A second man has appeared in court charged with murdering Oxford farmer Sameera Chandrasena.

Sri Lankan-born Vivaj Alahakoon, 33, is jointly charged with a fellow countryman of murdering Mr Chandrasena on February 23.

Alahakoon, described as being a jeweller who lives in St Albans in Christchurch, was remanded without plea until March 13 after a brief appearance at Christchurch District Court today (Wed).

His co-accused, Thuvan Prawesh Sawal, 23, appeared in court yesterday and was remanded until the same date.


The court was told Alahakoon would need a Singhalese interpreter for his next court court appearance.

Both men are also charged with arson, after the body of cricket-loving Mr Chandresena was found inside the fire-ravaged house last Thursday.

A post mortem examination found he had died as a result of assault injuries before the fire started.

Police then launched a homicide investigation, and first held the two men on other unrelated charges.

The scene examination at the Oxford property is ongoing, and police are asking for sightings of a white Mitsubishi Chariot 7-seater vehicle, which may have been between Oxford and Christchurch early on February 23.