Police in Honiara are investigating the damage caused by vandals to the Japanese War Monument at Mount Austin.

The statue was removed from its base and carried approximately 200 metres down Mount Austin Road towards the Borderline and Naha area.

As a result of its transportation, the statue suffered significant damage.

Police at Borderline were alerted to the act of vandalism by a member of the public last week and arranged for the safe retrieval of the statue.

It is believed the brass statue was removed by people seeking to sell it as scrap metal, but the item was too heavy to move any further.

Acting Assistant Commissioner Operations, Nathan Ratu, said that the damage to the monument was not acceptable and it was disappointing to see a national monument treated with such a lack of respect.

"World War II monuments are to recognise fallen soldiers. This act of vandalism is very disrespectful and unacceptable," he said.

Mr. Ratu reminded members of that it is a criminal offence and police will arrest and prosecute anyone found doing this.