Mother begs for son's release after Faleatiu raid

The mother of one of the eleven suspects charged for the biggest drug bust in the nation's history in Faleatiu is asking the Court to release her son. 

The suspect is Fotu Baby Sanele Moa, who has been charged separately and was represented in court by lawyer, Treena Atoa. 

But after the matter was called, Fotu's mother raised her hand wanting to speak to Justice Leiataualesa Daryl Clarke directly about her son’s bail. 

The woman, who identified herself as Mugi, told the Court she did not want to interfere with legal proceedings but wanted her son to be released so he can look after her. 

“Your decision is the righteous one and as a parent [who] is old I ask that you let him go because there is no one in our family,” said the woman. 

“Can you release him so he can look after me…I need his help to care for me as you can see I am of old age.”

In response, Justice Leiataualesa told the elderly mother that the lawyer for her son will have to make the appropriate application before the Court. 

He said once the application is made the Court will consider the matters she raised.

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The assistant Attorney General, Magele Leone Su’a, has opposed bail application for all suspects, except for Malaesaili Sinapati who is a wheelchair-bound and his 17-year-old wife, Alisa Sinapati. 

Fotu is charged for driving a taxi on Faleatiu road without due care and attention and possession of utensils, namely a glass pipe. 

In addition, he is jointly charged with Fereti Fereti, prisoner Uili Manulelea and Parataiso Toailoa on charges of possession of 28,600 marijuana seeds and possession of marijuana leaves. 

Another couple, Kilifi Lealaitagomoa Palau and Senerita Maluolefale Asi Malu, being separately charged are facing charges of possession of narcotics and possession of ammunition. 

The couple is represented by lawyer Unasa Iuni Sapolu together with Fereti, Parataiaso and the Malaesaili and Alisa. 

Kilifi told the Court that he did not do anything wrong with his wife. 

He said his family has been banned from visiting them and are not being fed at prison for the past two weeks that they have been in custody. 

Another suspect arrested from the same, Tuanai Loka, is charged with cultivating 10,900 prohibited marijuana plants, possession of ammunition and firearms; two 12 gauge rifles; one .22 rifle; and one .303 rifle. 

He, together with Manuleleua, were not represented by a lawyer in Court. 

Justice Leiataualesa adjourned the matter until next mention for the accused to engage a lawyer and for others to instruct their counsels on their pleas for the charges they are facing. 

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