Court Report


A man charged by the government on allegations that he threatened his daughter with a knife and then at gunpoint will be sentenced on July 27 after he entered a guilty plea before the High Court last week.  

Samoa News is withholding the name of the defendant to protect the identity of the victim.

The father was initially charged with unlawful use of a weapon, third degree assault, unlawful possession of a firearm, and private peace disturbance, however he entered into a plea agreement with the government.

The defendant pled guilty to assault and possession of an unlicensed firearm and  private peace disturbance while the government moved to dismiss the remaining charges.

Chief Justice Michael Kruse last Friday, accepted the plea agreement and dismissed the remaining charges.

 According to the government’s case the father was upset at his daughter when someone called his cell phone. A confrontation with his daughter about the call accelerated into the defendant threatening his daughter with a knife, telling her to leave the house, and when the daughter refused to leave, it’s alleged the defendant then fetched a rifle and pointed it at  his daughter, telling her to leave. 

    According to police the father threatened to kill his daughter while he held the gun to her face. The defendant told police that he was only trying to scare his daughter.

   Police confiscated the rifle and the knife that were alleged to have been used during the incident.

The defendant is represented by Assistant Public Defender Leslie Cardin while prosecuting was Assistant Attorney General Cecilia Reyna.


District Court Judge John Ward has rescheduled another status hearing on the government’s case against Lorraine “Lola” Reid accused of misappropriating funds belonging to the American Samoa Sailing Association (ASSA) without proper authorization.

Reid is charged with embezzlement and stealing, which are both felony charges.

The request came from the prosecutor, Assistant Attorney General Cable Poag who has received a check from the defendant, returning the money to ASSA.

Poag in the last hearing moved for the court to dismiss the criminal charges noting the defendant had already written a check returning the money.

Poag noted last Friday the check is in the government’s possession, however the check has yet to be handed over to the ASSA and until the check is cleared by the bank, the government will not proceed with the dismissal motion.

Reid is out on bail of $5,000 and is represented by Assistant Public Defender Karen Shelley.

The embezzlement charge is a class C felony and carries a jail term of up to seven years, a fine of $5,000, a fine equal to twice the amount of gain from the commission of said crime up to a maximum of $20,000, or both fine and imprisonment.

The stealing count is a class C felony punishable for up to seven years in jail, a fine of up to $5,000, a fine equal to twice the amount of gain from the commission of the said crime up to a maximum of $20,000, or both the fine and imprisonment.

According to the government’s case, on February 3, 2011 James McGuire filed a complaint with the Department of Public Safety regarding the ASSA Bank of Hawaii account, which was allegedly used by Reid for personal use.

Court documents say that Reid was the primary signer on the subsidiary corporation for the ASSA bank account, and that she abused her fiduciary responsibility and signed a number of ASSA Junior Sailing fund checks made out in her name, and cashed them.

According to the government’s case, Reid made a written statement to the police saying that she was took funds in the form of six checks — made out to her — out of the ASSA Junior Sailing fund “to keep the kid’s money safe from McGuire,” and admitting to cashing the checks from August 12, 2010 to November 15, 2010, payable to herself and endorsed by herself without a second signature.


Standard review for drug defendant Fred Fatuesi of his probation was held last Friday before Chief Justice Michael Kruse.

Former police officer, Fatuesi was placed on a five year probation following a police raid of his vehicle and home in Pago Pago where drugs were found in 2009.

Police confiscated five plastic baggies of methamphetamine or “ice” from Fatuesi’s vehicle three years ago.

He pled guilty to unlawful possession of crystal methamphetamine.

In 2009, the Chief Justice sentenced Fatuesi to five years, which was suspended. He was placed on probation with the condition that he serve 20 months in jail.

However, the jail time was stayed under the condition that he would attend and successfully complete the Teen Challenge International drug treatment program in Hawaii.

In his last probation hearing in 2011, the court was told Fatuesi is complying with all conditions of his probation except for the $5,000 fine.

Last Friday’s hearing revealed the defendant has paid his fine in full.

Kruse rescheduled another probation review in six months, noting the defendant has fully complied with his probation.

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