A man who remained in prison for more than three years after his original sentence has this week pleaded not guilty to a charge of grievous bodily harm against a fellow prisoner during the mass prison break in March this year.
Sio Agafili filed his plea of not guilty through his lawyer, Afa Lesa.
Justice Mata Tuatagaloa then postponed Agafili’s matter to the week commencing 14 June, 2021 for a half-day hearing.
When Agafili appeared before Justice Leiataualesa Daryl Clarke on the 2nd of July 2020, it was only then discovered that his prison term should have ended on the 6th of November 2016. Justice Clarke then ordered his immediate release from Tanumalala prison.
According to Prosecutor Magele Leona Su’a at the time, Sio or Galu Agafili was convicted and sentenced on the 19th of December 2008 for burglary and theft.
It is uncertain why Agafili remained in prison years after his term was supposed to end, however, he now faces more recent charges of grevious bodily harm in relation to the prison break where over 30 inmates attacked prison guards and escaped from Tanumalala.
Counsel for Agafili could not confirm if legal action would be taken against the government for the extended detention period.