Double murder trial starts today - Solomon Star News

Double murder trial starts today
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07 August 2018
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Two members of the Chinese community last year in a protest against the killings.


THE trial into the murder of a Chinese business couple at their shop at Town Ground, west Honiara, last Easter weekend, will start on Tuesday.

The hearing of evidences on the case of Raymond Keota and Jimson Goufi was listed to start on Monday.

However, it was adjourned to commence this morning, because some documents in relation to that matter needs to be sorted out first before the trial can proceed.

The trial therefore is set to begin today, before Chief Justice Sir Albert Palmer.

The two accused are facing the double murder of the Chinese couple on 15 April last year during the Easter Weekend.

Prosecution alleged Goufi who was the couple’s security let Keota inside the shop on that evening of the alleged offending.

As soon as he entered the building, Keota allegedly pulled out a long bush knife and struck Gong Zhen Lao (husband) who was busy with business papers.

Keota then allegedly went and got hold of the same bush knife and repeatedly struck the victim which landed the victim on the floor.

Prosecution also alleged Keota attacked Lao’s wife with a kitchen knife when she came out from the kitchen to check on her husband after hearing noises. 

He allegedly wounded her throat with the kitchen knife.

When she was no longer breathing, both accused then allegedly helped themselves looting money from the shop cashier and bottle shop, packed it in a school bag before exiting the building.

The following morning Goufi and other female workers of the shop went to work and discovered the couple were dead.

Police alleged it was Goufi who climbed the fence and went into the building and upon his return informed the female workers the couple were lying dead inside the shop.

 Both accused then allegedly escaped to Malaita with large amounts of cash after the alleged killing.

Goufi first escaped from police in Malaita but then surrendered on 15 May last year while Keota was arrested on 21 May last year.

The two accused are represented by Michael Holara and George Gray of Public Solicitor’s Office.

The Director of Public Prosecutions Ronald Bei Talasasa and Public Prosecutors Margaret Suifa’asia and John Wesley Zoze are appearing for the Crown.

By ASSUMPTA BUCHANAN

 

 

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