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Kahui twins' aunt breaks down at inquest

Published: 6:15PM Wednesday June 29, 2011 Source: ONE News

The Kahui twins' aunt broke down as she gave evidence at an inquest into her nephews' deaths today.

Mona Kahui described the night one of her nephews stopped breathing.

She said her brother Chris, the twins' father who was acquitted of their murder in 2008, tried to perform CPR on three-month-old Cru.

Mona and her partner were living with Chris Kahui and the twins' mother Macsyna King, who is releasing a tell-all book , at the time babies Chris and Cru suffered fatal abuse.

Mona said when she picked up Cru, his eyes rolled back and his lips turned blue.

She said Chris Kahui laid Cru down on a couch and gave him CPR, then the baby started breathing again.

"I remember my brother telling my nephew that he scared him. I think the words were, 'geez my son, don't do that again'," she told the court.

The Coroner questioned why none of the four adults at home when Chris Kahui revived Cru called an ambulance.

Mona said she was on her way out to visit her sick mother, but police lawyer Simon Mount said she could have taken the twins with her to the hospital.

Mount asked Mona if Chris Kahui did not want her to take the twins to the hospital.

She said Chris Kahui asked to instead drive around looking for King, who had left the house early in the day.

Coroner Garry Evans granted Mona suppression of her image after she said her children were bullied during her brother's trial for the murder of the twins.

She said she now had a nine-year-old girl in her care and was afraid she would get the same treatment.

The country's leading expert in child abuse, Dr Patrick Kelly, yesterday put his recommendations to the coroner.

Dr Kelly said more manpower and more training may be the only way to stop babies like Chris and Cru Kahui from dying violently.

"It is one of the reasons why I think our inter-agency management of these cases is often so poor," Kelly said.

Most GPs get a total of two hours training to deal with suspected child abuse, which Dr Kelly says is not enough.

Twins 'suspiciously settled'

Yesterday, lawyer for Chris Kahui, Michele Wilkinson-Smith, asked a panel of child abuse specialists at the inquest their thoughts on what she says was an abnormal period of time where the twins were not heard crying for food.

"Healthy, hungry, screaming babies are difficult to miss in a house, aren't they? They tend make themselves heard, don't they?" Wilkinson-Smith asked.

"After the mother Macsyna left the house between 12 and 1pm, no one describes hearing baby Chris crying at all. No uncontrollable screaming.

"My question to you is that, are not these babies suspiciously settled from the time the mother leaves the house at one o'clock?"

Dr Roger Byard said he did not feel comfortable commenting, because there could have been a number of other factors.

Other evidence raised yesterday included the twins' likely reason for death. All experts at the inquest agreed the twins died violently and suggested they were most likely to have been slammed into an object.

But many questions have been raised over exactly when the babies' fatal injuries occurred.