15 Apr 2010

New Zealand High Commissioner satisfied with Luganville investigation

3:59 pm on 15 April 2010

New Zealand's High Commissioner to Vanuatu says he's satisfied with the findings of an investigation into an alleged assault on a prisoner at the Luganville prison last November.

Jeff Langley's comments follow the state prosecution department's confirmation that it's received a file on the case, involving the prison's New Zealand adviser, and is awaiting sufficient information to have the police investigate.

Prisoners say the adviser escorted another New Zealander into the facility to assault an inmate who was the prime suspect of a robbery at his house.

Mr Langley says the Department of Correctional Services conducted a thorough investigation of the alleged incident.

"We had a detainee making claims on the one hand, others who were present saying that those things didn't happen, clearly everybody involved had got themselves in a situation where there wasn't an open transparent or independent way of making sure that those sort of claims can't be proved or disproved. So I think the department of correctional services here moved to try and put in some systems to make sure that that doesn't happen."

Jeff Langley says he's not aware of the authorities taking the matter any further.