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Lawyer to lodge complaint

Felix Chaudhary
Saturday, February 24, 2018

A LAUTOKA human rights lawyer representing nine youths who were allegedly tortured by police in Tavua last month, says he will formally lodge a complaint with the Fiji Police Force next week.

Aman Ravindra-Singh said he was in the process of collating statements from the alleged torture victims.

"Even though they have come forward, they are still very scared because after the alleged torture happened, they were threatened and warned in very harsh terms that if they would speak to anyone about what had happened, worse things would be done to them," he claimed.

"Getting them to open up about the brutal and inhumane manner in which they were treated has not been easy," he claimed.

"And then there has been the logistical issue because I am in Lautoka and they are in Waikubukubu, which is a fair distance away."

Mr Ravindra-Singh said he had completed seven of nine interviews and hoped to complete taking statements by tomorrow.

It has been alleged that on January 26, nine youths were rounded up by officers from a community police post.

Seven were taken to the police post where they were allegedly questioned about their involvement in the cultivation of marijuana.

The alleged torture victims were interviewed by this newspaper.

They all claimed they were beaten with batons, pieces of timber, sugarcane stalks and kicked and punched on the head and torso.

One of the victims claimed he was sexually assaulted after a policeman tried to insert a baton into him.

The two others who were allegedly taken by police to remote areas claim they were stripped naked and beaten until they were unable to walk.

Acting Deputy Commissioner of Police Itendra Nair said investigations into the claims made by the Waikubukbu youths had already begun.

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