3 men sent to jail for manslaughter

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THREE men who were found guilty of manslaughter relating to the death of a man, whose cadaver was found floating at sea in Usu’usue, North East Malaita were sent to jail last week.

Casper Maedani, Ben Anisi and Mostyn Sara were each charged with one count of manslaughter relating to the incident, which occurred on June 9, 2020.

Prosecution says that around 11pm and 12am, the deceased’s dead body was found at sea by some fisherman, and was taken to a nearby clinic; the medical worker identified that the deceased had some knife injuries on both his arms.

Prosecution said prior to the incident people in Ato village, Malaita province, saw the deceased residing at their village for some time before he went back to his village that night.

When he returned to his village, he took a fibre-glass canoe belonging to one of the accused without permission; some boys from the village went after the deceased and took the canoe back.

Meanwhile, Maedani, Anisi and Sara went after him, it was at that time a fight broke out in which the deceased sustained injuries to his arm.

According to the Doctor’s report there was no haemorrhage or fracture to the bones but that he might have probably died from drowning as a result of slash wounds on both his arms.

High Court Judge Justice Maelyn Bird in her sentence said she is assisted by the guidelines and principles used by the courts in like offences, in manslaughter cases the usual sentence that the court normally imposes is one of incarceration.

She told the three men that the incident occurred at night time is an aggravating feature,
“you used the cover of night to commit the offending, at night no one could see what type of assault was coming”.

She also told the accused men that “there is no justification to take a man’s life like you did”.

“You could have exercised restraint but you did not,” Ms Bird said.

Therefore, considering all the circumstances of the case, Bird imposed sentences – for Maedani he will serve three years imprisonment, Anisi three years imprisonment while Sara four years imprisonment.