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Police to help murder investigation in Solomons

14 March 2005
Media statement

Police to help murder investigation in Solomons

Three additional New Zealand Police are to travel to the Solomon Islands to assist investigations into the murder of Australian officer Adam Dunning in December, Foreign Minister Phil Goff and Acting Police Minister Paul Swain said today.

Mr Dunning was a member of the RAMSI Participating Police Force (PPF). He died after shots were fired at his vehicle while on a night patrol on December 22.

"New Zealand currently has 35 police in the Solomons on a two-year deployment as part of the PPF. The additional three investigators will be deployed for three months," the Ministers said.

"The investigation into Mr Dunning's murder has placed additional pressure on existing Police resources in the Solomons. An investigation is also continuing into the attempted murder of two PPF officers last October. Four men are in custody facing charges relating to both attacks.

"One of the difficulties currently faced by the PPF is a shortage of experienced investigators to work on the very large number of lines of enquiry that need to be completed. The extra three officers being sent to the Solomons, along with extra Australian police officers, will help address that issue.

"The Dunning homicide investigation is a priority. The investigation needs to be completed and any further arrests made to reduce the on-going risk that may exist as long as others who may have orchestrated the attacks remain in the community," the ministers said.

ENDS

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