4 Mar 2013

Prosecution in Tonga closes cases in preliminary inquiry into death of NZ police officer

6:55 am on 4 March 2013

The defence in the preliminary inquiry into the death of New Zealand police officer Kali Fungavaka will make their submissions tomorrow at the Magistrates court in Nuku'alofa.

Matangi Tonga reports the prosecution closed its case last week submitting there is a case for trial at the Supreme Court in Nuku'alofa.

The Magistrate adjourned the inquiry on Thursday to tomorrow to give the defense time to prepare for submissions before making his decision.

The six accused, who include five police officers and one civilian, are represented by defence counsel Mele Kioa, 'Ofa Pouono and Palu Taufateau.

Five months after the victim's death, the inquiry provided for the first time evidence as to what allegedly took place after the victim was arrested and detained on the 17th of August, last year.

The court heard from a New Zealand pathologist last week about the victim's injuries including evidence of blows to the head and strangulation.