There is a case to answer: Temo

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Maikeli Scott Manuwave left, Raymond Johnson and lawyer Isimeli Keteca outside court. Picture: ATU RASEA

The High Court in Suva has ruled that there is a case to answer for the men alleged to have stolen close to $250,000 from outside the Home Finance Company (HFC) Bank in Nakasi in August 2021.

The matter was called before Acting Chief Justice Salesi Temo yesterday.

Maikeli Scott Manuwave and Raymond Johnson were charged with two counts of aggravated robbery, the first for allegedly stealing a black taxi and the second for allegedly grabbing and making off with a money bag containing $249,477.25.

The money was the takings of Shop’N’Save Supermarket at the Rups Mega Centre in Nakasi.

Last week, both accused told the court they did not believe there was a case for them to answer as they were not identified by any of the eye-witnesses or by the CCTV footage which recorded the robbery.

Mr Johnson’s counsel, Isimeli Keteca, argued the State had not led any evidence to place his client at the scene of the crime in count one and that he was only identified by a Police witness who said he recognised him as his ex-girlfriend’s brother-in-law.

Justice Temo ruled both accused had a case to answer and that he would provide a written reason at a later date.

The defence’s case will be called when the trial continues on February 27.

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