7 Oct 2003

Exemption from custom searches blamed for drug imports in American Samoa

9:12 am on 7 October 2003

A member of a House committee in American Samoa says he believes that government and other businesses who are exempt from customs searches could be a mjaor avenue for drug smuggling.

Vaiausia Yandall says he has received confirmation from customs officials that all government agencies and the territory's two canneries are exempt from customs searches.

He says the government might share the blame for high drug use because of those exemptions.

Mr Yandall said the exemption provided the prefect smuggling opportunity.