23 Apr 2012

Tuvalu court jails two Fijians for killing Chinese seafarer

1:17 pm on 23 April 2012

Two Fijian men have been convicted of murder by the High Court in Tuvalu for their role in the death of a Chinese seafarer in Tuvalu.

Epeli Yasava Kamikamica and Samuela Dolesau were crew members onboard a Fiji-registered fishing vessel, K Camelia.

The Fiji Times reports that the court heard the men resented the manner in which the Chinese chief engineer acted towards them on the day he was killed, April 14 last year, when the boat was docked in Tuvalu.

The chief engineer allegedly swore at them when the Fijians complained about being regularly given fish bait for food instead of the better food which Chinese crew members were given.

The two Fijians said they did not intend to kill the chief engineer when they later beat him.

The defence counsel said the two men were provoked.

Justice Gordon Ward found a third Fijian crew member not guilty of murder for his role in the incident.