Samoan Judge Alalatoa Rosella Papali’i
By Lagi Keresoma
APIA, SAMOA – THURSDAY 12 JULY 2018: District Court Judge, Alalatoa Rosella Papali’i has issued a loud message to would be scammers not to underestimate the Pacific systems.
Alalatoa delivered the message when she sentenced the Romanian citizen, Catalin Razvan who was found guilty on 30 charges of stealing from 9 Automated Teller Machines in Samoa.
“The significance of Razvan’s offence is that he planned the crime in another country, then traveled to Samoa and executed it here.”
Razvan posed as a tourist and carried out his illegal plan in Samoa.
Judge Alalatoa believes that some of the factors that lure scammers to the Pacific are its isolation and the assumption that the Pacific is not technologically equipped.
“They try their luck out here in our little paradise not knowing that we are technologically advanced; so do not underestimate the systems that our little countries in the Pacific have,” said Alalatoa.
Samoa has had her share of scammers who stole from ATM machines.
Two Chinese citizens are currently serving time at the Tafa’igata prison on similar offences using mechanical devices to steal from local ATMs.
“To the intending scammers, know that we will deal with you accordingly,” said Judge Alalatoa.