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Former teacher admits having sex with student

reporters@samoanews.com

A former 26 year-old teacher has admitted in court he had sexual intercourse with his 13 year old student leading to the young girl giving birth.

Tone Pulou’s admission came after he entered into a plea agreement with the government. The former teacher pled guilty to a charge of rape while the government moved to dismiss charges of sexual abuse in the first degree and endangering the welfare of a child.

According to the plea agreement, by the defendant’s guilty plea he admits he had sexual intercourse with his student, between September 2009 and February 2010. The plea deal says the defendant’s conduct was without legal justification or excuse.

The rape charge carries the maximum jail term of five years to 20 years in jail. Pulou appeared before the High Court Thursday morning. Associate Justice Lyle L Richmond accepted the plea deal and dismissed the remaining counts against the defendant. Richmond scheduled sentencing for the defendant for May 10, 2012.

Richmond reminded the former teacher that during sentencing, both sides are free to make their own recommendations which are not binding by the court which has the sole responsibility for determining the appropriate sentence within the limit of the law. The Associate Justice told the defendant the court may impose a different sentencing than that which is recommend by both parties and he will be allowed to withdraw his guilty plea. The defendant assured the court he is aware of this.

According to the government’s case, the female student told police she had sexual intercourse with her teacher starting around September 2009 and ending February 2010. The matter came to light when the female student and her mother went to the OBGYN at LBJ Medical Center, to find out she was pregnant and then Child Protective Services with the Department of Human Social Services was contacted.

Pulou fled the territory to Australia last year when the government moved to file criminal charges. In October 2011 when Pulou visited relatives in Hawai’i, he was arrested by the Federal Bureau Investigation agents, based on a warrant issued by the local District Court.



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