Cops detained over armed robbery allegations

Two policemen have been arrested and refused bail over allegations they abused the authority of their office and forcefully searched and stole cash and items from a man while armed with an M-16 rifle.

23-year-old Pangia man, Joshua Yawijah, from Southern Highlands Province, and 46-year-old Dennis Aviupa, from Huon Gulf, Morobe, appeared from police custody at the Bomana courthouse this week.

They briefly appeared on Wednesday before Magistrate Mekeo Gauli, where their charges were read and explained to them in court before their cases were adjourned to next month.

They were arrested and charged by Police Internal Affairs Directorate on January 4 this year following investigations into their conduct after a complaint was lodged by the victim.

They were charged with armed robbery, abuse of office and deprivation of liberty under the Criminal Code Act.

It is alleged the two defendants used violence to steal from Billy Kauri a bag containing K707 cash, eight Cambridge cigarette packets valued at K160 and six Golden Cambridge Cigarette packets valued at K42 while armed with an M-16 rifle.

It is also alleged a mobile phone valued at K360, belonging to the complainant (Kauri), was stolen from him before he was unlawfully detained at the police cell against his will, without any charges.

The alleged incident took place between Dec 29, 2016 and Jan 1, 2017, between the areas of the Three-Mile General Hospital, Jack Pidik Park and Badili Police Station.

They were allowed Police bail at K300 however, that bail was forfeited because the charge of armed robbery is serious and Police and the District Court does not have jurisdiction to allow bail.

Sally Pokiton