3 Dec 2002

Solomons court gives life sentence to killer of NZ man

5:48 am on 3 December 2002

The Solomon Islands high court has given a life sentence to Uriel Buarafi who was found guilty of murdering New Zealander Kevin O'Brien at the beginning of this year.

Handing down his judgment, the chief justice, Sir John Muria, said the court didn't accept Buarafi's defence of diminished responsibility on the ground of provocation.

Buarafi fatally stabbed Kevin O'Brien on a construction site in Honiara where they were both employed.

After the incident, Buarafi went to Malaita where he at times stayed with his extended family and where he had also met his uncle, the then police minister, Benjamin Una.

A relative of Kevin O'Brien's widow, who wants to remain unnamed, said the verdict was a win for the return of law and order in the country.