5 Nov 2014

Postmortem results point to foul play in Solomons monk's death

5:05 pm on 5 November 2014

Police in Solomon Islands say autopsy results point to foul play in the death of a Melanesian brother in West Guadalcanal last week.

A villlage on Guadalcanal, Solomon Islands.

Photo: RNZI/ Walter Zweifel

The Police Media Unit says a suspect has been detained in relation to the death and the suspect's vehicle has also been seized as it is believed to have been used in the incident.

Fearing arbitrary retaliations, police have urged relatives of the deceased and members of the public to refrain from taking the law into their own hands and to allow police to complete their investigations.

Investigations that Police Commissioner Frank Prendergast are being actively pursued.

"I can confirm that we are treating that event as a suspicious death. There's been a postmortem conducted and we are just considering the results of that and that inquiry is very active. There's a range of scenarios we are looking at and I can't say too much more, but I can confirm we are treating that death as suspicious."

The Melanesian Brotherhood is a religious order which gained international recognition for their peace-making work during the ethnic crisis in Solomon Islands after Seven brothers were tortured and killed by Warlord Harold Keke while trying to broker peace for the nation.

Given that history this most recent death has struck a sensitive chord in Solomon Islands and local media report the incident has shocked members of the public.