Attempted murder accused to undergo psychiatric test

By Lanuola Tusani Tupufia – Ah Tong 21 February 2019, 12:00AM

A man charged with attempted murder of his relative in Fasito’o is awaiting an overseas psychiatrist to conduct a report on his mental state. 

Tifaga Aiono, 46, from Fasito’o appeared before the Supreme Court on Monday for criminal mention. 

He pleaded not guilty to the charge of attempted murder. 

Lawyer Tufuga Fagaloa Tufuga is representing Aiono and Fuifui Ioane is the prosecutor.  

Chief Justice, His Honour Patu Tiava’asue Falefatu Sapolu presided over the matter. 

In the Supreme Court, Tufuga requested for the matter to be deferred until an overseas psychiatrist is able to conduct a medical report for the accused. 

He said Aiono is not fit to stand trial due to his mental state. 

In response, Chief Justice Patu said an application of this nature is always supported with a medical report and evidence by the psychiatrist. 

“The Court must be satisfied that the accused is not fit to stand trial,” he said.  

“The matter is adjourned on 25 February for defense counsel to find out from the National Health, when this overseas psychiatrist will come to Samoa, and when will (he/she) be in a position to conduct a medical report on the mental status of the accused.” 

Aiono was denied bail following the incident that occurred in April last year at Fasito’o. 

The victim in the matter was allegedly attacked by Aiono with a machete in an “unprovoked incident” and luckily survived the ordeal.  

Speaking to the Samoa Observer, Tufuga said the accused had been receiving medical treatment from the mental health clinic at Moto’otua whilst being in custody. 

He added there was a medical report on the mental status of the accused from a local doctor, but the prosecution has sought another one from an overseas psychiatrist. 

Tufuga was appointed the lawyer for Aiono under the Court-appointed legal aid.

By Lanuola Tusani Tupufia – Ah Tong 21 February 2019, 12:00AM
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