Avatai murder case goes to High Court

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PRINCIPAL Magistrate Fatimah Taeburi confirmed in court yesterday the case against the accused Ashley Ghapuika has been committed to the High Court for trial on murder charge.

She said that a committal has been made to the High Court and the accused will be called at the High Court on May 28.

She therefore told the Correctional Officers to bring the accused to the High Court on Friday.

Ashley Ghapuika of Rennell Island, Rennell-Bellona province was charged with the murder of a young man at Avatai village in West Rennell on February 15, 2021.

The allegation said that the deceased and his uncle were in their kitchen at Avatai Village, in west Rennell, trying to light a roll of cigarette.

It was when the deceased was trying to light his smoke, the suspect entered the door with a long bush knife and walked straight to where the deceased was standing and allegedly cut the deceased once on the back of his neck.

It is believed the deceased was not able to defend himself due to the sudden attack. The suspect later went outside from the kitchen and walked away with his bush knife full of blood.

The deceased was rushed to the Tigoa mini-Hospital in West Rennell in a vehicle but was confirmed dead by the nurse in charge.