Alleged drug dealer in court for DUI and drug possession
Pago Pago, AMERICAN SAMOA — The driver of a blue truck that was pulled over by police during the weekend for driving under the influence of alcohol (DUI) is also being charged with unlawful possession of drugs.
Iopu Livisitone made his initial appearance in District Court this week. Prosecuting the case is Assistant Attorney General Jason Mitchell, while Assistant Public Defender Bob Stuart is representing Livisitone, who has a pending case in High Court for drug possession.
Livisitone is charged with unlawful possession of methamphetamine, a felony; and driving under the influence of alcohol, a class A misdemeanor.
Bail is set at $5,000 and the preliminary examination is next Tuesday.
Around 12:10a.m on Sept. 21st, several officers patrolling in the Tafuna area witnessed a speeding vehicle heading west bound. The vehicle was pulled over in front of Cost U Less and the driver was identified as Livisitone, who failed the field sobriety test and was immediately arrested for DUI.
Livisitone was transported to the Tafuna Substation for questioning and his vehicle was impounded. A body search netted a glass pipe (commonly used to smoke ice) containing a white crystalline substance inside his back pocket. The glass pipe bulb was cracked but police were still able to collect residue and test it. (The substance yielded positive results for meth).
Livisitone told police he was drinking with a friend in Pavaiai, where he was given the glass pipe containing meth. He said he smoked the glass pipe and then kept it on him.
Police also found in Livisitone’s possession, a bag that he said belonged to him, which contained two empty small green straws and empty stamp-sized baggies.
During his interview with police, Livisitone revealed that he has a pending case in High Court, in which he is charged with violating local drug laws.
Livisitone was arrested after armed detectives executed a search warrant on his home and vehicle in May 2017. Livisitone was subsequently charged with unlawful possession of methamphetamine with intent to distribute; unlawful possession of methamphetamine; unlawful possession of marijuana with intent to distribute; and unlawful possession of marijuana - all felonies.
According to the government, it was around October 2016 that a ‘confidential informant’ (CI) provided information to police regarding a home in Tafuna, allegedly being used to run drugs. The alleged business was led by Livisitione and another person, and was operated out of the small shack behind Livisitone’s house.
A controlled buy was carried out in January 2017 and took place inside Livisitone’s vehicle. In that case, Livisitone was released on a $25,000 surety bond and one of the conditions is that he remain law abiding. His trial is set for May 21, 2021.