25. Kiaps and their former role as defending officer

Paul Quinlivan’s Snapshots

BSeveral members have remarked on my comment, in Snapshot No. 22, that Mert Brightwell obtained ‘a well-deserved acquittal’ in the case against Meka-Ori and they have asked whether there were other notable cases where a Kiap acted as Defending Officer. The answer is, of course, that there were hundreds! In fact I have often said (and this is despite the fact that it was because of my efforts that the Public Solicitor’s Office was created) that, except for those few cases where a legal defence could be argued, Kiaps provided the best defence for the vast majority of non-city cases. And I note that, as I write (26 January 2001), the distraught lawyers of the Torres Strait Islands Legal Service are giving the precise argument I used to give, as their sworn evidence in a Coroner’s inquest: that they have neither adequate time nor true linguistic ability to talk to their clients. My sympathies are all with them, and their constituents! But times were a-changing and, although the Public Solicitor was created to assist Papua New Guineans who had a civil case against someone and not to take over the Defending Officers’ job, the new judges wanted to be surrounded by lawyers in Court and Chief Justice Sir Alan Mann deferred to them. But, with his usual graciousness, he also arranged for The ‘Q’ Reports to be published by the Government Printer as a historical record – and I would point out that it was he who gave them that name, not me! He also arranged for a notice to be included, when everything was finished, asking everyone to send in ‘reports’ of cases which I had not published so that they could be printed in a final volume. 
If that had happened we would now have access to hundreds of cases showing that Kiaps can be justly proud of their efforts as Defending Officers. Unfortunately Sir Alan handed to someone else the supervision of the project and, when he went into hospital, the whole plan was frustrated. The resulting saga is a very sad one and, beyond me saying that we have lost most of even the little we had, cannot be recorded here. Part of what would have been published has survived and, with the references to previous Snapshots, which I have added, it reads: Category ‘B’: Notable Defences in Individual Cases

Before listing these reports I would repeat that these cases were reported solely because, as Honorary External Tutor for University of Queensland Law Students, I had a need to provide ‘local materials’. When that need ceased, I stopped, and, after that, it was Law Reports that I produced, which were limited to what the Judge said, and not what the Defence was. I would therefore like to repeat my apology to those whose Notable Defence is not included. Note also that the duties of Kiaps and Crown Prosecutors in regard to the defence of certain cases are explained in items (vii) and (viii) at the end of Sir Beaumont’s speech of 12 February 1952 (see Snapshot No.8). Among the ‘cautionary tales’ the climax to B.25 gives a unique insight into the personality of Sir Beaumont Phillips C.J. (See Snapshot No. 11, where the ancient Luluai said, ‘Ask the Big Judge here … It was he who wrote the letter…’)

B01 TOWATIA (Copley) – See Snapshot No. 3
B02 TOLUBUNG (Copley) – Superior Orders; Reichstag Speech
B03 KABO (MacIlwain) – See Snapshot No. 4
B04 LAPAE (Leabeater) – See Snapshot No. 7
B05 IKUAR (Royce Webb) ‘Boanarra case’ Madang 24 March 1952
B06 LAM (Seale) cross exam of White Woman in Wau
B07 GUMI (Parrish) – See Snapshot No. 21
B08 BULAI (Parrish) heavy cross exam of White witness
B09 IMANAIVA (Humphries) 27 Oct 1952 burglary of Bignold’s house
B10 KAUBA (Wau) (Ernie Britten) causing new V.J. instructions
B11 ORI s/o AIS’E (Humphries), unlawfully in house, Bignold J acquitted
B12 ROMBUSA (Humphries) provocation … standard
B13 Telefomin Killings (Peter Lalor) Sudden Emergency
B14 Kingsley Jackson defence of man charged with rape of ex-nun
B15 Defence by Gerry Szarka of TIMIO SIONI, 8 May 1951
B16 Defence by Tom Ellis of grandfather & daughter, infanticide, 10 May 1951
B17 unknown ADO in R. v. IARUMAGIN and 7 others 6 May 1955, Kelly J
B18 R. v. TOGASU of Moarasa 22-2-56, Gore J
B19 Bob Daugherty’s def. of Minj man by claiming ‘hallucinogenic mushrooms’
B20 GEBU, Bignold, Kerema Eric Flower def. attempt rape Euro
B21 Phil Robb defence at Mount Hagen that offence occurred in Papua
B22 Nep Blood’s defence of PORGE
B23 MULI and N’DREYE, Manus, cargo cult, (Bill Bloxham D.O.)
B24 3 June 1957 my legal opinion re defence by senior Kiaps
B25 Jameson (No. 2) cautionary tale re qualified Counsel – See Snapshot No. 11
B26 Ronald Schmidt; Judge Kelly criticises lawyer Foy’s treatment of Kiap Magistrate
B27 Stanis ToBOROMILAT 24-11-53 Phillips C.J. chides Dudley Jones & Craig Kirke.


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