6 Dec 2011

American Samoa rugby player pleads guilty to assault on referee

11:45 am on 6 December 2011

The High Court of American Samoa has accepted the plea agreement for one of the five rugby players from Nuuuli charged in the assault of a referee from Samoa in July.

Selefuti Tago will be sentenced today.

Tago's court appointed attorney, Marie Alailima, recommended to the court that his client be sentenced to time served and probation.

She said Tago has been in custody for a little over four months now.

She added that because of what happened, Tago has been banned from playing rugby for life and this is the severe lesson he had to learn because he wasn't able to control his anger.

Tago asked for forgiveness and apologized to the victim, referee Ponafasio Vasa, and to his village of Nuuuli, especially his family for the embarrassment he's brought upon because of his actions.

Chief Justice Michael Kruse ordered the Probation Office Friday to look into the status of the victim's medical expenses and find out whether they've been paid.