24 Jun 2005

Fiji police lack evidence to charge coup funders

3:30 pm on 24 June 2005

Fiji's police commissioner says there is insufficient evidence to lay charges against those who funded the May 2000 coup.

Andrew Hughes says cash had changed hands to fund the coup and police have a good idea of who some of these people were.

But Mr Hughes says the negotiations and dealings occurred behind closed doors and the only witnesses were those involved.

He says the transactions were in cash and there are no financial records that police can pursue.

Several years ago, Lt Col Viliame Seruvakula, the commander of the Third Battalion Fiji Infantry Regiment, had publicly revealed that he was offered 260,000 Fiji dollars in cash in a brief case to take his troops in support of the coup but had refused.