16 Jul 2009

State lawyers in Samoa withdraw murder charge against former police officer

2:32 pm on 16 July 2009

Samoa's Chief Justice, Patu Falefatu Sapolu, has accepted an application by state lawyers to withdraw one count of murder against a former police officer, Tiumalumanaia Filipo Langkilde, after his first case was declared a mistrial two weeks ago.

The prosecution has changed it to the lesser charge of manslaughter because it cannot provide evidence to support the original charge.

The defendant has entered a guilty plea to one count of manslaughter, which carries a maximum penalty of ten years in jail.

The former police officer was charged following the death of a man last June alleged to have been involved in an affair with the accused's former partner.