Bail application refused for convicted cop

A police officer who was convicted and sentenced to three years in prison for causing grievous bodily harm to another senior police officer has been refused bail by the National Court.

Stanley Poga from Mikin village in Chimbu’s Chuave district was convicted and sentenced to jail on September 28 by Justice George Manuhu at the Waigani National Court.

This was after he assaulted the Director of the National Fraud and Anti-Corruption Directorate, Matthew Damaru, on the morning of April 30, 2015.

Since his sentence, he filed an appeal in the Supreme Court against that conviction and sentence on 15th October.

While awaiting that appeal to go for hearing, Poga filed an application in the National Court seeking bail after conviction.

With this type of application, he had to demonstrate to the court “exceptional circumstances” seeking bail.

He applied for bail on medical grounds, his incomplete work relating to the police force and National Fraud Squad and also pleaded receiving threats issued by other inmates, among others.

Since his imprisonment, he had been admitted to the Accident and Emergency Unit at the Port Moresby General Hospital and was treated.

He also underwent an operation at the Pacific International Hospital for his medical condition.

It was put before the court that he had a long medical history of hypertension and diabetes.

Despite his medical condition being a valid ground, Justice Panuel Mogish took note of the Chief Justice’s ruling on a Supreme Court bail application by the former Western Governor, Ati Wobiro, where the court strongly warned about “well-to-do” applicants using medical conditions to avoid time in jail.

Justice Mogish then ruled that apart from the symptoms of his medical condition, observations made by doctors, the type of medications that have been prescribed to him and future medical operations.

“There is no evidence that those medical ailments are life threatening, warranting grant of bail. In the absence of such evidence, I am reluctant to grant bail,” said the judge.

He refused to grant bail but ordered that Poga remain at the hospital until he has undergone further operations or has fully recovered from any operation.

Sally Pokiton