Police raid nets high-powered firearms

The Police have charged three people following the confiscation of illegal firearms and ammunition at Faleula and Leauva'a on Monday.

Acting on information that they received from the public, they executed a search warrant and were able to seize a 22 pistol, 303 rifle, 30 caliber rifle, two .22 rifles and a 12 gauge shotgun. High-powered ammunition was also seized in the raid.

In a statement posted on their Facebook page Wednesday morning, the Police said the three suspects are scheduled to appear in Court for mention on June 25 and July 9.

“Samoa Police Service acknowledge the support of members of the public for relaying information that are essential in our fight against crime in Samoa,” the Police said in the statement.

In July last year the Police destroyed 285 illegal firearms at the Police Headquarters. The weapons included AK-47 submachine guns and handguns. 

Commissioner of Police, Fuiavaili'ili Egon Keil, lamented the inability of law enforcement agencies back then to stop gun smuggling, and appealed to border agencies Customs and Immigration to work with the Police.

The illegal firearms were dumped in the ocean after they were destroyed in a ceremony at the Police Headquarters, which was also attended by members of the diplomatic community and Government leaders.

In December last year, a gun amnesty programme which was coordinated by the Police ended, with less than 100 illegal firearms collected. Fuiavaili'ili said the gun amnesty programme was a success, but not before warning that anyone found to be in possession of illegal firearms after the amnesty period will be charged and prosecuted.

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