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Two men charged in High Court ask for trial dates

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Pago Pago, AMERICAN SAMOA — The 56-year-old man accused of unlawful possession of marijuana is asking the court to set his case for trial.

Stuart Hudson, who has been in custody since he was arrested last October, appeared in court yesterday morning for a pretrial conference. Assistant Public Defender Rob McNeill appeared on Hudson's behalf while Assistant Attorney General Laura Garvey prosecuted.

When asked by Chief Justice Michael Kruse about the status of the case, McNeill told the court that his client wants to go to trial. He said that after reviewing all the facts of the case, including the offer that was presented to them by the government, they were unable to reach an agreement.

The government alleges that a small baggie containing green marijuana leaves was found inside Hudson’s pants when he was searched by police in front of the Tafuna substation last year.


A young man accused of stealing a vehicle and several items from an Asian-owned store in Tafuna is asking the court for a trial date.

Alesana Sefo appeared in High Court yesterday.

His attorney, Assistant Public Defender Rob McNeill, informed the court that they have received all the evidence, including police reports from the government, along with an offer.

McNeill indicated that the offer was discussed with his client, and they have been unable to reach an agreement; therefore, they are asking to set the case for trial.

Sefo, who is charged with first degree burglary and stealing, is remanded back to custody, unable to post a $10,000 bond.



The District Court was informed last Friday, Feb. 22 that the government is not going to pursue felony charges against Pete Tanielu and Shawn Tuaoi.

The pair is each being charged with public peace disturbance and third degree assault.

During court proceedings, Judge Elvis P. Patea ordered a continuance for a pretrial conference for the two men for March 13, to give attorneys from both sides time to investigate the matter further.

Tanielu and Tuaoi are out on $1,000 bond each.


A woman who made her initial appearance in District Court last Friday on an order to show cause has denied the allegations against her.

Malia Sunia is out on $1,000 bond.

The order to show cause is for a previous case from 2017, for which she was placed on probation.

Her next court appearance is set for March 20.

In her new case, filed last month, Sunia is charged with private peace disturbance and second degree assault for allegedly assaulting her niece by hitting her with a cell phone and kicking her in the face while she was intoxicated.


Three defendants — each charged with public peace disturbance for an alleged incident that occurred at a west side sewing shop — made their initial appearances in District Court yesterday morning.

Wayne Gasolo, Taiana Vaueli, and Siiloto Tali a.k.a. Nia Tilo a.k.a. Jane Tali, were all ordered to stay away from Janice Sewing Shop.

Judge Elvis P. Patea has set bail for Gasolo at $1,000 (must be cash) while Vaueli and Tali have been released on their own recognizance.

Gasolo is not a stranger to the court system. When he was picked up, he was serving probation for a previous High Court matter.

Last year, he was one of two inmates that tested positive for meth. The year before that, in 2017, he pled guilty to drug possession following his arrest at an abandoned house where he is believed to have drug-fed young girls and engaged them in sexual activities. For that case, he was sentenced to 5 years probation, under the condition that he serve 20 months at TCF.

Pretrial conference for the trio is set for March 28.