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Kiribati Man faces charge after sea rescue from dingy in New Zealand

The Dominion Post
Thursday, 29 January 2009

Kiribati man who was rescued after being found drifting in a dinghy with his nephew off Hawke's Bay faces a charge of operating a dinghy causing danger.

Itintarawa Baraniko appeared in Napier District Court yesterday charged under the Maritime Transport Act. If found guilty, he could be fined up to $10,000 or face up to a year in jail.

Baraniko, 38, and his nephew Baraniko Tebeau, 21, had to be rescued after being swept 26 kilometres out to sea during a fishing trip on the Tukituki River on July 1 last year.

The men, who were not wearing life jackets, were swept out to sea by the swollen river about 7.30pm on June 30.

Their flimsy 2.5-metre fibreglass dinghy was seen bobbing in waves 22 hours later by a passing freighter. They were rescued by a coastguard boat.

Baraniko, who speaks little English, was remanded to reappear in court next month.

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