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Correction Officers deny charges

November 26, 2021 3:00 am

Eight correction officers who allegedly assaulted Seremaia Naidole Momo two years ago have denied their charges in the Suva High Court.

Josefa Satini, Joji Ragamate, Waisea Sadranu, Nemani Vasuvulagi, Isei Rakaso, Josefa Boletakibureta, Pita Raikoso and Apisai Naqamu are charged with one count each for acts intended to cause grievous harm.

Initially, 10 corrections officers were to front court, however, one of the accused Lemeki Koroi passed away in 2019 while a second accused Ledua Tikoigau no longer resides in the country.

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It is alleged that on the 20th of February 2019 the corrections officers unlawfully caused grievous harm to Seremaia Momo by continuously punching him several times inside the Chief Operations Office in the Naboro Minimum Corrections Centre.

Rakaso, Raikoso and Boletakibureta are charged with one count of assault causing actual bodily harm.

Rakaso is also charged with one count of complicity in the suicide of another.

It is alleged that on the 20th of February 2019, Rakaso willfully procured the suicide of Seremaia Momo by telling him to kill himself with a plastic wire inside the Solitary Block in the Naboro Minimum Corrections Centre.

They pleaded not guilty and the matter has been adjourned to 22nd January for a pre-trial conference.

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