18 Oct 2019

Samoan assassination case: Closed bail hearing decision pending

5:06 pm on 18 October 2019

Samoa's High Court has yet to decide on a government application for a closed bail hearing for two men charged with conspiring to assassinate the prime minister.

Samoa's PM Tuilaepa Sailele Malielegaoi

Samoa's PM Tuilaepa Sailele Malielegaoi Photo: RNZI Autagavaia Tipi Autagavaia

The Attorney-General's Office cited Prime Minister Tuilaepa Sailele Malielegaoi's safety as a reason for seeking the closed hearing, the Samoa Observer reports.

Assistant Attorney General Magele Leone Su'a told the court that while the suspects were remanded, the threat to the prime minister remained significant.

The state also sought to stop the media reporting details of the bail hearing.

Ms Su'a urged the court to take precautionary measures and warned of harm if such information was made available and publicised by the media.

Lemai Faioso Sione and Malele Paulo, also known as King Faipopo, have both pleaded not guilty to the charge.

A third suspect Taualai Leiloa has pleaded guilty.

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