In court news, the former vice principal of Paul Six College, Petelo Samaila was fined and placed on probation, last month in relation to a sexual matter involving a female student at the college.
In July, the defendant pleaded guilty to one count of sexual connection.
Sentencing was handed down by District Court Judge, Matautia Raymond Schister.
The police report says the former Vice Principle touched the victim inaprropriately on her chest, outside of the school campus.
The court heard the defendant and his wife already performed traditional “ifoga” to the victim and her family, where $300 tala was presented and one large fine mat.
The apology was accepted. The defendant was also fined by the Village Council with $2000 Tala plus two large fine mats.
Judge Matautia during sentencing pointed out the gravity of the offending on his view would be measured based on the circumstances of each case.
In this case, the circumstances involve a student-teacher relationship where there is always an element of trust, expectation and a responsibility on the part of the school administration and each teacher to keep the school environment as a safe learning zone and/or refuge for all students.
The fact that the student was outside of school grounds, as it was in this case, does not in any way or form relieve any teacher from that presumed professional responsibility in the face of an unlawful criminal conduct.
The defendant is ordered to undertake 100 hours community work and 12 months’ probation. He is further ordered to pay $500 as restitution to the victim’s family.