Faleatiu drug raid nets weed, weapons

By Vatapuia Maiava ,

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ILLEGAL: Marijuana plants found at Faleatiu.

ILLEGAL: Marijuana plants found at Faleatiu.

More than a hundred marijuana plants were seized during a drug raid at Faleatiu in the early hours of Friday morning.

Police Commissioner, Fuiavailili Egon Keil, led 60 officers, including members of the Tactical Operations Section (T.O.S.), during the raid, which started at 5am.

They returned to the Office at around 4pm with marijuana plants, seeds, as well as illegal ammunitions.

Five arrests were made with the suspects ages ranging from 30-40. 

According to Fuiavailili, there is still some cleaning up to do up at Faleatiu.

“There is still al lot of Marijuana plants still up there,” he said.

“We’ve been scoping the place for a couple of months now and our intel told us that there are still plants somewhere up there. We went up and got over 100 Marijuana plants, 50 seeds and unauthorized ammunition; we arrested five individuals; everything was done under a search and arrest warrant.”

The Commissioner hailed the bravery of his officers.

 “I’m very proud of my T.O.S team, no one was injured or died, no civilians were affected and it all went well,” he said. “There were 60+ officers who took part in the raid but for some reason they knew we were coming and so they didn’t want to face us.

“They were either tipped off or they saw us coming then warned family members through the use of mobile phones.”

According to the Commissioner, he and the officers went all the way into the bushy interiors of Faleatiu to make the bust. He also explained how difficult it was to operate in the dense forests but they did all they could to make sure everything went smoothly.

 “We are determined to go back and clean it properly; after our first raid last year the village came and spoke with us displaying much appreciation for what we did,” he said.

“Certain individuals are involved in these acts and they still haven’t learnt their lesson, all the issues in Samoa are connected to this so we need to take a strong stand against drugs.”

Although illegal ammunitions were found, no weapons were on sight during the raid.

“Unfortunately they hid the guns and our Intel says that they have AK47’s, we were told by one of the arrested individuals that one of the guys owns two high powered assault rifle AK 47’s.

“He walked around all week shooting his weapons up there but for some reason he did not show when we went up there. We have the impression that he knew we were coming therefore he didn’t show up; these weapons are definitely not licensed especially if they are assault rifles.

“We appreciate the support of the community and our goal is to keep Samoa safe which is why we risk our lives to do these things.”

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