American man accused of murdering his wife during their honeymoon in Fiji

An American man was recently arrested and charged with murdering his wife while they were honeymooning at a luxury resort in Fiji, ABC News has learned.

Fiji Police confirmed that on the afternoon of July 9, a woman identified as Christe Chen, a 36-year-old US citizen, was found motionless on the floor of her room by staff at Turtle Island, a 500-acre private resort. located in the Yasawa archipelago of Fiji. Resort management alerted authorities, who responded and pronounced Chen dead at the scene. She had been beaten to death, police told ABC News.

Chen’s husband, identified as Bradley Robert Dawson, a 38-year-old US citizen, was located and arrested two days later in Nadi, a town on the west coast of Fiji’s main island Viti Levu, according to police.

Dawson appeared in Lautoka Magistrates Court on July 13 and was charged with one count of murder. Due to the seriousness of the incident, Dawson’s case was referred to the Lautoka Superior Court, where he is scheduled to appear in court on July 27. He remains in custody at the Fiji Correctional Service facility in Lautoka, Fiji’s second largest city, some 16 miles north of Nadi.

Dawson’s attorney, Iqbal Khan, told ABC News that he intends to file a bail application on his client’s behalf on July 25, but believes it will be difficult to get bail because Dawson is an alien with no family or local connections that can give you guarantees

Fiji Police Force Prosecutor Arvind Kumar told ABC News that authorities are still preparing for the release of all details and findings related to the case, which will be sent to the Lautoka High Court ahead of the scheduled appearance of Dawson there next week.

The Turtle Island Resort is located on Nanuya Levu, an island that is part of the Yasawa Archipelago in Fiji.

Chameleon/Shutterstock, FILE

Turtle Island, which houses a maximum of 14 couples at a time in private villas, confirmed that “an incident occurred between a married couple at the resort on July 9, resulting in a tragic outcome and the filing of charges.”

“We cooperated with the authorities during the investigation and the police left the island more than a week ago,” the resort told ABC News in a statement. “It is our understanding that charges have been filed in the case. Our highest priority is the safety and concern of our guests and team, whom we value as family, and we are extremely saddened by the event. We continue to send our condolences to the family, friends and colleagues of Ms. Chen. Given the need to respect the privacy of our guests and the ongoing legal investigation, please direct all further inquiries to the authorities.”

Meanwhile, a US State Department spokesman confirmed “the death of a US citizen in Fiji.”

“Out of respect for the family’s privacy, we have no further comment at this time,” the spokesperson told ABC News in a statement.

ABC News contributor Brad Garett, a former FBI special agent, explained that when Americans travel abroad and are alleged to have committed a crime in a foreign country, “the local authorities will use their process.”

“Mr. Dawson will be in Fiji for a long time before this case is resolved, one way or another,” Garett said.

Shannon Crawford, Matthew Stone and Christine Theodorou of ABC News contributed to this report.

Leave a Comment