The National, Wednesday 22nd August 2012
SIR Sir Puka Temu has become the first cabinet minister to begin the new parliamentary term facing court charges
The public services minister has been charged by police with perverting the cause of justice when he allegedly interfered with state witnesses during his last failed adultery case.
Sir Puka was supposed to appear at Waigani Committal Court yesterday but his attendance for the opening of parliament took precedence and he apologised to the court through his lawyer.
His lawyer also told the court that his firm had just been engaged and they would file a notice to represent Sir Puka in court.
The court granted an adjournment for Sir Puka to appear on Aug 29.
“You can appreciate that the matter commenced on June 19, so time has ticked from then on,” magistrate Rosie Johnson told Sir Puka’s lawyer.
“We have three months to dispense the matter so please advise the honourable member to appear.”
Police files have now been prepared and Sir Puka’s lawyer will respond to the submissions.
In another case, a woman also appeared before Johnson yesterday facing a total 180 charges of false pretence, uttering and forgery.
There were 60 charges for each offence filed in three separate books.
Police files were now ready for trial but her lawyer, Francis Griffin, has told the court that they would file a no-case submission in two weeks.