Friday, June 25, 2010

Police charge tsunami prophet


by Shalveen Chand

Fiji Times - Friday, June 25, 2010
A PASTOR who allegedly predicted a tsunami would destroy Fiji on Wednesday has been released on bail.
Pastor Laione Nacevamaca appeared on charges related to a violation of the Public Order Act.
Also out on bail is Fiji Rugby Union chairman Viliame Gavoka who is alleged to have circulated electronic mail about a tsunami.
The men told Magistrate Irani Arachchi they understood the charges.
A plea was deferred after an application by defence lawyers.
Mr Nacevamaca is charged with maliciously fabricating and spreading by way of mouth that there would be a tsunami, earthquake and strong winds on June 23 at 2.30pm, causing public alarm.
Mr Gavoka was charged with spreading the rumours by e-mail about the tsunami and earthquakes and causing public alarm.
The court heard the two men had been in police custody since Sunday, June 22.
Lawyers Aseri Vakaloloma and Filimoni Vosarogo made bail applications saying the two men were willing to provide surety and surrender travel documents.
State prosecutor David Toganivalu said the State did not object to bail. Magistrate Arachchi granted bail after the two men presented sureties.
They were told to surrender their travel documents.
The magistrate also ordered Mr Nacevamaca to report to Nadi Police Station once a week and Mr Gavoka to the Sigatoka Police Station.
The case will be called at 2.15pm today to see if the men have surendered their passports.
The court ordered the two men to stop the spread of any more rumours.
Family members gathered outside the Suva Court to watch as the men were escorted to the premises by police.
Mr Gavoka and Mr Nacevamaca were surrounded by plainclothes officers and members of the police Ready Action Unit as they entered the court.



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