3 Mar 2005

American Samoa cracking down on illegal overstayers with deportations continuing

11:48 am on 3 March 2005

A further six Chinese overstayers are to be deported from American Samoa today as efforts to crack down on illegal residents gathers speed.

A total of 30 overstayers, from China, the Philippines, South Korea, Tonga, and Samoa, have been deported in the last two weeks.

The new Attorney-General, Sialega Malaetasi Togafau, says he is cracking down on people staying illegally.

Our correspondent, Monica Miller, says immigration vans have been seen in villages around the territory as they track people down.

"The Attorney-General says that this is going to increase rapidly over the coming weeks. They have pretty much identified businesses and homes where people that have overstayed their permits, are residing and will be paying a visit to those homes''."

Monica Miller says it's believed that there are about one thousand overstayers in the territory.

She says a computerised immigration system is allowing authorities to more effectively track people staying illegally.