Retired postal employee fined in criminal case
Chief Justice Michael Kruse sentenced retired Post Office employee Nikolao Faasala, to one year in prison and fined him $1,000, however the sentence has been suspended and he’s placed on probation for a period of two years.
Fa’asala was facing charges of embezzlement, stealing and responsibility for the conduct of another to commit forgery which are all felonies, however he pled guilty to misdemeanor stealing, which was amended from felony stealing, while the remaining charges were dismissed as part of the government’s plea agreement.
Court filings say that the defendant stole money and postage stamps from the Post office from January to September 2009 in the amount of of $2,977.06, which he paid back.
The defendant is represented by Mark Ude while prosecuting is Assistant Attorney General Camille Philippe.
During sentencing earlier this week, Fa’asala who’s now serving as a pastor, said he’s learned his actions aren't a good example for federal employees. He also noted this has reached the United States via the media.
Mark Ude representing the defendant informed the court that Fa’asala is remorseful of his actions and it’s taught him a huge lesson. Ude then stated that it's clear that Fa’asala did what he did for other people who needed help, he did not benefit from this incident. Kruse pointed out to Fa’asala that helping others should be done with your own property — not government property.
According to the government’s case the investigation was first conducted by the Federal government and later referred to the Attorney General’s office for local prosecution. In the report that was handed to the AG’s office, it is alleged that the defendant stole money and postage stamps from the Post office from January to September 2009.
On Sept. 11, 2009 Special Agent Kevin Shimoda with the Office of the Inspector General initiated the investigation and a “Letter of Demand for Indebtedness for Employee Accountable Credit Shortage”.
This letter notified the defendant the Postal Service was intent on collecting $2,977.06 and the Postal Service has already received the payment in the amount of $2,9977.06 from the defendant.
Chief Justice Michael Kruse accepted the plea agreement and scheduled sentencing for Fa’asala on November 21, 2013.
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