Court fines man who misled police and public about girls kidnapping

By Rula Su’a-Vaai

APIA SAMOA – TUESDAY 5 FEBRUARY2019: The man who gave police and the public misleading information about a black van kidnapping young girls, was fined $500 talā by the District Court today.

Liua Savaiinaea, a first offender pleaded guilty to 4 charges of providing misleading information.

He was convicted on 2 counts of misleading police and giving false information which the Court fined him $400 talā.

He was fined $100 tala for the other two charges that include publishing false information.

Judge Fepuleai Ameperosa Roma gave Savaiinaea up until 4pm this Thursday to pay the fine.

Outside of Court, Savaiinaea told the media he was very sorry and he apologised to the public.

Last year Savaiinaea made up a story of a black van that kidnapped three young girls and warned parents not to leave their young daughters walk the streets alone. He posted this on his facebook page. National television news, radio and newspapers followed up his story where he gave accounts of the black van with a broken rear window and the location at where at Vaitele the young girls were ‘kidnapped’.

The judge took into account his being a first time offender amongst other mitigating factors. He was given a stern warning that he will not escape a prison sentence the next time he appears in Court on similar charges.