Two men plead not guilty to car booth death

By Rula Su’a – Vaai

APIA, SAMOA TUESDAY 22 MAY 2018: Anzac Matavale and Feagaiga Touli from Lauli’i village have denied anything to do in connection with the death of a 44 year old man from Fusi Safata in April this year.

Matavale and Touli have entered not guilty pleas through their respective lawyers, when they appeared in the Supreme Court this week.

The defendants are two of four men accused of murder in relation to a man found dead in the trunk of a taxi. The other two men, Iopu Taimalie and Iapese Elisara did not enter any pleas as they asked the court to give them time to meet with their lawyers.

According to the police investigations, the deceased caught a taxi to Lauli’i. When the taxi arrived at Lauli’i, the passenger allegedly ran off without paying his taxi fare and some untitled men of the village went after him and brought him back to the taxi.

“The deceased was placed in the trunk of the taxi and the taxi driver drove to the police station to report the passenger for not paying his taxi fare.”

However, upon arrival at the police station, the man was found dead in the trunk of the taxi suspected of suffocation. Police said the deceased was visiting his sister who lives at Lauli’i.

Justice Leiataualesā Daryl Clarke has adjourned the matter to the 28 May for Taimalie and Elisara to enter their pleas and to set a hearing date for Matavale and Touli.

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