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Court throws out Chinese bribery case

Acting Associate Justice Elvis Pila Patea granted the government’s motion to dismiss the government’s case against Jin Hua Sullivan (aka Nunu) a Chinese woman, whom the government charged with one count of bribery of a public servant.


The motion was filed by Assistant Attorney General Camille Phillipe who in her dismissal motion noted the government’s main witnesses have moved off island permanently, which is why the government cannot proceed in this matter. “This has prevented the government from going forward in a successful prosecution in this matter.”


(Samoa News notes the motion does not identify who the government's main witnesses were in the case.)


Sullivan was charged together with Immigration officer Savea Polone, who’s still facing two counts of forgery and one count of public servant acceding to corruption. Assistant Attorney General Phillipe, who’s prosecuting this matter told Samoa News the government is proceeding with the Jury Trial in the case of Immigration Officer Polone, scheduled for January 2014.


According to the government’s case against Sullivan, in August 2011 an investigator with the AG’s office was assigned by the Attorney General to investigate the issuance of fraudulent immigration ID cards (Alien Registration Receipt cards). According to the government’s case, a search through the immigration computer databases revealed that two Chinese citizens, Huiying Guo and Meinu Nie had been issued Alien Registration Numbers (AR numbers) that were already issued to other foreigners.


The two Chinese females on September 11, 2011 departed the territory to Samoa and returned the same day and the data showed a Liumanu Seuma’ala was the sponsor for the Chinese females. Court filings state the investigating officer spoke to the sponsor who claimed she was doing a favor for a Chinese female — Jin Hua Sullivan — who is a tenant of hers.


Court filings say the sponsor claimed she had no idea how the two Chinese females got ID cards so fast and said all she did was obtain entry permits, which she gave to Sullivan.


It’s alleged the sponsor heard the Chinese females were leaving on September 14, 2011 and asked a supervisor for the Immigration Airport Section to seize their ID cards. She admitted she now had the ID cards and turned them over to the investigation team.


Court filings state it was in May 2011 that the sponsor filled out the applications for the entry permits for the two Chinese women. 


According to the government’s case when Sullivan was questioned, she said she rented a building from Seuma’ala. She said that Yanxiong Li asked her to ask her landlord for help in applying for some entry permits for his friends and she sought Seumaala’s assistance.


Sullivan said Li gave her copies of the passports for the two Chinese women, itineraries and $80 for the two permits, which she then gave to Seuma’ala. Court filings say Sullivan received the permits from Seuma’ala and she gave them to her friend Li. 


According to the government’s case Sullivan denied bringing the Chinese women to the Immigration office to have their photos taken for their ID cards and said she didn’t offer money to Polone and does not know him.


Court filings say that Polone was summoned to the interviewing area and had him look at Sullivan, where he identified her as the lady who brought the Chinese women to the immigration office for ID cards and who gave him $200 for the cards.


The investigator also spoke with Sullivan’s friend. Li said his friend in China asked him to secure permits for two Chinese females to come to the territory so he asked Sullivan to help with the permits.


Li said it was Sullivan who sought help from Seuma’ala so he (Li) provided copies of the passport for the Chinese women and itineraries to Seuma’ala.


Court filings state that Li said he didn’t know how the Chinese women got their ID cards.