Crime

Murder Trial: Two Former Police Officers Charged With Murder, Trial Continues Today

Kelepi Kolinisau and Selema Tikoenaburevere are charged in connection with the death of Josua Lalauvaki.
17 Oct 2019 10:29
Murder Trial: Two Former Police Officers Charged With Murder, Trial Continues Today
Suspended Police officers Selema Tikoenaburevere and Kelepi Kolinisau outside Court. Photo: Ronald Kumar.

The trial of the two former Police officers facing a murder charge will continue at the High Court in Suva today.

Kelepi Kolinisau and Selema Tikoenaburevere are charged in connection with the death of Josua Lalauvaki.

They are jointly charged with one count of murder and appeared before High Court Judge, Justice Vincent Pererra yesterday.

It is alleged the two former Police officers assaulted Mr Lalauvaki after an altercation outside a Suva nightclub on September 2, 2018.

Mr Lalauvaki died a few weeks later at the CWM Hospital as a result of injuries he suffered from the alleged assault by the Police officers.

During cross examination yesterday, second witness, Alifereti Gade told the court that he had seen Kolinisau kick and stomp on Mr Laulauvaki while he was lying on the ground.

He also told the court that he had been in the vehicle when they had brought Laulavaki, another man and two women to the Totogo Police Station.

He said the four had been aggressive on the way to the station.

Mr Gade added the two men had also attacked him in the vehicle and he was fending them off while sitting in the back.

Upon reaching the Totogo Police Station, the witness said he saw Kolinisau escort Laulavaki’s friend to the charge room when the man turned around and punched Kolinisau.

Mr Gade said he saw the two exchange punches and then both of them went inside the charge room.

However, when defence asked if that was the last time, he saw Mr Kolinisau that morning, Mr Gade denied it.

He said he later saw Kolinisau when he stomped and kicked Mr Laulavaki when the latter was lying on the ground between the wall of the Police station and a parked vehicle.

Towards the end of her cross examination, defence counsel Barbara Malimali asked Mr Gade if he could have been distracted during the morning of the incident with all the commotion that had happened.

Mr Gade agreed that he was distracted.

Edited by Percy Kean

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