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Aliitama Sotoa refutes Samoa News court report

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Pago Pago, AMERICAN SAMOA — Aliitama Sotoa has strongly refuted a report by Samoa News, published yesterday as part of the Court Report, stating that he refused to leave the church’s premises that he’s currently occupying.

In a phone call to Samoa News, Sotoa said that there was an agreement between himself and the church and he did not wish to elaborate more about terms of the agreement.

Sotoa said that his hearing before Associate Justice Fiti Sunia on Monday morning was only about the bench warrant that was issued by the court.

“There was no such thing that the church asked me to leave the premises, so there was no such time that I refused to comply with the instruction from the church,” Sotoa said, adding that he was never arrested.

“I was picked up by the court marshal, but I was never arrested,” he explained.

In the Court Report published by Samoa News yesterday, Feb. 10th, 2021, it stated that, “Samoa News understands that the hearing between the defendant and the church stemmed from an incident where the defendant refused to leave the church house he’s occupying.”

The next hearing between Sotoa and the Methodist Church of American Samoa is scheduled for next week.