu was sentenced to 2 years 5 months and 13 days while Jagath Karunaratne was sentenced to 2 years 5 months and 16 days imprisonment.
Both appealed their convictions to the High Court.
The High Court allowed their appeals against conviction and ordered a retrial due to errors made by the Magistrate.
Following a review of the matter, it was decided the evidence no longer met the evidential threshold required to take the matter to court for a retrial.
Accordingly, the matter was withdrawn by way of a nolle prosequi.