Magistrate lets wife slasher leave Tonga after guilty plea; lawyer cites mental health issues

    The US-Tongan citizen who was charged with slashing his wife’s body with a knife in Tonga last month has been given a suspended sentence.

    He was allowed to leave the country with his parents.

    Tonga Mohenoa Angilau pleaded guilty to causing domestic violence and actual bodily harm.

    His lawyer, Siosifa Tu’utafaiva, told the court they would not counter the prosecution’s claim and asked that the hearing continue immediately.

    The court heard that Angilau struck his wife Chanel’s face and head before slashing her body with a knife after she told him she had had relations with six other men.

    The court was also told Angilau had been treated for a mental illness while in Tonga.

    Magistrate Salesi Mafi suspended Angilau’s sentence for two years, saying that if he breached it he would be given a more severe punishment.

    The court heard that the couple came to Tonga to join the Liahona-Saineha High School Alumni celebration last month.

    They rented a house at Fangaloto near the Friendly Islander Hotel in Ma’ofanga.

    On Monday, July 20, Angilau suspected his wife was having an affair with another man.

    The court was told that while he was sleeping on Monday night he thought his wife was  talking in her sleep and that she called another man’s name.

    When they woke up Angilau confronted Channel and repeatedly asked her about the man she called his name while she was sleeping.

    Chanel eventually confessed and told Angilau she had an affair with his brother who was leaving in the US, the court was told.

    Angilau started bashing Chanel, but she told him she had also had affairs with five other men.

    By this time Angilau was furious, the court was told, and he took the knife and started slashing her body.

    Police were called in and his wife was rushed to hospital. She received medical treatment before she was released. While she was being treated the Police launched a manhunt to find Angilau and arrested him the following day.

    Magistrate Mafi ordered that Angilau be given back his passport and said he could  leave the country for the United States immediately after the trial on July 29.

    Mafi told Angilau his suspended sentence meant he could be a free man if he spent the next two years in US. However, if he returned to Tonga during that particular time and committed a crime he would be sentenced for the crime that he has done.

    Mental illness

    Angilau’s lawyer Siosifa Tu’utafaiva told the court his client was mentally ill.

    Tu’utafaiva said Angilau was taken to Vaiola Psychiatric unit recently and was given prescriptions for pills to be gathered from another pharmacy because the government’s pharmacy did not have it.

    He said Angilau’s health improved after he took the medication.

    He said they were still awaiting a psychiatric report on Angilau.

    The wife

    Anguilau’s wife, Chanel, a Samoan, left the country before the case was heard, but made an affidavit setting out what she said had happened before she left.

    Tu’utafaiva told the court that on the day she made her affidavit he saw Angilau kneeling on the ground before her outside the court, earnestly begging her forgiveness. The court was told  his wife  kept shaking her head and walked away.

    It was also been revealed in court that Angilau once hit his brother in US because he thought he was behaving suspiciously with Chanel.

    Tu’utafaiva said it appeared his client knew what he was doing, but was ill when he committed the crime.

    The court was told it was apparent from the way Angilau begged his wife’s forgiveness that he still loved her.

    Angilau’s parents came to Tonga and the court was told they had to leave on July 28.

    Tu’utafaiva told Magistrate Mafi it was important his client returned to the United States with his parents as they were the only ones who knew him well and how to treat his condition.

    He asked Magistrate Mafi to consider the cost of delaying their flight and decide on the sentence.

    Tu’utafaiva urged Magistrate Mafi to consider the government’s economic status and allow Angilau to leave the country as his medication was very expensive.

    The prosecution was represented by Tevita Hala.

    The main points

    • The US-Tongan citizen who was charged with slashing his wife’s body with a knife in Tonga last month has been given a suspended sentence and allowed to leave the country.
    • Tonga Mohenoa Angilau pleaded guilty to causing domestic violence and actual bodily harm.
    • The court heard that Angilau struck his wife Chanel’s face and head before slashing her body with a knife after she told him she had had had relations with six other men.
    • She left Tonga before the case was heard.

    1 COMMENT

    1. Kuo tautea toloi maluʻi angalelei ‘e he fakamaauʻanga polisí ʻa e tangataʻi fonua ʻAmelika ka ko e Tonga ne ne hifi ʻaki ha hele e sino hono malí ʻi Tonga he māhina kuo ʻosí.

      Ne fakaʻatā leva ia ke foki mo ʻene mātuʻá ki ʻAmelika.

      Naʻe tali halaia pe ʻa Tonga Mohenoa Angilau ki hano fakahoko ha tā fakamamahi ʻi ʻapi mo ha fakalavea ki he sinó.

      Ne fokotuʻu atu heʻene loeá Siosifa Tūʻutafaiva ki he fakamaauʻangá ʻe ʻikai ke na toe fakafihiʻi e talatalaakí mo kole ke fakahoko muʻa e hopó ʻoua ʻe toe tatali.

      Ne fanongoa ʻe he fakamaauʻangá ne tuki ʻe Angilau e fofonga hono uaifí mo hono ʻulú ki muʻa peá ne hifiʻaki ha hele hili ia ʻene tala ange ne ʻi ai ʻene konga mo ha kau tangata ʻe toko ono.

      Ne toe fakahā foki ki he fakamaauʻangá ne puke fakaʻatamai ʻa Angilau lolotonga ʻene ʻi Tongá.

      Naʻe toloi ʻe Fakamaau Polisi Sālesi Mafi ʻa e tautea ʻo Angilaú ʻi ha taʻu ʻe ua, ʻo ne pehē ka ne ka maumauʻi ia ʻe hilifaki kiate ia ha tautea mamafa.

      Ne fanongoa foki ʻe he fakamaauʻangá ne omi ki Tonga ʻa e ongomeʻá ni ke kau atu ki he kātoanga ʻa e kau Ako Tutuku Liahona – Sainehaá he māhina kuo ʻosí.

      Ne na nofo totongi ai ʻi ha fale ʻi Fangaloto ofi ki he Hotele Friendly Islander ʻi Maʻofanga.

      ʻI he Mōnite ʻaho 20 ʻo Siulaí ne huʻuhuʻu ai ʻa Angilau ʻoku ʻi ai ha konga hono uaifí mo ha toe tangata kehe.

      Ne fakahā ki he fakamaauʻangá ne lolotonga ʻene mohe ʻi he pō Mōnité ne ne sioloto ʻoku valevale lau ʻa hono uaifí lolotonga pe ʻene mohé mo ne ui ʻe ia ha hingoa ʻo ha tangata kehe.

      ʻI heʻena ʻā haké ne maʻuʻi ʻe Angilau ʻa Chanel mo toutou fakaʻeke kau ki he tangata ne ne ui hono hingoá lolotonga ʻene mohé.

      Ne iku ʻo kofesio ʻa Chanel mo ne talanga kia Angilau ne ʻi ai ʻene konga mo hono tokoua ʻoku ʻi ʻAmeliká, ko hono fakahā ia ki he fakamaauʻangá.

      Ne kamata leva hono pohu ʻe Angilau ʻa Chanel ka ne hoko atu ʻa Chanel ʻo ne toe fakahā ange ne ʻi ai mo e toko nima tangata kehe ne nau nonofo ʻi ʻAmelika.

      ʻI he taimi ko ʻení kuo tafu e ʻita ʻa Angilaú, ko hono fakahā ia ki he fakamaauʻangá, peá ne toʻo mai ai e helé ʻo hele ʻaki e sino hono uaifí.

      Ne fetuʻutaki ʻo haʻu e kau polisí pea leleakiʻi ai hono uaifí ki falemahaki. Ne fai hono faitoʻo ki muʻa pea tuku ange kae ʻi he taimi tatau ne fakahoko ʻe he kau polisí hano kumi ʻo Angilau ʻo toki puke he ʻaho hono hokó.

      Ne tuʻutuʻuni ʻa Fakamaau Polisi Mafi ke fakafoki ange e paasipooti ʻa Angilaú mo ne pehē ʻe lava ke foki leva ia ki ʻAmelika ha hili pe ʻa e hopó he ʻaho 29 ʻo Siulaí.

      Ne fakahā ʻe Mafi kia Angilau ko e toloi ko ʻeni hono tauteá ʻe lava ke hoko ai ia ko ha tangata kuo tauʻatāina kapau ʻe nofo pe ʻi ʻAmelika ʻi he taʻu ʻe ua ka hoko maí. Neongo iá, kapau ʻe toe foki mai ki Tonga ʻi he foʻi vahaʻa taimi pau ko iá peá ne toe fai ai ha hia ʻe tauteaʻi leva ia ki he hia ko ʻeni ne ne faí.

      Ne fakahā foki ʻe Tūʻutafaiva ki he fakamaauʻangá ne puke fakaʻatamai ʻene kalaiení.

      Ne pehē ʻe Tūʻutafaiva ne ʻave ʻa Angilau ki he fale ʻo e kau puke fakaʻatamai ʻi Vaiolá ki muí ni mai peá ne ʻoange ʻene tohi ke maʻu ʻaki haʻane faitoʻo mei ha fale talavai kehe ia he ne ʻikai maʻu e faitoʻó he faamasī ʻa e puleʻangá ʻi Vaiolá.

      Ne pehē ʻe Tūʻutafaiva ne ʻasi e fakalaka he moʻui ʻa Angilaú hili ʻene maʻu e faitoʻó. Ne ne pehē ʻoku nau kei fakatatali ki ha līpooti e tuʻunga ne ʻi ai ʻa Angilaú mei Vaiola.

      Ko e uaifi ʻo Angilaú ko e Haʻamoa peá ne ne ʻosi fuakva ʻi he fakamaauʻangá ki he meʻa ne hokó kae foki ia ki ʻAmelika.

      Ne fakahā ʻe Tūʻutafaiva ki he fakamaauʻangá ne ne sio kia Angilau ʻi he ʻaho ne fuakva ai ʻa Chanel ʻene tō tuʻulutui ʻi tuʻa he fakamaauʻangá ʻo tangitautoʻe ke ne fakamolemoleʻi ia ka ne kalokalo pe ʻa Chanel mo ne fononga atu ke foki ia.

      Ne toe fakaʻasi hake foki he fakamaauʻangá hano tukiʻi ʻe Angilau hono tokoua ʻi ʻAmelika ko ʻene mahamahalo kehe ki ai mo Chanel.

      Ne pehē ʻe Tūʻutafaiva ʻoku ʻilo pe ʻe heʻene kalaiení ʻana ʻene meʻa ʻoku fai ka ne puke ia he taimi ne ne fakahoko ai e hiá ni.

      Ne fakahā foki ki he fakamaauʻangá ne mahino mei he kolea ʻe Angilau ʻa hono uaifí ke fakamolemoleʻi iá ʻoku ne kei ʻofa pe ai.

      Ne ʻi Tonga foki e ongo mātuʻa ʻa Angilau peá ne fakahā ki he fakamaauʻangá ne pau ke na foki he ʻaho 28.

      Ne kole ʻe Tūʻutafaiva ki he fakamāú ke fakaukau muʻa ʻa e fakamole ki hano toe toloi hona seá pea ke hoko atu muʻa ke fakahoko ā haʻane tuʻutuʻuni ki he hopó.

      Ne toe fakalotoʻi foki ʻe Tūʻutafaiva ʻa Fakamaau Polisi Mafi ke ne fakakaukauʻi muʻa ʻa e tuʻunga fakaʻekonōmika ʻo e puleʻangá peá ke ne fakaʻatā ʻa Angilau ke mavahe mei Tonga he ʻoku fuʻu mamafa ʻa ʻene faitoʻó.

      Ne fakafofongaʻi e talatalaakí ʻe Tēvita Hala.

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