27 July, 2020 Mulinuu, Apia. Nine former staff members of Sports Lotto appeared before the Supreme Court during criminal mentions this week, facing possible charges of theft as a servant following incidents of defrauding and theft recently discovered within the government-owned authority.
Prosecution confirms that the accused are, Silika Hala female of Afiamalu, Telesia Lina Bourne of Luatuanuu, Tamara Afolau Brown of Toomatagi, Masela Masoe of Vaitele-Uta, Ulalia Sulufau of Leulumoega-Tuai, Leilua Tonuu of Alamagoto and Malie, Pio Paepae of Ulutogia Aleipata, Talosaga Wales Amosa of Fagalii and Lui Feseetai of Vaitele-Tai.
The defendants were granted strict bail conditions, however, prosecution requested an adjournment in order to finalise charges against the former employees.
The matter went viral on facebook and social media when former employee Silika Hala who had been sacked in June this year made serious claims on social media alleging that TMS (The Mail Service) tickets bought through Samoa Sports Lotto for the Australian Lotto were not being transmitted, causing panic to customers.
Samoa Sports Lotto last week issued a press statement to clarify and clear up the confusion and misinformation surrounding the matter, for the information of its customers.
“As a result of its internal investigations Samoa Sports Lotto had lodged criminal complaints against a number of staff employed as teller/sales operators that have been implicated for defrauding and stealing from Samoa Sports Lotto and its TMS games customers.
“Those identified and referred to Police for their further investigation and subsequent action have now been formally charged by Police with theft and other unlawful acts.
“Those charged with theft will include the former employee responsible for the social media posts attacking Samoa Sports lotto. We have also filed additional criminal complaints against this same person and members of her family for defamation, harassment and intimidation as well as threats made against the staff and property of Samoa Sports lotto.
This has not only caused confusion, but detracted from the facts of this matter, which is that – Samoa sports lotto and a handful of its TMS customers were the victims of the unlawful actions of some dishonest staff employed as tellers/ operator and sales persons. As such, the company and its TMS Global Partners are exploring all legal options available to us against persons or parties that have undermined the reputation of Samoa Sports Lotto and our TMS Australian games.
Our TMS customers have been advised during the course of this matter of this investigation and options exercised to their satisfaction in accordance with the terms and conditions of their participation in TMS games as per legal notices and disclaimers posted at all our branches and agencies. We thank our TMS games customers for their assistance with our investigation and for their patience and understanding in this matter and their continued support and confidence in the integrity of our TMS games and Samoa Sports lotto, with TMS game sales remaining high despite the last 4 weeks of confusion and disruption.
This matter is now before the Courts for due process as such no further comment will be issued by Samoa Sports Lotto.
We hope that this clarifies the issues and dispels any further confusion surrounding this matter.