Officers in condom-eating saga give statements

National

By TABITHA NERO
TWO police officers who were committed to stand trial in the National Court for allegedly forcing a woman to swallow condoms gave their statements yesterday.
Joshua Yawijah, 22 from Pangia, Southern Highlands and Jacklyn Tanda, 23 from Wabag, Enga whilst on duty at Boroko police station on December 4 last year allegedly forced a suspect to swallow two condoms.
Lawyer representing Yawijah and Tanda told the Waigani Committal Court that the crucial evidence in the matter was ‘baseless”.
He argued that the main witness statement was signed by another person and not the alleged victim and that the court needs to be ‘satisfied’ with all statements provided by the police with regards to Section 94,1 (a) and C (2) of the District Court Act.
He also argued that the alleged video footage which showed Yawijah allegedly forcing the victim to swallow the condoms was not shown before the court prior to committing Yawijah and Tanda to stand trial.
Senior magistrate Cosmas Bidar said the court would consider the evidence in totality and make a final ruling on September 22.
Yahwijah and Tanda were both on duty at Boroko police station on Dec 4 last year when the woman was brought in for questioning for allegedly having marijuana in her possession.
It is alleged that Yahwijah, Tanda and two other policemen asked the victim to remove the contents of her string bag, which contained seven male condoms.
Yawijah allegedly ordered the woman to tear open a condom, chew and swallow it.
She allegedly chewed and swallowed two condoms and refused to swallow the third condom.
It was alleged that Tanda was taking a video footage of the incident on her mobile phone and laughed while the victim was teased and threatened by Yahwijah.
It was further alleged that the video footage was uploaded later that month and went viral on social media.
The matter will return to court on Aug 15.
Yahwijah and Tanda are on extended bail of K1000 each.

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