Closed bail hearing for men accused of P.M. plot

The bail hearing of two men accused of plotting to assassinate Prime Minister, Tuilaepa Dr. Sa'ilele Malielegaoi, was closed to the media on Friday. 

The hearing in the Supreme Court was before Justice Tafaoimalo Leilani Tuala-Warren.

The accused are Malele Paulo, better known as King Faipopo, and Lemai Faioso Sione. 

The men have been in custody for almost six months, since they were charged in August last year after allegations surfaced about their alleged plan on the Prime Minister's life.

The third accused is Taualai Leiloa, who has pleaded guilty to two counts of conspiracy to murder Tuliaepa. 

Paulo and Lemai have pleaded not guilty to the charges against them.

Lawyer Unasa Iuni Sapolu is representing them.

During the bail hearing on Friday, supporters of the accused men gathered outside the Court room. There was a heavy Police presence.

Close to twenty prosecution witnesses were also present. Among them were Leiloa and convicted murderer, Alatise Vitale. 

Leiloa is remanded on bail pending his sentencing while Vitale is in jail after he was recalled to serve his life imprisonment for breaching his parole conditions. 

Justice Tafaoimalo is scheduled to deliver her decision on the bail application for Lemai and Malele next week.

The close bail hearing was granted following an application from prosecution last year. 

Assistant Attorney General, Magele Leone Su’a, when she filed the application at the time cited safety of the Prime Minister as a major reason for the request. 

Bg pattern light


Subscribe to Samoa Observer Online

Enjoy access to over a thousand articles per month, on any device as well as feature-length investigative articles.

Ready to signup?