5 Feb 2014

Ruling on prison death overturned

11:11 am on 5 February 2014

A Supreme Court judge in Samoa has acquitted a man charged with murder over the death of a mentally ill New Zealand man.

Hans Dalton, 38, was found dead in a drum of water at Tafaigata prison on Boxing Day in 2012.

The judge overturned the decision of a four person panel which found Jonathon Crichton guilty after less than two hours of deliberation.

Crichton is already in prison serving a life sentence for another murder.

He changed his original plea of guilty to not guilty telling the court he was confused by police questioning.

The judge will deliver his reasons for overturning the verdict on Friday.