1 Nov 2002

Passengers searched when ferry reaches American Samoa

4:14 pm on 1 November 2002

Passengers travelling on the inter island ferry from Samoa to American Samoa last nightwere searched by police.

It was the first time people arriving on the Lady Naomi have been searched and comes after the discovery of large quantities of marijuana on the two previous trips by the ferry.

The General manager of the Samoa Shipping Coroporation Mapusua Willie Nansen says the discoveries of marijuana are giving his company and the Government a bad image.

So he says they decided to introduce checks of cargo, luggage and passengers when the ferry docks in Pago Pago.

Two weeks ago ten thousand dollars worth of marijuana was found by customs and more was discovered last week.

Last night all luggage and cargo on the ferry was opened and searched and passengers were frisked.

Mapusua says it is unfortunate that the actions of a few will inconvenience the rest but the checks are necessary to stop the importing of contraband material.