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Samoa police carry out two drug raids in one day, 10 arrests

More than 50 police were involved in two alleged drug raids that ended with 10 people being arrested early last week.Police started their raid at 8.30am at Ma’agiagi Village, and Toleafoa Market in town.According to a well-placed ministry source police staged the raids after alerts from members of the public, alleging marijuana being sold at Toleafoa Market.Another police source said two of the people arrested were women.“One of them was arrested from the raid at Ma’agiagi and the other from the second one at the market,” said the source.“Three of the arrests were made from Toleafoa (market) and the other seven from Ma’agiagi…they were drug raids.”The source said those arrested are most likely to be charged with possession of narcotics.Talo seller Mona Taito said she had never seen so many police before.“I was selling my goods when around six police cars pulled in.“There had to be more than 50 officers.“Most of them weren’t in their uniforms and very few had their police clothes on,” she said.“I saw them taking in a women and several other men…they also brought in two sniffer dogs.”Taito said the officers conducted searches at the stalls of coconut sellers.“They searched the tables and under the tarpaulins the women used to cover their goods,” she said.Another bystander, Nofogata Ali’itauuni of Tafagamanu was there when the operation kicked into action.He alleges a police officer threw a boy’s phone on the road during the commotion.“The kid was trying to take photos of what the police were doing,” he said.