Six men, including five Tongan police officers, have been
freed on bail after being charged with the manslaughter of
New Zealand police officer Kali Fungavaka.
The six accused, one of whom was a detainee when Mr Fungavaka
suffered fatal injuries while in custody, were expected to be
released on bail yesterday afternoon, Matangi Tonga Online
Solicitor General Aminiasi Kefu did not object to the bail in
what he said was a very serious case.
"But we hope to have the trial as soon as possible due to the
seriousness of what happened and there is great concern from
all aspects of society for the case to be solved and we do
not want to prolong the true justice of this trial," he said.
The bail followed the arrest of three more officers charged
with Mr Fungavaka's death in a police cell after he was
arrested in Tonga on August 17.
One of the charged officers is a senior inspector and the
others are constables.
The six accused men were bailed at 2000 pa'anga ($1400) each
and with a 1000 pa'anga ($700) surety.
They were ordered by Nuku'alofa Magistrate's Court to
surrender their passports and are prohibited from travelling
All six are charged with manslaughter and an alternative
charge of causing grievous bodily harm.
The three officers arrested yesterday were Inspector Kelepi
Hala'ufia and constables Manu Tu'ivai and Tevita Vakalahi.
The three people initially charged were Semisi Kalisitiane
Manu and constables Salesi Maile and Fatai Faletau.
The six accused will be back before court on October 1.