16 Nov 2006

Samoa considers laws to allow some police to carry guns

8:05 pm on 16 November 2006

A proposed new Police Powers bill in Samoa will allow officers to carry guns in some cases, and use sniffer dogs and breathalyzers.

The bill will also give police more power to keep suspects under surveillance.

The proposed bill was tabled and debated in parliament this week with the majority of MPs supporting it over concerns at an increase in serious crime.

The prime minister, Tuila'epa Sa'ilele Malielegaoi, says introducing the breathalyzer is a sign the country is embracing new technology.

The legislation has been referred to parliament's bills committee before it goes back to the house for the third reading.