NEWS

Police Have One Suspect

A suspect is being questioned in relation to the death of a 14-year-old girl whose body was found at Loloma Beach at Pacific Harbour on Monday afternoon. Police Commissioner Brigadier-General
17 Mar 2016 12:05
Police Have  One Suspect
Children from Lepanoni Village and Pacific Harbour turned out in numbers to attend the vigil of 14 year-old Mere Ailevu at Loloma beach in Deuba last night. Photo: Ronald Kumar.

A suspect is being questioned in relation to the death of a 14-year-old girl whose body was found at Loloma Beach at Pacific Harbour on Monday afternoon.

Police Commissioner Brigadier-General Sitiveni Qiliho confirmed yesterday that the case was now classified as a brutal murder. This follows the post mortem examination on Tuesday.

“We now have a suspect in custody in regards to this heinous crime and we are also questioning other people who may know or maybe involved in the crime. And I can assure you that all those responsible will be brought to justice in quick time,” Brigadier-General Qiliho said.

Mere Ailevu, a Year Seven student at Lomary Primary School in Galoa, was reported missing from home on Sunday night. Her body was found by a security officer after 4pm on Monday.  The news has left the community in shock. Deeply saddened by the news, Pacific Harbour residents Cina Munch and Alana Bentley organised a vigil yesterday where members of the Pacific Harbour community and surrounding areas came together to say prayers and light candles in memory of Mere.

Over 100 people from the surrounding communities took time to light candles, show their support and say a prayer for little Mere and her family.

Brigadier-Generla Qiliho said they would not limit their investigation on the perpetrator of the crime but would also look at it holistically; that people were held more accountable and responsible for looking after their children and women were the most vulnerable in the communities.

“I also plead with parents to be more responsible in looking after our children and our ladies,” Brigadier-General Qiliho said.

“To religious and community leaders, please be more responsible in looking after our young ones. We can’t afford to have this continuing. We will also be looking at the angles of negligence on parental responsibilities.”

He said this cruel crime and act was unacceptable and they have been speaking about it for months, including Government leaders.

“We have strengthened our investigation teams with two teams from our Criminal Investigation Department (CID) to assist the team in Navua who are investigating the case,” he said.

 

‘Enough is enough’

“No child should fall victim to such brutal attacks. Mere is from a village that is very close to Pacific Harbour and part of our much loved community. Our hearts go out to her family and we feel the time has come for communities to stand together and say enough is enough. Preying on innocent children is simply not right and anything we can do to raise awareness that these horrible crimes are happening on our doorstep is a step in the right direction,” Pacific Harbour resident Ms Munch said.

“It could have been any of our children. We are very fortunate to live in the beautiful islands of Fiji where our children can play freely without worry. We need to make people aware that these sick monsters are out there and unless we start speaking out and educating people about the rise in child abuse, our children will not be safe,” Ms Bentley added.

 

Edited by Rusiate Mataika

Feedback:  aqela.susu@fijisun.com.fj



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