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No special treatment

Shalveen Chand
Thursday, May 01, 2014

A FOREIGN national accused of transporting 20 kilograms of cocaine informed the court he didn't understand English as his mother was allowed to interpret the court proceedings in Spanish.

Aiden Alec Hurtado pleaded not guilty to the charge of transportation of illicit drugs and also informed the court through his lawyer that he was made to sign an alleged confession in English, a language he doesn't speak or understand.

Defence counsel Samanunu Vaniqi told the court the caution interview would be challenged.

She said the defence was making an application for the analyst who had done tests on the alleged drugs to provide a statement on the methodology of the tests.

Ms Vaniqi said she had been informed the laboratory in Fiji was not equipped to do tests on cocaine.

She also made an application for bail which was denied. She made a further application for trial to be held as early as possible.

Justice Salesi Temo said the accused would not get special treatment and would have to wait.

He said since his court diary was full for 2015, he was predicting the trial would happen in February 2016.


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