LOMUTUSI UIAGALELEI PLEA HEARING MOVED TO THURSDAY
Chief Justice Michael Kruse moved to postpone the plea agreement hearing between the government and Lomitusi Uiagalelei, who’s facing second degree assault and public peace disturbance charges.
According to the plea agreement that was read in High Court, Uiagalelei was to enter a guilty plea to the count of third degree assault, amended from second degree assault. Uiagalelei is also pleading guilty to the public peace disturbance according to the plea deal from the government.
Also in the plea deal, the defendant has agreed to a two- year probation recommended by the government and defense. The defendant also agreed not to contact the victim, to reside outside of Auasi, undergo anger management courses and pay a fine of $300.
The plea agreement goes on to say that the recommendations by the defense and the prosecution are not binding on the court, and if the court renders sentencing that is harsher than what was recommended the defendant cannot come back to withdraw his guilty plea.
While Kruse was asking the defendant questions regarding his plea of guilt the defendant did not answer immediately.
The Chief Justice then moved to postpone the plea agreement hearing for this coming Thursday and told attorney Marcellus Tala Uiagalelei to talk to his client about why the court is asking questions pertaining to his guilty plea.
According to the government Uiagalelei is accused of hitting another man with a shovel, during an altercation over the victim’s dog barking during evening prayers.
Assistant Attorney General Kimberly Hyde is prosecuting this matter.
The defendant is out on bail of $5,000 and was ordered by the court not to make direct or indirect contact with the victim. The court also ordered him to remain a law abiding citizen while his case is pending.
SENTENCING FOR ARTHUR BLAKE RESCHEDULED
The High Court was left with no choice but to reschedule sentencing in the government’s case against Arthur Blake due to the delay of the pre-sentence report from the Probation office.
According to Deputy Attorney General Mitzie Jessop Folau, the government had just received the pre-sentence report and cannot proceed with the sentencing that was scheduled to be heard in High Court yesterday.
Blake was initially charged with attempted murder, attempted first degree assault and public peace disturbance. However in a plea deal with the government the defendant pleaded guilty to second degree assault, which was amended from attempted first degree assault while the remaining charges were dismissed.
According to the government’s case the incident occurred December 29, 2011 where the victim was playing volleyball, and when the defendant approached him he was hiding the machete. The government claims that when the defendant was close to the victim he pulled out the machete and swung at the victim but he missed and then bystanders interfered and stopped the defendant.