Court Report

Translated by Samoa News staff

YUSEFF CARTER

The government’s case against a man who is accused of receiving methamphetamine via the US Postal Service had his case bound over to the High Court, where the defendant entered, through his defense attorney, a not guilty plea last Thursday.

Yuseff Carter was charged two weeks ago with one count of unlawful possession of methamphetamine. The government alleges the defendant received the methamphetamine, which “ weighed 1.2 ounces” — in a package the defendant received in the mailbox registered to his name.

Last week Wednesday, the defendant appeared in District Court for his preliminary examination hearing where police Det. John Seumanutafa, who is in charge of the investigation of the case, was the sole government witness providing evidence in the government’s case.

He said on the package was written to the name “Malulu”.

Despite the defense’s arguments there was no proof the package belonged to Carter, District Court Judge Fiti A. Sunia found probable cause to support the charge and bound the case to High Court, where the defendant’s next hearing is later next month. Carter has been released from custody after posting a $5,000 bond.

According to court documents, Carter allegedly told police he picked up a yellow slip from the post office box on Oct. 12 but he didn’t pick up the package that day because it was too late. Carter told police he was expecting a package from his father in San Diego, California, and he thought it had just arrived.

He told police the package he was expecting from his father was from the online company, “Amazon”.

The defendant was then informed the package he received was packaged in an Amazon box to which the defendant stated he was “expecting something from Amazon but not this kind of package,” court documents state.

The defendant “also stated after the methamphetamine was discovered, [that] he looked at the package and did not recognize the names on the package but confirmed that the P.O. box number was his,” the government alleges in its case.

ANOTHER HUSBAND ACCUSED OF ASSAULTING WIFE

Early last week a 41-year old man made his initial appearance in District Court charged with two misdemeanor counts of third degree assault and private peace disturbance after he allegedly assaulted his wife.

Court information states the defendant had consumed alcohol at the time he is alleged to have assaulted his wife last week Monday. It also says that the husband arrived home late afternoon last week Monday and noticed some family issues that were not taken care of by his wife.

Thereafter the defendant allegedly started yelling at his wife that resulted in a heated argument between the couple. The husband then allegedly hit the wife in the face, pulled her hair and pushed her towards the floor of the couple’s home.

The wife’s loud screams for help prompted neighbors to call police for help. The defendant was taken into custody and appeared last Tuesday in District Court.

While the defendant is released on his own recognizance, the court has ordered that the defendant find another place to stay while his case is before the court. He was also ordered not to make direct or indirect contact with his wife without the court’s permission.

Samoa News does not identify the defendant in domestic cases to protect the victim.

POLU MAUGA

The District Court late last week sentenced Polu Mauga to 12 months probation after he pled guilty to misdemeanor stealing while another misdemeanor count — public peace disturbance was dismissed — under a plea agreement with the government.

The government’s case against the defendant stems from an incident last month where the defendant stole a bag containing small work equipment that was in the bed of a pick up truck parked in front of a store in Tafuna.

A couple who was in their car in front of the store witnessed the robbery and told the owner of the bag, who then contacted police. Efforts to locate the defendant at the time of the robbery were successful until the evening hours when he was seen drinking alcohol with friends.

When police tried to take the defendant into custody, court information says the defendant started swearing at the officers. The stolen bag was recovered that evening and returned to its owner.

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