Crime & Court

5, Including Top Businessmen, Charged With Social Gathering Violation

The accused persons were arrested on Monday at Allardyce Road in Domain for the alleged purpose of consuming alcohol. Police prosecutor, Sergeant Ravi Narayan, objected to their bail on the grounds that the case was of public interest and called for the accused persons to be remanded in custody.
16 Apr 2020 13:02
5, Including Top Businessmen, Charged With Social Gathering Violation
L-R: Ranjeeta Singh and Roshan Ali, Mohammed Khan, Raghwan Construction Ltd director Rodney Raghwan and Rajesh Kumar

Five people appeared at the Suva Magistrates Court yesterday, charged with violating social gathering orders when they were found drinking alcohol.

The accused are businessman Mohammed Khan, director of Raghwan Construction Limited Rodney Raghwan, taxi driver Roshan Ali, his wife Ranjeeta Sharma and the personal assistant to the chairperson of Flour Mills of Fiji Foods Limited, Rajesh Kumar.

The accused persons were arrested on Monday at Allardyce Road in Domain for the alleged purpose of consuming alcohol. Police prosecutor, Sergeant Ravi Narayan, objected to their bail on the grounds that the case was of public interest and called for the accused persons to be remanded in custody.

He told Magistrate Deepika Prakash that social gathering orders had been in place for three weeks now and as highlighted by the media, there had been an increase in arrests of offenders.

Sergeant Narayan said granting bail would open the floodgates for members of the public to easily offend and receive bail when they front court.

He said though the charge of failure to comply with a public order was not serious, the offending is and the State has a prima facie case against the accused persons.

The defence lawyer submitted that Rodney has a skin condition and is not fit to be remanded anywhere other than his home.

The court heard that the property where the accused persons were arrested from belongs to Rodney, who had gone there to inspect construction work at around 4:30pm on that day.

Mohammed and Rajesh, who both live at the property, were at home when Roshan and Ranjeeta delivered some alcohol that Rajesh had ordered.

Mohammed, Rodney and Rajesh were ordered to pay $2000 each for cash bail while Roshan and Ranjeeta were bailed for $500 cash.

Their case has been adjourned to June 22, for disclosures to be served. Edited by Jonathan Bryce

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