Nai Lalakai trial: There are guidelines, says Wesley

The Fiji Times Editor-in-Chief Fred Wesley outisde the High Court in Suva today. Picture: JOVESA NAISUA

THERE are guidelines that need to be followed before letters are published, says The Fiji Times editor-in-chief Fred Wesley.
Wesley, who was the first to take the witness stand today for defence, said letters were treated like other stories.
He said there were guidelines he had to work within before he approved letters to be published in the Letters to the Editor column of The Fiji Times newspaper.
Wesley said he was not sure whether Ravula had sent the said letter to the lawyers before it was published.
He said as editor-in-chief of The Fiji Times, the editors of the three other publications – Nai Lalakai, Shanti Dut and the Sunday Times – that came under the Fiji Times umbrella reported to him.
Wesley said if he had seen the letter before it was published, he would have sent it to the lawyers.
He also clarified that the editors of the different publications were solely responsible for what they saw fit could run in their respective publications.
Wesley, together with Nai Lalakai editor Anare Ravula are each charged with one count each of aiding and abetting the publication of a seditious article, while Fiji Times publisher Hank Arts is charged with one count of publishing a seditious article in Nai Lalakai.
Letter writer Josaia Waqabaca is charged with one count of submitting for publication an article written by him with a seditious intention, while Fiji Times Ltd is charged with one count of printing a seditious publication.
Wesley will continue to be cross-examined by Assistant Director of Public Prosecutions Lee Burney as the trial continues before Justice Thushara Rajasinghe at the High Court in Suva tomorrow.
More in tomorrow’s edition of The Fiji Times and in our E-Edition.