21 Aug 2003

American Samoa detains Chinese group for immigration offence

4:49 pm on 21 August 2003

Ten women and a man from China are behind bars in American Samoa's Tafuna Correctional Facility for immigration law violations.

The group were rounded up in a raid on an apartment building in Pago Pago by members of the Criminal Investigations and Intelligence Division.

None of the group possessed an American Samoan identification card.

It's believed that the ten women, most in their early twenties, were brought into the territory to work as prostitutes in the Atu'u Satala area.

The raid followed tips from residents concerned by the apparent growing number of Asian women seen on the streets.

The increase had surprised many, given that two years ago the Attorney-General made it a rule that no Oriental women would be issued entry permits to the territory.