23 October 2020 Apia Samoa. Police Commissioner Su’a Fuiavailiili Egon Keil confirmed three have been arrested and face meth-related charges following a police raid at Faleatiu this week.
Methemphetamine, cash, weapons, marijuana plants and a rental car were confiscated by police during an incident at the notorious Faleatiu village.
A Moana Rentals vehicle found at the location has been impounded by police.
Su’a Fuiavailiili says their investigations are now focused on how the methamphetamine is being brought into Samoa.
“The information we have right now leads us to believe this is not being manufactured in Samoa, it’s coming from somewhere..”
“So how is it getting through our borders?.. we have to work together with our partners to make sure strict measures are put into place at our borders.”
“E iai le mea lea e ui mai ai mea ia, pe sau mai le vaa, sau i le container, sau i totonu o se taavale .. how is it getting here?”
The Police Commissioner stressed the need for border agencies to work together, if the war against drugs is to be won in Samoa and across the Pacific region.
“O le galulue faatasi o border agencies; Customs, Immigration, Ports Authority, Airport Authority…e le o se mea e mafai ona fai na o leoleo.”
Commissioner Keil said the high volumes of cannabis and level of activity evident in Samoa’s recent drug raids places it in the category of transnational crime.
“These narcotics and weapons are somehow coming into Samoa and these are organised transnational crime type of activity..”
Su’a referred to the raid in November 2019 where police arrested 11 and brought in marijuana plants worth more than $10 million tala found in 6 different plantations deep into the notorious Faleatiu hill area.
“That is considered transnational because it is highly likely to be going out to other regions, outside of Samoa”, said Commissioner Keil.
“So regional organisations are alerted to try and track where all of this could be going..”
The Police Commissioner also gave an undate of Samoa’s three month gun amnesty that goes to the end of December 2020.
He acknowledged the support of the Australian Federal Police (AFP) and confirmed that 56 guns had been turned in so far.
Illegal weapons such as hand guns displayed may look old and rusty, the Commissioner says, “but they do fire and they can kill”.