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Inmate Tells Of Seeing Cord Around Deceased's Neck

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Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

Auckland, Dec 11 NZPA - A prison inmate has told of seeing his radio cord taken into a cell shortly before a fellow inmate was allegedly strangled.

The inmate, from Auckland Prison at Paremoremo, was giving evidence at a hearing in North Shore District Court to decide whether four inmates should stand trial in connection with the death of Tue Faavae in March this year.

Three of the inmates are charged with Faavae's murder. The fourth is charged with being an accessory after the fact.

All the accused have name suppression, as do all the prison inmates giving evidence at this week's depositions hearing.

The inmate giving evidence today was originally charged with Faavae's murder, but the charge has since been dropped.

Giving evidence via closed circuit video, he said he saw Faavae inside the cell of one of the accused seeking to use a phone which that inmate had.

That accused was coming and going from his cell, as was a second accused.

He said he then saw his radio cord wrapped around the wrist of the second accused, who walked into the cell of the first accused.

A few minutes later, the first accused asked him to come into the cell.

He said that upon arrival, he saw Faavae lying face-up on the floor, feet pointing towards the cell entrance, with the cord wrapped around his neck.

The witness said he and the second accused then dragged Faavae into the prison block's showers on the request of the first accused, who had a weapon in one of his hands.

Shortly after arriving at the showers with Faavae the witness said he left because "I just wanted out of there".

He said Faavae didn't have any injuries to his face and he assumed one of the accused inflicted them while he was lying in the showers.

The witness said the accused whose cell Faavae was dragged from later told him "that's what happens to people that talk s**t".

Under cross-examination, the witness said he had not made any deals with police or the Crown and was giving evidence of his own accord.

The Crown alleges Faavae's killing was a gang-related attack undertaken in revenge for an assault on another prisoner.

The fourth accused is charged with being an accessory after the fact, in relation to an attempt to retrieve a mobile phone that had been in a television set taken from his cell.

The Justices of the Peace committed the accused men to trial and they will reappear at a callover early next year.

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