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Man charged with conspiracy to defeat justice

Repeka Nasiko
Monday, February 05, 2018

A 38-YEAR-OLD businessman appeared at the Lautoka Magistrates Court last week for allegedly fabricating a story that landed a man behind bars on sexual assault claims.

Saiyad Faiyaz Aslam Khan was charged with two counts of conspiracy to defeat justice and interference with witness.

According to the court, Mr Khan and an accomplice conspired with two other people knowingly, and maliciously accused a 48-year-old man for the offence of sexual assault.

In addition, Mr Khan is also alleged to have also blamed a second man from a mosque in Lovu.

The accused appeared before Magistrate Bandula Gunaratne.

Divisional prosecutor ASP Anil Prasad strongly opposed the businessman's bail application, saying the accused had breached a High Court order when he allegedly approached people to accuse someone of a crime.

"He is accused of a serious charge of rape before the High Court and one of his bail conditions was to be on good behaviour," said the prosecutor.

"But he clearly breached his bail conditions by interfering with the course of justice."

Mr Khan's lawyer Victor Sharma said his client's High Court case was not relevant to the magistrates court case.

He said his client should be considered innocent until proven otherwise.

However, Magistrate Gunaratne agreed with the prosecution that Mr Khan should remain in remand during the case.

He said the accused had already breached a High Court bail condition.

The defence lawyer for the wrongly accused man, Iqbal Khan, said his client had maintained his innocence.

"He spent 48 hours in jail for something he didn't do," he said.

"I'm very pleased with the actions taken by police and their investigations that allowed for my client to walk free."

The case will be recalled on February 16.

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