Process NRL player told about church mites



‘He has a knife,’ someone shouted during a brawl outside a Sydney Mormon church before a man was stabbed in the back, a jury has heard.

During the trial of Manly hooker Manase Fainu on Wednesday, Lesila Masiasomua described the moment Faamanu Levi was stabbed in the back late at night in Wattle Grove on October 25, 2019.

“Oh, he’s got a knife, he’s got a knife,” she overheard a man say during the fight.

Fainu, 24, is charged with injuring Mr. Levi with intent to inflict grievous bodily harm. He is on trial in Parramatta court after pleading innocent.

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After Mr. Levi was stabbed from behind, he was rushed to hospital with internal bleeding and a collapsed lung.

The incident took place during a charity event hosted by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. After a volunteer guard led Fainu and his friends off the dance floor and out, they reportedly later returned to the parking lot to start the brawl.

In the parking lot, the group approached Ms. Masiasomua and her friends and asked Charlie Toilalo who was among them if he wanted to argue.

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“Would you like to try it now?” said one of the men.

“Not here, because we are in the church grounds,” Mr. Toilalo replied.

The group then started throwing punches, the jury heard.

Ms Masiasomua said she did not see who ultimately stabbed Mr Levi.

She also admitted that she couldn’t recognize anyone in the group who started out of the fight, except that they appeared to be Tongans, but noticed a “big guy” with a beard and another man wearing a dark blue sling.

Another witness, Tony Quach, previously told the court that he had tied Fainu to the crime because of the sling. Fainu had previously undergone shoulder surgery and had his arm in a sling that night, the jury heard.

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Defense attorney Margaret Cunneen SC suggested that Ms. Masiasomua had not actually seen the pendulum, but had heard about it from others who asked her directly or wrote about it on social media.

Speaking to police the night of the incident, Ms Masiasomua did not mention the pendulum at all, the jury heard.

The trial for Judge Nanette Williams continues.