18th August 11:08 AM
Appeal case of DPP against Waqabaca, Hank Arts and Fiji Times Limited heard in Fiji Appeal Court
By Semi Turaga
Wednesday 17/07/2019
The Fiji Times Limited is represented by Wylie Clarke of Howards Lawyers[Back Left] Hank Arts is represented by Nicholas Barnes of Munro Leys and former Nai Lalakai contributor Josaia Waqabaca

The appeal case of the Director of Public Prosecutions against former Nai Lalakai contributor Josaia Waqabaca, former Fiji Times Limited Publisher Hank Arts and The Fiji Times Limited was heard in the Fiji Court of Appeal today.

Waqabaca is representing himself while Arts is represented by Nicholas Barnes of Munro Leys and The Fiji Times Limited is represented by Wylie Clarke of Howards Lawyers.

The Director of Public Prosecutions is represented by Assistant DPP Lee Burney.

In the Court of the Appeal this morning, Justice Suresh Chandra ordered for steps to be taken under the practice direction of the court.

High Court Judge Justice Thushara Rajasinghe acquitted The Fiji Times Limited, Arts, Waqabaca, Fiji Times Limited Editor in Chief Fred Wesley and former Nai Lalakai Editor Anare Ravula of its sedition charges in May last year.

The Director of Public Prosecutions appealed the case saying in their view the court has made a number of fundamental errors in its interpretation of the law and they now have conflicting High Court decisions in Fiji which require clarification from the Court of Appeal.

He said this was a case that concerned not only the boundaries of freedom of expression by a media organisation but also the rights of vulnerable minority groups in Fiji to lead lives in harmony with their neighbours and free from unlawful discrimination.

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