24 Feb 2005

Solomons judge presiding in murder trial to rule on admissibility of police interviews

7:16 am on 24 February 2005

The judge overseeing the trial, on murder charges, of three former Solomons militants, is expected to rule tomorrow, on whether or not to admit two police interviews as evidence.

Harold Keke, Ronnie Cawa and Francis Lela, have pleaded innocent to the murder of the cabinet minister Father Augustine Geve on the 20th of August 2002 at Haleatu Village, on the Weathercoast of Guadalcanal.

The defence has asked the judge, Frank Kabui, not to accept as prosecution evidence, the interviews carried out by police with Cawa and Lela.

The lawyers for the public solicitor's office, James Godbolt and Michelle Swift told the High Court in Honiara that their clients had been induced to give the interviews through several promises from both local and assistance mission police.

The trial, which is now in its fourth week, is expected to resume after the ruling on the application.