4 female employees of TSM Mart arrested for stealing and embezzlement
Pago Pago, AMERICAN SAMOA — Police arrested this week, four female employees of TSM Mart in Tafuna, on allegations that the group had been stealing from the company since last year.
All four defendants: Kalameli Tauave, Faatamalii Atiae, Manaia Iopu, and Alofagia Alofipo, made their initial appearances before District Court Judge Elvis P. Patea yesterday morning.
They are all being represented by Assistant Public Defender Anna Whiles.
The government is charging each woman with stealing and embezzlement, class C felonies, punishable by imprisonment of up to 7 years, a fine of up to $5,000 or both for each count.
Bail for each defendant is set at $10,000
If able to post bond, the court has ordered each defendant to remain law abiding, make all their court appearances, not leave or attempt to leave the territory, and they all have to surrender their travel documents to the government’s attorney.
They are also ordered not to make any direct or indirect contact with the government’s witnesses, including their former employer.
Based on information provided to the court by Immigration, all four women are here legally. The group is scheduled to appear July 12th at 11a.m. for a preliminary examination.
According to the government’s case, representatives from TSM Mart contacted police for assistance, after they discovered that some of the company’s funds had been stolen from the cash registers.
It is alleged that over $64,000 was stolen by one of the defendants, and two of the defendants used their pin codes to open one of the cash registers and withdraw cash, which was allegedly divided amongst the four women.
The government claims that the four defendants started the alleged scheme last year, and it continued to the beginning of this year.
An internal investigation by the company revealed that the four employees stole money from the company, and the findings were later forwarded to police to assist them in their investigations.
When interviewed by police, all four defendants — through written statements — admitted to the allegations.
More details on this case will be published later this week.