McIlwain case back in court

National, Normal

The National – Wednesday, December 8, 2010

THE counsel representing former Bank South Pacific CEO Garth McIlwain has made a submission calling for a decision instead of “simply rubber stamp” the evidence and pass the case to trial at the National Court.
Greg Egan was replying to the police prosecutor’s response to the accused’s submission to have the case dismissed on insufficient evidence.
He told the Waigani Committal Court that the “police hand-up brief” did not contain sufficient evidence to warrant his client to stand trial in the National Court.
Egan submitted that the comparison of the signatures in the police brief showed that McIlwain did not sign on the “fixed floating charges” document and urged the court to note that the police could not prove the date of the making of the charge or the fact that McIlwain’s signature is not on any of the documents.
He submitted that this was a valid business activity in view of the merger between PNG Banking Corporation (PNGBC) and BSP, where the latter assumed both the assets and the liabilities of PNGBC.
“The deed of charge dated May 6, 1999 was in favour of PNGBC. When PNGBC and BSP merged, BSP legally assumed all of the rights and liabilities of PNGBC.
“Yama Security Services Ltd’s (YSSL) claim against Motor Vehicle Insurance Ltd (MVIL) was by operation of law assumed by BSP.
“It took eight years to establish a fixed floating charge on Dec 1, 2006.
“It was always the responsibility of Yama Group of Companies to register the fixed floating charge.
“Under the Companies Act, once a charge is registered, it is deemed to be validly registered. So again there is no prima facie case against McIlwain.
“The police has to prove its case, you cannot simply rubber stamp, there has to be a decision. They (police) have not sufficiently established a case. They have nothing effectively telling you to abrogate your responsibility to make a decision,” Egan  said.
Magistrate Sinclair Gora told the court that he needed time to go through the police brief and set the ruling on the “no-case submission” to Jan 10.