Police raid nets $15,000 worth of cannabis
A Ministry of Police raid on a residence at Nuu Fou yesterday morning led to the confiscation of cannabis with a street value of $15,000.
Commissioner of Police, Fuiavailiili Egon Keil, told Samoa Observer that the Police were tipped off on the residence that sold and distributed the illicit drug in the Apia area.
“The product came from another village which is then stockpiled in the residence that we raided this morning. We got a search warrant and with the assistance of our tactical team — our criminal investigation division with our narcotics unit also with our canine unit and general policing — they came together and formulated a plan so everyone will be safe with the type of equipment that they needed to take for the search.
“They confiscated cellphones, a vehicle, 81 marijuana branches, 39 small packages about three by five in size and is worth $15.00 each, 24 marijuana bullets, 189 marijuana seeds, one stem, and a lot of loose leaves,” he said.
Fuiavailiili said he was pleased no one was injured in the Police operation, which led to the arrest of the suspects with more arrests expected.
“We arrested four suspects, three males and one female and they have been charged with possession and distributing marijuana/cannabis and we are highly against this sort of behavior. We also have other leads to other sources as well and as far as cultivation of marijuana and we have that information as well.
“We are not just targeting marijuana; we are also targeting other narcotics as well along with individuals that distribute or bring in narcotics in Samoa,” he added.
The Police Commissioner said it is against the law in Samoa for narcotics to be present in the country.
“I understand in other countries it is legal for medical purposes or private recreation. But here in Samoa, the use, possession, and distribution of cannabis is not lawful.
“The Samoa Police will continue to search and stop this sort of behavior in Samoa because there were some incidents that we had in Samoa which involved marijuana; cannabis distorts the mind and impairs your ability to react and act appropriately as to why it is illegal in Samoa.
“The law is the law and we will use all our resources and capabilities to stop it, with this raid it serves to send a message that we are not going to sit idly by while this happens under our watch,” he added.
The Police Commissioner also added that “they are a very busy organisation”, which he said is surprising for such a small island country like Samoa.
“At the moment we are waiting for the court registrar to come and remand the suspects — if they feel necessary to remand under criteria — whether we are going to keep them here or send them to Tafaigata or released at liberty so it depends.
“We do appreciate the help and assistance from the community throughout the year, it has been a blessed year for the Samoan Police force, and no one died or had any major injuries,” he said.