Appeal rejected in Fungavaka's murder case

The Tonga Court of Appeals has today in Nukuʻalofa upheld the conviction of a Tongan former Police Inspector sentenced to 11 years in prison after killing the New Zealand Policeman Kali Fungavaka.

In sentencing Kelepi Hala’ufia at the Supreme Court in July, Justice Charles Cato  accepted that Hala’aufia, using a black torch, had struck Kali with a heavy blow to the top of his head on the night of August 17, 2012 when police arrested him and brought to the Nuku’alofa Police station.

Justice Cato referred to medical evidence from a New Zealand pathologist which shows Fungavaka had a fractured skull.

Justice Cato said: “It is plain that this blow delivered from behind when Kali was held by two officers was with considerable force by Hala’ufia who did have had any regard at all for the wellbeing of his prisoner. I found that this was a material and indeed a substantial cause of his death.”

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