4 Nov 2015

American Samoa rape charged enters plea deal

2:06 pm on 4 November 2015

The eldest of three people from a Samoan school group charged with the rape of a 15-year-old American Samoa girl last April has entered a plea agreement.

28 year old Vaega Ioane Anderson pleaded guilty to third degree sexual abuse and the government has moved to dismiss the other three charges against him of rape, sexual assault and endangering the welfare of a child.

The plea agreement has been approved by the chief justice Michael Kruse and associate judges Faamausili Pomele and Muasau Tofili.

Mr Anderson was a volunteer with the Don Bosco group and he and two students, in American Samoa for the Flag Day celebration, were charged with having sex with underage girls.

The accused and the victims have told police the sex was consensual but under local law it's a crime to have sex with someone under the age of 17.