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Court jails robbers

Luke Rawalai
Wednesday, February 27, 2013

THE High Court in Labasa yesterday jailed two of five men charged with aggravated robbery.

Tevita Bulumakau was sentenced to eight and a half years with non-parole of seven while Meli Rokobui was jailed for seven years. The duo appeared before judge Justice Daniel Goundar.

Bulumakau and Rokobui along with other three accused stole jewellery, cash and other properties to the total value of $31,000 from Wainikoro outside Labasa on January 30 two years ago.

In passing sentence, Justice Goundar picked a common starting point of 10 years imprisonment.

He said fortunately, the victim and his family were not physically harmed.

"However, the victim was robbed at night time in the security of his own home situated in a rural community," said Justice Goundar.

"The use of weapon and gagging of the victim further aggravated the offending.

"It must have been a frightening experience for the victim and his family and the court must denounce offences of this nature and give regard to the need for special and general deterrence when punishing the offenders," he said.

Justice Goundar also took into account the pair's mitigating factors of their early guilty pleas, the full recovery of the stolen properties and their genuine effort to rehabilitate themselves.