Ads by Google Ads by Google

Man convicted of threatening ex-girlfriend with a gun — he fired a shot

American Samoa High Court building

Pago Pago, AMERICAN SAMOA — A man convicted of unlawfully using a weapon when he threatened his ex-girlfriend with a gun before he fired a single shot into the ground was released from the Territorial Correctional Facility (TCF) for 90 days to seek and secure gainful employment.

Apelu Faavaeoletalalelei, who had been in custody since his arrest last year, unable to post a $10,000 surety bond, appeared in High Court two weeks ago for sentencing. However, his sentence was continued for another week, which was last week, because the court wanted to hear from the Immigration Office regarding Faavaeoletalalelei’s immigration status.

His defense attorney told the court that his client told him his immigration status expired in Dec. 5, 2019. His wife, who is the sponsor, renewed his immigration status whereas his new immigration I.D expired in Dec. 5, 2020 while he was in custody.

However, the prosecutor told the court that Faavaeoletalalelei’s immigration status expired in Feb. 5, 2020, which mean, he’s an overstayer.

Defendant’s attorney told the court that according to his client’s wife, she is willing to renew Faavaeoletalalelei’s immigration status.

The court told the defense’s attorney that the court’s problem is that she (wife) has told Probation something else — apparently she wants to deport the defendant.

After one week, which was last week, Faavaeoletalalelei re-appeared in court for sentencing, where he was sentenced by the court to five years imprisonment and a fine of $1,000.

Execution of the jail term was suspended and the defendant was placed on probation for 5 years subject to several conditions.

He was ordered to serve 20 months at the TCF and he was credited for the time he had served. Faavaeoletalalelei was released for 90 days to seek and secure gainful employment.

If he can’t secure gainful employment, the court orders him to return to the TCF to serve the remaining of his period of detention.

Upon release from detention, the court ordered him to immediately depart the territory and remain outside of its border for the duration of his probation.

Faavaeoletalalelei was ordered to pay his fine, not consume nor possess alcohol of any illegal drugs. He must submit himself for testing at the demand of the Probation Office to make sure he’s in compliance of the stay clean condition of his probation.

The court also ordered the defendant not to have any contact with his ex-girlfriend, nor may he possess any firearms throughout the time of his probation.