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Report finds Samoan prisoners treated like animals

A report into Samoa's notorious prison has found a culture of corruption and abuse, with inmates inluding two New Zealanders, treated like animals.

Both men had mental illnesses and died in Tafai'gata Prison.

The report has labelled the prison overcrowded and that prisoners are beaten, abused and fed from buckets.

Christine Wilson, the mother of Hans Dalton is praising the commission of inquiry findings and says for her "it looks like a very welcome light for the people particularly of Samoa".

Hans Dalton was found dead in his cell on Boxing Day in 2012. He was upside down in a barrel of water after being badly beaten.

His family is suing the government for failing to care for him.

"I hope this report will say to the Samoa Government it's time we moved on. Admit what happened to this human being, he wasn't supposed to be in jail, he committed no crime."

In 2009 conditions in the prison were so bad 41 prisoners hijacked a bus hoping to drive to parliament to beg the Prime Minister for help, but things did not improve.

Prison Chief Executive Taitosaua Winterstein says "just because they are in prison they do retain some rights so they are not in there as slaves or such".

Mr Winterstein says whatever comes out of the report he will address.

But at this stage he hasn't even seen a copy of the findings which have been in Government hands since April.

Mum of mentally ill man who died in Samoan jail calls for end to corruption and abuse. Source: 1 NEWS


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