20 Nov 2008

Samoans told to back off US judiciary in Keil case

4:34 pm on 20 November 2008

American Samoa's member of the US Congress Faleomavaega Eni Hunkin has called on Samoans not to pressure the US judiciary over the detention of Cabinet Minister Hans Joachim Keil.

Mr Keil is accused of illegally holding a U.S passport and is under strict bail conditions in Missouri where is he required to stay until his case is heard.

Faleomavaega says he's met members of Mr Keil's family as well as the U.S Veterans Association of Samoa, of which Mr Keil is a member.

The Congressman says he has told the Keil family that any form of political pressure being placed on the US judiciary is unacceptable.

He says he has offered to testify on Mr Keil's behalf when he appears in court.

Faleomavaega also says Mr Keil is not a criminal or a terrorist, and the matter could have been handled differently.