Second suspect in Malaki Tauiliili’s death denied bail

By Rula Su’a – Vaai

APIA, SAMOA – TUESDAY 18 DECEMBER 2018: The second suspect in connection to the death of Jeremiah Malaki Tauiliili, has been denied bail and is eligible to reapply next Monday.

Suapaina Savaiinaea is facing a manslaughter charge and he and Herman Westerlund who was released on bail last week, appeared before His Honour the Chief Justice, Patu Tiava’asu’e Falefatu Sapolu yesterday.

Counsel for the defendants, Patrick Fepuleai, applied for Suapaina Savaiinaea to be released on bail, of which the Prosecutor did not oppose.

The deceased’s father, Sulamanaia Tauiliili was then granted permission by His Honour the Chief Justice to speak.

Sulamanaia Tauiliili told the court that he is mindful of the safety of the suspects and he asked the court not to grant bail.

Tauiliili said, Mr. Westerlund should never have been granted bail.

“Your Honour, we were not aware that this other suspect will be on bail. We have accepted the death of our child, but what if anything happens to these kids, who will be responsible,” he said.

“The accident is still fresh, and there is a lot of tension out there in my family due to the accident.”

His Honour accepted Sulumanaia’s request and denied bail for Suapaina saying that the court accepts the risks pointed out by Sulamania Tauiliili.

Patu said the court will be responsible if anything happens therefore Suapaina will be remanded in custody. As for Westerlund, he is to abide by the rules imposed by the court on his bail.

Chief Justice Patu told Suapaina, that he is eligible to reapply for bail next week, and that the family of the victim can also oppose.

Sulamanaia Tauiliili with his wife Nive Tauiliili, parents of the late Jeremiah Malaki Tauiliili outside court yesterday

Outside court Tauiliili told Talamua that they have accepted the death of his son; however the court should never have allowed bail for the other suspects.

“If I had known that the prosecutor will not oppose to the bail application for Mr. Westerlund, I would have objected,” said Sulamanaia.

“They should stay in jail, they are safe there, the accident is still fresh and that my family is hurting.”

The matter is adjourned to Monday next week.

Meanwhile, the third suspect appeared in the District Court today charged with assault. The matter has been postponed to 29 January 2019.