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Man violates probation condition that he not set foot in the area called “Le Filifili”

American Samoa High Court building

Pago Pago, AMERICAN SAMOA — The High Court last week ordered a man, who was convicted of violating one of the conditions of his probation, that he not set foot in the area called, “Le Filifili” to find a job or end up back in jail.

“Mr. Mose, this will be your last chance, so seek gainful employment or you will go to jail for 5 years,” the court told the defendant during his Disposition hearing after being convicted of violating conditions of his probation.

According to the court, Taulagi Mose tested positive for methamphetamine (meth) while he was being held at the Territorial Correctional Facility (TCF), awaiting his hearing.

Mose was on probation after being convicted of unlawful possession of meth.

When Mose’s case was called, defense attorney asked the court to adopt the recommendation by the Probation Office, not to revoke his client’s probation but order him to be released from TCF so that he can seek and secure gainful employment.

The prosecutor echoed the defendant’s defense attorney’s statement and asked the court to adopt the Probation Office’s recommendation.

Before delivering its decision, the court explained to Mose how serious his crime was when police arrested him with another male individual in November of 2020 in the area called, “Le Filifili”, a.k.a “Logotala”. (The area is allegedly known as the ‘buy’ place for illegal drugs.)

According to the court, several police officers were looking for a man accused of kidnapping a woman when they met up with two male individuals standing on the side of the road going up to the Logotala hill. The two individuals were Mose and Laulala Lilomaiava

Police arrested Mose and Lilomaiava after illegal drugs were discovered in their possession during a body search.

Mose was initially charged with unlawful possession of meth; and unlawful possession of meth with the intent to distribute. But under a plea agreement with the government, which was accepted by the court, he pled guilty to a lesser, amended charge.

In the current case, after reviewing the report by Probation, the court modified Mose’s probation and ordered that he be released from TCF, and was given 90 days to seek and secure gainful employment. If the defendant does not secure gainful employment inside 90 days, he will spend time in jail.

The court made it clear to the defendant that gainful employment does not include a family farm. The court further instructed the defendant to not go back to his old life where he used to sell drugs in the area called, “Le Filifili”. He was again ordered to stay away from that area and not set foot on the land.