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Two lawyers have been charged and fined by the Port Moresby Family Court for having committed adultery with their own female colleague.

It is understood that all three were in the employ of Jema Lawyers at the time of these events. The trio were found guilty by the court.

According to court files obtained by PNG SUN, the Principal of Jema Lawyers, McRonald Nale, and his employee, Nentipa Juki, were found to have involved in separate adulterous affairs with their former colleague and fellow lawyer, Leontine Ivano.

Ms Ivano’s husband, who wants to remain anonymous, commenced two separate proceedings in July 2021. The first proceeding in which Mr. Juki named as the defendant was concluded in November 2021. The second with Mr. Nale was concluded in February 2022.

In a sworn affidavit, the mother of two told the court between November 2020 and early February 2021, she moved out of matrimonial home and was living with her parents at Pacific Adventist University and elder brother at Korobosea. She admitted that during her absence from her matrimonial home, she had the extramarital affairs with the two lawyers.

Ms Ivano’s husband discovered the nature and extent of the adulterous relationships sometime in late February 2021 after having gone through her two phones which had records of messages, video calls, audio messages, and photos exchanged which were either sexual in nature and inappropriate for professional colleagues. He had accessed her phones after she had gone to sleep.

Ms Ivano further stated in her affidavit that she purposely withheld the details of her adulterous affairs with her two work colleagues out of fear of death, embarrassment, shame, and humiliation that she might be subjected to on account of extramarital affairs.

She continued that she had made voluntary confessions both in private with her husband and in public of her sexual affairs in the presence of Morata Village Court at a family gathering sometime in early March 2022. This was prior to the two proceedings at the Family Court.

Further, as per both Ms Ivano and her husband’s affidavits, the duo knowingly had the adulterous affairs with Ms Ivano.

Mr. Juki had been the husband’s colleague in law school at the University of Papua New Guinea and the Legal Training Institute.

Pertaining to Mr. Nale, that husband attested that he and his family would attend Jema Lawyers annual Christmas functions and that he was acquainted with him during those times apart from knowing the fact as he was her employer.

The husband of Ms Ivano has now referred the lawyers to the Papua New Guinea Law Society for disciplinary actions. Their conduct seriously breached professional, ethical and moral conducts that ought to be exercised by lawyers in the Nation and in the legal profession.


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