31 Jul 2017

Tonga police abuse receding

8:42 am on 31 July 2017

The head of the Tonga Police's professional standards unit says the tide is turning when it comes to police misconduct.

Chief Inspector Meleane Taueli's comments came after it was revealed nine officers had been suspended over the past year.

Over the past five years 12 officers have been sacked for misconduct and five have been convicted of criminal offences.

The Central Police Station in Tonga's capital, Nuku'alofa.

The Central Police Station in Tonga's capital, Nuku'alofa. Photo: RNZI / Gareth Thomas

Ms Taueli says there are currently 16 criminal investigations underway within the force and 38 inquiries into disciplinary matters.

She said her unit was working hard to improve discipline in the force.

"I totally believe that the work undertaken from this unit will assist in our police officers doing the right thing. We identify some of the issues people complain about and we are going to do an awareness [campaign] to our police officers for them to comply with the law and also the police rules."

Meleane Taueli said the number of investigations seemed high but they were triggered by a public awareness campaign, informing the public about expectations of police and how they could complain.

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