Defence lawyer says they will challenge supposed ‘admission’

Tevita Qaqa Kapawale in an earlier court hearing. Picture: FILE

Alleged killer on the high seas Tevita Qaqa Kapawale is challenging the confessions he made in his caution interview and also to a journalist.

The case of the murders of Qiritivabea Cagilabakomeli, Benjamin Semuel Sukera, Alfat Kodri, Eme Warma, and Samuela Sukera, attempted murder of Kaminieli Tucama and criminal intimidation of Mitieli Cama on the fishing vessel MV Tiro II, for which Mr Kapawale is charged was called before High Court judge Justice Daniel Goundar yesterday in the High Court in Suva.

Mr Kapawale’s Legal Aid counsel Mele Ratidara told the court the defence would be challenging the admissibility of the caution interview and the audio recording of the accused in their voir dire grounds, and sought seven days to file them.

State prosecutor Unaisi Tamanikayaroi told the court the State was intent on relying on both Mr Kapawale’s caution interview and an audio recording of an interview which he gave to a journalist.

He is alleged to have made the admissions in both.

Justice Goundar set the matter down for pre-trial conference on March 6. Mr Kapawale’s bail has been extended by the High Court.

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