Somali refuses interpreter in depositions hearing

A witness in an Auckland District Court depositions hearing of murder charges against two Somali men refused to give evidence through a woman Somali interpreter yesterday.

The witness was stood down by justices of the peace hearing police evidence against Abdirizak Ali Ismail, 48, a Mt Roskill sickness beneficiary, and Ambar Badam Yusuf, 23, a Mt Albert student, who are both charged with the murder of Tongan Elikena Inia during a street battle in McGehan Close, Owairaka, in January last year.

The witness, taxi driver Habi Sheikh Mohamed, later gave evidence through another Somali, a previous witness, who was sworn in as an interpreter.

The depositions hearing, held to determine if there is enough evidence to put the two defendants on trial, had resumed after adjourning in April.

Under questioning from Aaron Perkins, for the Crown, Mr Mohamed said he was driving Yusuf home from their mosque when he drove over a ball. Outside Yusuf’s house he was punched by someone who asked him why he had run over the ball.

Mr Mohamed said that after another visit to the mosque he went back to Yusuf’s and was told Ismail had been assaulted by a group of men.

Somali refuses interpreter in depositions hearing

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