31 Jan 2008

American Samoan leader's trial set for January 2009

4:42 pm on 31 January 2008

The federal District Court in Washington D.C. has set the trial date for American Samoan Lt. Governor, Ipulasi Aitofele Sunia, and Senator Tulifua Lam Yuen for January the 13th next year.

The two have been charged with conspiracy, fraud, bribery and obstruction of agency proceedings related to non bid contracts awarded to companies they owned.

Lawyers for the defendants have not responded to requests for information.

US government sources have said that at a status hearing last Friday, the prosecution was ready to move forward with its case but defence lawyers requested more time to prepare for trial.

The sources also said an earlier trial date could not be set because of scheduling conflicts between the judge and the defence lawyers.