29 Jun 2009

Pre-trial hearing underway for murder accused

5:52 pm on 29 June 2009

A witness has told the Manukau District Court that 37-year-old Olo Fiti was drunk the evening he was stabbed to death in Otara.

A depositions hearing is underway for Sam Simi, who is accused of murdering Mr Fiti in March.

A witness, Faranise Teo, told the court she had been at Sam Simi's Cooper Crescent home in Otara when Mr Fiti arrived with a box of beer.

Miss Teo said Mr Fiti was clearly intoxicated and went into the garage to play pool with other people at the property.

She says after a while she heard bottles smashing and came outside to find Mr Simi very angry, and that he told Olo Fiti to leave.

Earlier, a cousin of Olo Fiti's wife told the court he had driven Mr Fiti to visit friends in Otara the night he was killed.

Speaking through a Samoan interpreter, Olivia Tuavae said Mr Fiti had been drinking, but did not seem drunk when he dropped him off at a Preston Road address.

Sam Simi was arrested at Auckland Airport a day after the attack, about to board a flight to Samoa.