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Driver of speeding vehicle has a really, really bad day — charged with meth and pot possession — plus he's an overstayer

American Samoa District Court building

Pago Pago, AMERICAN SAMOA — A man who was stopped for speeding, found not to have a driver’s license, and when apprehended, allegedly punched and kicked a police officer while resisting arrest, had further bad luck when the vehicle he was driving was searched at the police station, and illegal drugs were allegedly discovered. To top it off, in court, the driver was found to be an overstayer from Samoa.

Alofa Filipo made his initial appearance before District Court Judge Elvis P. Patea on Monday. Prosecuting the case is Assistant  Attorney General Christy Dunn, while Assistant Public Defender, Bob Stuart is representing the defendant.

Filipo is charged with one count of unlawful possession of methamphetamine; and one count of unlawful possession of marijuana — both felonies. Due to Filipo’s illegal immigration status and the seriousness of the allegations against him, Patea ordered that he remain in custody without bail.

Preliminary examination (PX) is set for Tuesday, Dec. 3rd.


The government claims that in the early morning of Nov. 21, 2019, two officers who were patrolling the Tafuna area pulled over a vehicle heading east for speeding.

Officers observed the vehicle swerving and overtaking vehicles as it took a wide turn into the Fogagogo road.

Cops stopped the vehicle in front of Fetu’s store and the driver, later identified as Filipo, did not have a driver’s license or any kind of identification.

After finding out that there was no record of a driver’s license for a Alofa Filipo, officers informed the suspect that, he was about to be apprehended.

It was then that Filipo told officers that he was in a hurry and had to rush home because his uncle needed to use the car to go to work. Officers told the suspect that he needed to calm down while they do their job; however, the suspect kept telling them that he needed to go home.

When cops were trying to apprehend the suspect, he resisted and started a scuffle. Officers tried to pull the suspect out of the vehicle, but the suspect allegedly punched one of the officers in the eye;  and then tried to close the door while cops were still trying to pull him out.

While one of the officers was holding on to one of the suspect’s arms, he slipped and lost balance, and that’s when the suspect kicked him. The suspect kicked again and hit the officer’s left eye.

The scuffle continued but cops were able to handcuff Filpo and transport him to the Tafuna Substation. The suspect’s vehicle was impounded. During inventory of the vehicle, police found a small pouch attached to the keychain.

When asked what was inside the black pouch, the suspect shook his head and said, “nothing, it’s just a black pouch.”

Officers asked the suspect for consent to open the pouch and the suspect agreed saying, “go ahead and open it, there’s nothing inside. What are you looking for?”

Upon unzipping the pouch, cops discovered a small stamp sized baggie with a white crystalline substance inside.

A more thorough search of the vehicle netted a black backpack behind the driver’s seat. The backpack was see-through and officers saw a small glass pipe commonly used to smoke meth.

When asked about the backpack, the suspect said he didn’t know anything about the backpack, or who owns it. In the backpack, however, police found another small glass pipe containing a white crystalline substance; a clear plastic ziplock bag containing a green leafy substance consistent with marijuana, and several other small stamp sized baggies.

The suspect refused to make a statement to police, saying his head was hurting from the scuffle and he did not want to talk.

The white crystalline substance tested positive for meth while the green leafy substance tested positive for marijuana.