Police await legal advice on alcohol sale

The Ministry of Police and Prisons is awaiting legal advice from the Attorney General’s Office after a supermarket was caught allegedly selling alcohol to minors.

Deputy Police and Prisons Commissioner, Papalii Monalisa Tiai-Keti, in an email reply to questions from the Samoa Observer said the Police had completed their investigations and are now waiting for the Attorney General’s Office to advise what course of action should be taken.

“Our office has completed its investigation and is seeking legal advice from the Office of the Attorney General on our recommendation based on provision 15(5) of the emergency order No.16,” she said in her email response. “Students involved were issued formal warning in the presence of their parents.”

Papalii did not reveal the name of the supermarket as well as the college and the students who were caught.

However, the business is understood to be P.S Mini Mart, which is located opposite the Maluafou College.

The business owner, who did not want to be identified, admitted during an interview with the Samoa Observer that they were warned by the Police for allegedly selling alcohol to minors.

"My staff did not know that they were students because they were in mufti and not in uniforms. I have also asked my staff members not to sell alcohol to teenagers, but she said that they looked like they are over 21 years old," he said. 

"We are making sure that it doesn't happen again, yes, I know about the regulations for the purchasing of alcohol. And we are no longer accepting any teens from buying any more alcohol.”

Under the Liquor Act of Samoa the selling or supplying of any liquor to a person under the age of 21 is prohibited, and any person that sells or supplies any liquor to a person under the age of 21 years commits an offence and is liable to a fine not exceeding $500 tala or imprisonment for a term not exceeding 6 months.

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