NEWS

Murder Retrial Dates to be Fixed in May

A retrial was ordered by the Fiji Court of Appeal last week. On June 30, 2015, Yang Xian Jiong was sentenced to the mandatory life sentence with a minimum term of 18 years imprisonment to be served, before a pardon may be considered by the President of Fiji.
16 Mar 2019 10:00
Murder Retrial Dates to be Fixed in May
Yang Xian Jiong outside the High Court in Suva on March 15, 2019.

A 37-year-old man who was convicted and sentenced to life imprisonment for the murder of Robert Fong appeared at the High Court in Suva yesterday.

A retrial was ordered by the Fiji Court of Appeal last week. On June 30, 2015, Yang Xian Jiong was sentenced to the mandatory life sentence with a minimum term of 18 years imprisonment to be served, before a pardon may be considered by the President of Fiji.

In court yesterday, state prosecutor from the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions, Meli Vosawale, told the court that the matter was listed to fix a hearing date for the retrial. He also told the court that there were admissions in Yang’s caution interview.

Justice Daniel Goundar had adjourned the case for a pre-trial conference and to fix trial dates to May 6. He further remanded Yang in custody and issued a production order for him to be present in court on his next court date.

Background:

Yang was convicted for murdering Robert Fong on April 8, 2012, in Suva. He with two others went to Victoria Pa­rade, opposite a service station, jumped on the complain­ant and repeatedly stabbed him to death. Robert Fong was rushed to hospital, but died thereafter.

Yang had appealed his conviction and sentence on the grounds that he learned High Court Judge erred in law and fact by failing to give reasons on why he failed to ac­cept during the voir dire as well as the trial proper that the appellant’s confession had been obtained unfairly, the learned trial Judge’s directions on the elements of murder in his summing-up lacked fairness and objectivity when he used examples that fitted the prosecutor’s case, the learned trial Judge caused the trial to miscarry when he unfairly commented in the summing-up that the appellant had ad­mitted the offence and the learned trial Judge caused the trial to miscarry when he commended in the summing-up that the appellant was aiding and abetting the commission of murder despite the appellant being the only person in the information.

The three Judges panel of Fiji Court of Appeal on March 7, 2019, made the decision to allow the appeal and quashed the conviction.

The panel also ordered a new trial in the case and had remanded Yang in custody.

The three Fiji Court of Appeal Judges panel consisted of Judge Chandana Prematilaka, Judge Anthony Fernando and Judge Priyantha Nawana.

Edited by Susana Tuilau

Feedback: ashna.kumar@fijisun.com.fj

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