SAKIUSA Rabaka had begged the soldiers to stop beating him, the Lautoka High Court heard yesterday.
Witness Josua Saunaqali said soldiers ignored Rabaka's pleas and instead responded, "You are lying. Take it like a man."
Sakiusa's death in January 2007 while in the custody of soldiers led to the arrest of eight soldiers and a police officer, whose re-trial started in the Lautoka court after High Court judge Justice Daniel Goundar stopped their first trial the previous week.
Speaking through an interpreter, Mr Saunaqali said at one point when they were made to crawl on their stomach with the weight of a timber across their shoulders, 19-year-old Sakiusa gave up and rolled over on his back.
He said Sakiusa was immediately hit across the stomach with a piece of timber and was motionless for a while.
He identified Taione Lua as the soldier who assaulted the pair while they were crawling.
Mr Saunaqali said he was taken to Black Rock, a military training site in Nadi, twice on January 28.
He said during the day he was taken about 3pm, stripped to his underwear and assaulted while forced to run with a bag of sand and walk like a duck and crawl with the weight of a timber across his shoulders on the gravelled road. He was kicked, punched and sworn at the entire time, he told the court.
Later that evening, Mr Saunaqali was picked again along with Sakiusa and a friend while they were on their way to buy marijuana.
He said they were taken again to Black Rock where they were subjected to the same exercise and treatment.
Mr Saunaqali identified Patrick Nayacalagilagi and Jona Nareki as the main players in the night assault.
He said throughout the incident they had cried out several times for the beating to stop because they were injured.
The court was told the three were later bundled into a vehicle and driven to the Namaka Police Station where more soldiers and police officers were drinking yaqona outside a bure. They were told to wait inside to give their statement to police.
By then, Mr Saunaqali said, Sakiusa was vomiting. He said they were told to sleep and were woken at 5am the next day when Nayacalagilagi brought them a statement but tore it up, saying the officers were protected by the amnesty issued by the interim Government.
He said Nayacalagilagi then threatened that he would come for them in their home if they told anybody what happened.
The case continues today before Justice Goundar.