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A Tongan magistrate on Monday questioned why two police officers have not been charged with the murder of a visiting New Zealand policeman who died last week after being beaten in a police cell.
A prisoner in the cell with Kali Fungavaka has been charged with murder, but two policemen also arrested in the case have only been charged with assault.
Fungavaka, who won a bravery award in New Zealand in 2006, was arrested 10 days ago for “minor drunkenness” while in Tonga for a funeral.
He suffered head injuries when assaulted in his cell and died later in hospital.
When the three arrested men appeared in court on Monday, Magistrate Pita Soakimi queried why only the civilian in the cell with Fungavaka was charged with murder.
However, the prosecution said the investigation was ongoing and a further examination on the victim's body would be carried out in New Zealand.
Tongan police commissioner Grant O'Fee issued a statement saying he could not comment on the circumstances leading up to the death but promised a “robust and professional inquiry”. - AFP