8 Aug 2006

Chief Justice calls for revamp of American Samoa drug laws

7:39 pm on 8 August 2006

The chief justice in American Samoa is calling for a revamp of the territory's drug laws.

Michael Kruse says anomalies in the law must be addressed, because drug dealers are given better treatment than drug users.

His comments came during the sentencing of a Pago Pago woman who was supplementing her family's income by dealing in ice.

Mr Kruse says that drug dealers are a real danger to society but under current laws, they are not subject to mandatory jail terms unless they are caught selling to minors.

He says dealers are getting off more lightly than users, and the law gives courts no opportunity to liaise with appropriate agencies to treat them.

Mr Kruse says the chances of users re-offending once they've served their time is high.