Immigration agents “caught in the middle”

Employees of the Immigration Office are anxiously awaiting whether they will receive their paychecks on time this weekend for those receiving direct deposits and Monday for those getting paper checks.

Both the Attorney General and Chief Immigration Officer are not talking but employees tell KHJ News that in the last payperiod they didn’t receive their paychecks until two days later because of a dispute over where they should clock in.

The immigration officers say AG Talauega Eleasalo Ale recently directed that instead of them clocking in at the Immigration Office or at the airport for those on duty there, that they all clock in at the AG’s Office time clock.

This was because the AG felt that immigration employees working flights and vessels were abusing overtime.

According to the agents, Chief Immigration Officer Peseta Dennis Lutu made attempts to convince the AG that it was impractical for agents at the airport to come to the AG’s Office to clock in especially for early morning flights or after hours duty.

But the AG insisted on the change.

The Chief Immigration Officer is reported to have told his staff to continue clocking in as before.

When it was time for time cards to be prepared for the last payperiod, time cards for the immigration employees were not processed.

And the result was that none of them received paychecks on payday.

It’s not clear who gave approval for the special run to cover the Immigration Office paychecks which were issued two days later.

According to the immigration officers, they have continued to clock in at the Immigration Office and not the AG’s Office.

They’ve received word that their time cards for the upcoming pay period are not being processed with the rest of the Legal Affairs Staff.

Which means they wont receive their paychecks on time.

They are hoping that Governor Lolo will intervene because they say while the tug of war is going on between the AG and the Chief Immigration Officer they are caught in the middle.


  1. Frustrated

    How more ridiculous can this cartoon of an AG get? Seriously how are the immigration agents supposed to clock in and out from the AG office. Please get this clown out he is a horrible attorney that lacks the leadership to guide the AG office. Everyone knows it’s Counsel Leota who really knows what anything about the law…….we need change American Samoa …please wakeup

  2. You didn't know, Dennis is the pretend AG

    You didn’t know. Dennis Lutu is the pretend AG. In his mind, he is the AG. This is why he runs to Lolo at every turn and why he makes decisions as if he is anything but the manager of immigration.

    If this story is or isn’t true. This just shows you how dysfunctional the AG office is and why the laws are never followed in that office. Dennis has been nothing but a black cloud over that office.

  3. Dice

    Sole, mafaufau muamua oga kaukala lea o le guku, i’m talking about you frustrated, u don’t even know wats going on, do ur research first then leave a reply.

  4. rankon

    the issue reflects the lack of commitment of the site supervisors at the airport and at the wharf. they are responsible for making sure employees are not abusing overtime hours; and if employees are dishonest with time-in and time-out then site supervisor should solve the issues to prevent disastrous result with pay checks. immigration employees should adhere to the action AG rendered.

  5. REMOVE loa le kama o PRIDE , ua hungry la’u fanau pe a leai se siaki a sio’u HONEY.

    And who is the boss for the AG office, refer to office organizational chart! May not know the details of daily issues with this office (AG), the abuse of time has always been in place with all of ASG and never addressed. The AG may have to put his feet down, make hard choices to address. The public may not fully understand. He Mr. AG has heard multiple complaints of immigration officers and their work ethics. The public have been misled and frustrated when immigration officers do not understand the law. Suggest Chief Immigration Officer train his officers their duties and learning and understanding the laws, act upon it and know their limits.
    The famous and handsome Chief of Immigration Officer Peseta Dennis Lutu may have tried in his attempt to convince the AG that it was impractical for agents at the airport to come to AG’s Office to clock in especially for early morning flight or after hour duty. Instead come up with plan A or B maybe Z and submit for AG Ale to approve. ( oh wait dunno AG office organization chart)
    How about utilize Airport Security Office rather than have immigration officers and their families face unexpected consequences. Now the immigration officers and Legal Affairs maybe confused, O ai e fa’alogo iai!
    Both at fault, both keeper tho! REMOVE loa le kama o PRIDE , ua hungry la’u fanau pe a leai se siaki a sio’u HONEY.
    “We’re all islands shouting lies to each other across seas of misunderstanding.”
    -Rudyard Kipling

  6. Ata Ata

    Se Dennis le o oe o se boss. O le AG e boss ia oe. A faatonu atu ona fai laia ae aua e te fia poto. Na la ua oso lou fia kama ae le totogia ai tgt faigaluega. O oe li isi tgt lea ua leaga ai le immigration office.


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