2 Mar 2009

Chinese couple in American Samoa convicted of receiving stolen goods will have to leave

6:42 am on 2 March 2009

A Chinese couple operating a business in American Samoa have been convicted of receiving stolen property and will have to leave the territory within six months as a condition of their sentence.

Xue Mai Bai and Chi Zhi Ming were both found guilty over two separate incidents.

Ming pleaded guilty to receiving five IMAC computers which were stolen from the Department of Education warehouse in 2007.

His wife was found guilty of receiving stolen cartons of cigarettes.

They were sentenced to seven year jail terms suspended on condition that they leave the territory and not return for five years.

They were also fined 5,000 US dollars each.

The Chief Justice, Michael Kruse, says their departure will be stayed for six months to accommodate a complaint with the federal government.

He says if there's no development in the federal case within this time frame they'll have to leave the territory.