Three more Tongan police officers, including a senior inspector, have been charged with the manslaughter of New Zealand police officer Kali Fungavaka.

A man who was being held in custody and two constables are already facing manslaughter charges over Mr Fungavaka's death in a police cell after he was arrested in Tonga on August 17.

Two other constables and an inspector were to appear in Nuku'alofa Magistrate's Court this afternoon on the same charges, Matangi Tonga Online reported.

Tongan Police Commissioner Grant O'Fee said all five police officers had been suspended.


The charged inspector was a supervising officer working on the night that Mr Fungavaka was fatally injured while in police custody, Mr O'Fee said.

He said the new arrests were a result of more evidence from people inside and outside the police service.

"We interviewed them and all evidence was evaluated by us and the Solicitor General's office and it was determined this was the appropriate charge to be made," Mr O'Fee said.

An Australian Federal Police investigator is expected to arrive in Tonga on October 18.