Convict gets 18 more years

By Pai Mulitalo Ale 20 August 2016, 12:00AM

The man dubbed Samoa’s most dangerous prisoner, Lauititi Tualima, has been sentenced for a further 18 years for rape and other charges. 

The decision was delivered yesterday by Justice Lesatele Rapi Vaai in the Supreme Court. 

Tualima’s latest sentence is for multiple charges including rape, sexual violation, burglary, robbery, threatening to kill and being armed with a dangerous weapon. 

These charges are in relation to the attack of an Australian couple who were staying at the Lupesina Treesort on 24 September 2015. 

In handing down the sentence, Justice Lesatele said Tualima’s actions are unacceptable and he had violated the privacy of the couple who were guests of Samoa. 

Not only that he violated their privacy, he also demanded cash, personal belongings and he went on to rape the woman.

“You decided to stay and you took advantage of the couple, you tied them up and continued to sexually abuse the victim in front of her partner,” Justice Lesatele said. 

Mindful of his history of escaping from prison, Justice Lesatele said Tualima has obviously decided to make Tafaigata Prison his home.

The Court heard that Tualima’s criminal life started as a young person. And now aged 23, he is set to stay behind bars well into his 50s when he’s finally done serving all the sentences he has been handed.

Tualima had pleaded guilty to all the charges against him. He acknowledged that what he had done was unacceptable and it had brought shame to Samoa.

But Justice Lesatele was not convinced that he was remorseful.

“You are a big risk to the general public,” said Justice Lesatele.

He told Tualima that unless he really wants to change, prison is the only place for him to keep members of the public safe.

In his pre-sentence report prepared by the Probation Office, it highlighted that the accused is not remorseful at all. This is reflected in the numerous times he has escaped from prison.

Lesatele said the only mitigating factor for him was his early guilty plea, which saved the Court’s time.

By Pai Mulitalo Ale 20 August 2016, 12:00AM

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