TONGAN MURDERER WON’T FACE DEATH PENALTY

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TONGAN MURDERER WON’T FACE DEATH PENALTY

NUKU‘ALOFA, Tonga (Taimi Tonga, Nov. 16) – Tonga Chief Justice Robin Webster has decided not to impose the death penalty on the first convicted murderer on the main island of Tongatapu in more than 20 years.

Tevita Siale Vola, 27, was found guilty of the murdering Salesi Taufalele during a drunken fight earlier this year.

Sitting at the Supreme Court in Nuku‘alofa, Chief Justice Robin Webster has ruled life imprisonment, and not the death penalty, is an appropriate punishment.

Chief Justice Webster said the Supreme Court’s view was that for those convicted of murder in Tonga, life imprisonment was the rule and the death sentence an exception.

The judge said he did not find the offence was of an exceptionally depraved and heinous character, nor, on account of its design and the manner of its execution, a source of grave danger to society at large.

November 17, 2005

Taimi Tonga: www.taimiotonga.com/

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