23 May 2002

Fiji lawyer wants police charged over brutality

10:20 am on 23 May 2002

The Fiji lawyer who's laid complaints about alleged police brutality says violence against people in custody appears to be on the increase.

Faizal Koya is pressing for criminal charges to be laid against three officers in the Nadi station after his client, Narendra Michael, was admitted to intensive care following a beating.

He says his client went voluntarily to the station for questioning over an incident and a confession was forced out of him over 48 hours.

Mr Koya says this is not the first time a beating has occurred.

"it is becoming quite prevalent at this point in time. There has been other complaints from different individuals and I've liased with some senior officers and I've been told I should be getting some form of response. Basically, I'm expecting an investigation, but my letter has requested that at the conclusion of my client's being interviewed I'm expecting certain people who are responsible to be charged."

Mr Koya says he'll take further action if the police do not press charges within 14 days.