13 Mar 2007

Former Fiji soldiers in Bougainville to go to trial next week

8:03 pm on 13 March 2007

Four former Fiji soldiers are to go to trial on Wednesday next week in Buka, the main town in the Papua New Guinea province of Bougainville.

They face charges of belonging to an illegal army and drilling and training with an illegal army.

It is claimed that they ran a militia allegedly established by money scam operator Noah Musingku in the south of Bougainville.

The four, who have been in Bougainville illegally for 18 months, surrendered to police last month and have been in custody at Buka police station since then.

The provincial police commander, assistant commissioner Joseph Bemu, says there is no sign that another Fijian - the last of an original group of eight - who is continuing to hide out with Noah Musingku near Tonu at the south of Bougainville island, intends giving himself up.