18 Feb 2008

Seven jailed over Tonga riot crimes

4:29 pm on 18 February 2008

Seven people involved in the deadly riots in Tonga's capital, Nuku'alofa, have been sentenced to jail terms ranging from six months and 11-years.

The Matangi Tonga website reports that in sentencing the six men and one woman, Chief Justice Anthony Ford said everyone in Tonga would remember November 16th in 2006 as a day of infamy and shame, where anarchy prevailed.

Two men were sentenced to 11 years in jail for the destruction of businesses and other crimes.

Those given lesser sentences had faced charges such as riotous assembly, housebreaking and the destruction of property.

The Chief Justice said the destruction was an example of mob violence feeding upon itself.