Condom incident officers found guilty

The Waigani National Court will soon hand down its sentence against two police officers, based at the Boroko Police station, after they were found guilty of forcing a woman to swallow condoms in 2015.

The case against Southern Highlands man Joshua Yawijah and Wabag woman Jacklyn Tanda was adjourned to this week after they were found guilty last week.

The two probationary officers were found guilty of one count of unlawful deprivation of personal liberty, two counts of forcing a person to do indecent acts and one count of abuse of office.

A primary evidence in the case was the video of the event on 4 December 2015, at the Boroko Police station, when both officers were on duty.

The victim was taken to the station by two men, dressed as civilians, after they asked if she had money. At the station, her purse was emptied, where male condoms were found.

She was threatened by Yawijah, who had an iron bar in his hand to chew and swallow two male condoms.

While being forced to chew and swallow the condom, Tanda laughed and took videos of her, one of which went viral on social media.

Tanda, in her defense, said she was at the scene but did not do anything. Trial judge Panuel Mogish refused her denial.

He accepted the victim’s evidence, which clearly identified both officers at the scene, and Tanda taking the videos. Her voice was also recorded and heard in the video.

Yawijah also denied being at the scene, that he was in the Southern Highlands. However, his name was on the duty roster between December 4th and 7th 2015. He later booked a flight to Mt Hagen on December 9, and was later apprehended and flown back to Port Moresby from Mendi, for police to commence their investigations.

The court found compelling evidence against the two officers. Even the victim was confident in identifying them and remained unshaken in her testimony during cross-examination at trial.

Yawijah and Tanda are yet to be sentenced by the court.

(The case was presided at Bomana)

Sally Pokiton