Accused answer vehicular manslaughter charge in Court

A village mayor and a prominent local farmer are facing charges of vehicular manslaughter following a car crash at Leulumoega in November that left one man dead.

The village mayor of Leulumoega, Talosagatuufaatasi Fa'atagi, and Mikaele Maiava, of Moamoa, are facing charges of “motor vehicle manslaughter”. 

The matter was initially called in the District Court before it was referred to the higher Court which has the jurisdiction to rule on the alleged offence. 

Talosagatuufaatasi was represented by lawyer, Arthur Lesa. Maiava on the other hand was unrepresented in court for the prosecution to finalise charges. 

Justice Leiataualesa Daryl Clarke adjourned the matter without plea until March 16 2020. 

He urged Mr. Maiava to seek legal counsel considering the seriousness of the charge against him. 

Talosagatuufaatasi, by contrast, was asked to reside in village other than Leulumoega due to prosecution witnesses residing in the village

The accused are remanded on bail on conditions requiring them to surrender all travel documents and sign with the nearest Police station every Friday. 

Taloasgatuufaatasi was behind the wheel of a white Hilux truck while Mr. Maiava was in a separate vehicle when the two vehicles crashed at Leulumoega in November. 

A 23-year-old man from the village of Vaiusu, Aniseko Sagato, who died as a result of the crash was a passenger in one of the vehicles driven by the accused.  


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