Five granted bail in Malifa drug case

By Sialai Sarafina Sanerivi 06 February 2024, 10:00PM

Five of the 14 people charged after a drug raid in Malifa earlier this year were granted bail while the remaining nine have to spend time in custody until their next court appearance.

Police executed a drug raid at Malifa in January and apprehended 18 individuals after discovering illicit drugs such as methamphetamine and marijuana, illegal firearms and cash at a family's residence. 

Four were released after police conducted their preliminary investigations while 14 were remanded in custody. Of those released, the youngest was 14-years-old.

On Tuesday, four women and a man were granted bail with special bail conditions.

Those who have been granted bail include Venus Etevise Chang Wong (42-year-old female of Malifa), Lesina Faualo (45-year-old female of Tauese, Vailima, Nono'a and Vaoala), Meripa Choo Koon, (32-year-old female of Vaitoloa and Vaito'omuli), and Antonia Tuala, (25-year-old female of Leauvaa and Vaiusu).

Paulo Afamasaga Faitele, a 53-year-old man of Malifa and Los Angeles (America) was also granted bail on Tuesday when the matter was called before the District Court. 

The bail hearing of the matter was initially held on Monday morning in the Supreme Court while Afamasaga's bail application was referred to the District Court. 

The other accused that are still in custody include Michale Chang Wong (43 year old male of Malifa and Fausaga Safata), Trevor Aloese Pitoitua (25 year old male of Fa'atoia and Levili), Tasi Divine Chang Wong (21 year old male of Malifa and Toomatagi), Lewis Brown (31 year old male of Lalovaea), Fuivai Pinati (50 year old male of Falealili Manunu and Vaiusu), Sam Victor Tiona (20 year old male of Malifa, Vaito'omuli and Vaiafai Iva Savai'i), Michael Vito (28 year old male of Lotopa), Michael Viliamu (25 year old male of Vaiusu) and Lagani Pelenatino, a 31 year old male of Falefa and Malifa.

Police had confirmed that the charges are possession of narcotics and possession of utensils with the possibility of additional charges. 

It was also confirmed by police that amongst the individuals apprehended during the drug raid, there were individuals with previous criminal records. 

By Sialai Sarafina Sanerivi 06 February 2024, 10:00PM
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