Not exactly Danny Nikolic, but his brother John, faces a few issues.....
ACCUSED Aussie drug smuggler John Nikolic is receiving counselling in his Fiji prison while his wife, Yvette, spends her days lying on her bed in her jail cell, reading books.
Details of the lonely prison life of the Nikolics have been revealed exclusively to the Herald Sun by prison sources, in the lead-up to their High Court trial next week.
In an unexpected twist, a pre-trial conference yesterday heard drug importation charges were back on the table for Yvette, after being removed without explanation late last year. Extra charges have also been brought against both Yvette and John by the Fiji Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions.
Attending the pre-trial conference in Suva yesterday, former Melbourne horse trainer John Nikolic was handcuffed and looked drawn and worried.
In contrast, an uncuffed and smiling Yvette looked relaxed.
Assistant Director of Public Prosecutions Lee Burney said there had been new developments in the case and the prosecution would be drawing heavily on the Nikolics’ “caution interview” during the trial.
Lawyers for the Nikolics have made it clear they want to cross-examine the officer who conducted the interview.
If convicted of drug smuggling, both Yvette and John face possible life sentences. Prison sources this week told the Herald Sun the Nikolics spent most of their time inside their respective Suva remand centres and rarely had an opportunity to go outdoors for fresh air or sunshine.
The once social pair has not had a single visitor since being moved to their Suva prisons more than a fortnight ago, ahead of a High Court trial, which begins on Monday. The trial is expected to run for at least seven days.
Before being moved to Suva they had been remanded in Lautoka prisons since mid-last year. And while John Nikolic’s physical health miraculously seemed OK after he reportedly downed a toxic cocktail of liquid cocaine when his yacht, Shenanigans, was raided by Fiji authorities at Denarau Marina on June 22, his mental health was poor and he was receiving psychological counselling because he had “overdosed himself”, prison sources said.
The Nikolics face charges of drug importation and possession. They are also charged with weapons offences, after allegedly failing to declare guns and ammunition on their firstname.lastname@example.org