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Case Note Corner: Why knowing the difference between acquittal vs discharge is important

Key Takeaway The Criminal Procedure Act (2009) in Fiji allows the Court to acquit or discharge an accused. An “acquittal” order frees an accused from those proceedings whereas a “discharge order” does not. In Drose v State [2019] FJHC 113 (Drose v State), the Accused was discharged from the Magistrate Court after prosecution informed the Court that it was not going to proceed against the Accused. The Accused appealed to the High Court against the “discharge order” and asked for an “acquittal order”. The Case In the High Court case of Drose v State [2019] FJHC 113; HAA87.2018 (22 February 2019) Justice Madigan set aside an order of a Magistrate’s Court to discharge the accused and substituted

Safety First, Social Media Second: getting the download on the Online Safety Act 2018

Key Points The Online Safety Act 2018 (Act) was enacted in May 2018 and has yet to be gazetted. The Act is the first of its kind to be introduced in Fiji. This reform means victims of online abuse will be able to seek redress outside of making a claim of libel and will also significantly increase the penalties that perpetrators may receive from the Court. Introduction The internet is often described as a lawless frontier where people find it difficult to obtain redress for harmful and defamatory comments. As access to the internet hits saturation point, the Fijian government has taken the first steps to better regulate harmful uses of the platform, including harmful jokes, revenge, retributi

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