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Pacific Islands Development Program, East-West Center

With Support From Center for Pacific Islands Studies, University of Hawai‘i


Alleged Rapist Extradited From Samoa To New Zealand
Man accused of raping 20 year-old woman in 2005

By Alan Ah Mu

APIA, Samoa (Talamua, Feb. 20, 2013) – A man performed publicly in Apia, the United States and probably Germany, while at the same time he was on the 10 most wanted list in New Zealand for alleged rape.

Fatu Seti or Fatu Moimoi led the siva tau dance in front of Government Building just before Manu Samoa played the Springboks in the 2011 World Cup before a crowd of supporters.

He performed before local and international television cameras.

A wearer of a traditional full body tattoo or tatau, Fatu was a prominent member of Samoa Tourism Authority’s dance troupe.

He can now be identified as Fatu Seti, who the New Zealand Herald reported late last year, had fled to Samoa after posing as a fa’afafine and acquired a new passport under the name Fatu Moimoi.

At the time he was out on bail awaiting legal proceedings for the 2005 rape of a 20-year-old woman.

In Samoa, The Herald reported, Fatu joined a fire dancing troupe and traveled to the United States – and that he worked at an up-market resort.

Sources here identified Fatu as the man who was in a relationship with the owner of a resort here – and who was a prominent member of the STA’s dance troupe, though not known as a fire dancer as reported in New Zealand.

In a statement released yesterday, the Office of the Attorney General, said that Fatu Seti was extradited to New Zealand to face charges.

He was accompanied out of the country by two New Zealand police officers in the weekend.

This followed a request from New Zealand authorities on 21 December 2012 for his extradition.

"A warrant of arrest was issued by the New Zealand Courts on 13 October 2005 against Mr. Seti, and remained in full force and effect," the Attorney General’s office said.

"On 28 January 2013, the Minister of Justice issued the authority to the Attorney General to proceed with the request for the extradition of Mr. Seti.

"Once the authority to proceed was received, the Attorney General applied for a warrant of arrest for the purposes of committal with the District Court of Samoa.

"Upon receiving the Attorney General’s application, the District Court of Samoa issued a warrant for the arrest of Mr. Seti for the purpose of committal.

"On 7 February 2013, the Police executed the warrant of arrest and arrested Mr. Seti, who appeared with his lawyer on 8 February 2013 before His Honour Judge Vaepule Vaemoa Vaai. After hearing from both the Office of Attorney General and counsel for Mr. Seti, the Honourable Judge Vaai committed Mr. Seti to custody to await extradition.

"Mr. Seti did not contest the extradition proceedings. Once notice of the Court order was made available to the Prime Minister (who was also Acting Minister of Justice at the time) Hon. Tuilaepa Fatialofa Lupesoliai Sailele Malielegaoi, an order for the extradition of Mr. Seti was duly issued.

"Mr. Seti was escorted by New Zealand Police with the assistance of the Samoan Police on 16 February 2013 to Faleolo International Airport to travel to New Zealand to answer to the criminal charges against him."

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