21 May 2012

Vanuatu police may sue after coroner's report dismissed

2:18 pm on 21 May 2012

Vanuatu's police chief says he is considering seeking damages over a coroner's report that said the country's police force placed itself above the law.

The police commissioner, Joshua Bong, had sought a Supreme Court ruling on the report which has never been made public.

Justice Daniel Fatiaki has now dismissed the report written by a New Zealand judge, Nevin Dawson, who was looking into the death in police custody of a prisoner, John Bule, in March of 2009.

Judge Dawson was highly critical of the failure by police to investigate the death and poor management within the force.

He was also subjected to police intimidation during the inquiry.

But Mr Bong successfully claimed the report was misleading, biased and racist.

He says to protect the reputation of the Vanuatu police he is looking at suing for damages.