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Traffic stop lands two men in jail — both have active warrants in their names

American Samoa District Court building

Pago Pago, AMERICAN SAMOA — The passenger of a vehicle that was pulled over last week for a traffic violation is now charged with drug possession. The driver was also arrested per an active arrest warrant from the DPS Vice and Narcotics Unit for a Sept. 2009 matter whereby drugs were found in his possession.

The passenger, Tavita Niusulu, and the driver, Marsh Uele, made their initial appearances before Judge Elvis P. Patea on Monday. Niusulu is charged with one count of unlawful possession of methamphetamine, a felony, while Uele is charged with one count of unlawful possession of marijuana, also a felony.

Bail for both men is set at $5,000 each, and the preliminary examination is Friday, Jan. 17th.


On Jan. 11th, cops found drugs on a passenger of a vehicle that was stopped for a traffic violation. It was later discovered that both the driver and the passenger had active warrants for their arrest. The case was ultimately transferred to the DPS Vice and Narcotics Unit.

According to the traffic officers, a gray truck heading west, in the Bay area, was swerving sideways, so the vehicle was pulled over in front of an Asian store in Pago. When police approached the vehicle, two males were inside: Marsh Uele and Tanielu Niusulu.

Uele did not produce a driver’s license when asked for one; but police were aware of an active arrest in his name, for a Sept. 2009 incident during which drugs were allegedly found on him. Police were also aware of a bench warrant for Niusulu.

Both men were taken in for questioning. Prior to that, a pat down netted a clear glass pipe (commonly used to smoke meth) in Niusulu’s left pocket. The glass pipe contained a useable amount of a white crystalline substance.

Niusulu refused to make a statement.


During a pat down of Uele following a traffic stop last September, police found a small baggie containing a green leafy substance, which later tested positive for marijuana.