Hans Keil

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Hans Keil
Personal details
Born Joachim Hans Keil
Died 31 August 2018

Hans Joachim "Joe" Keil (died 31 August 2018)[1] was a Samoan politician and diplomat. He was a member of parliament in Samoa and in 2007 was Associate Trade Minister;[2] he also served as Samoa's Minister of Commerce, Industry and Labour.

Keil was born in Samoa, then Western Samoa; his father, who was of German origin, was the first official lottery operator in the country.[1] His mother was Samoan and Chinese.[3] Keil owned Apia Broadcasting, which operated Samoan channel TV3 until its sale to Radio Polynesia in April 2018.[4]

Politically he was affiliated with the Human Rights Protection Party.[1]

Arrest by US border guards[edit]

On 9 September 2008, while in Branson, Missouri assisting Samoans employed at a theater there, Keil was arrested by United States immigration agents and jailed. A U.S. Navy veteran and American citizen, he had presented his American passport on entry but in Branson also presented his Samoan diplomatic passport. A database search by the agents showed that Keil had twice applied for certification of American citizenship based on being born abroad to a mother who was an American citizen, but she had not resided in the United States for the five years after her sixteenth birthday that the law then required, and Kyle had not appeared for the required interview to discuss this.[3][5][6] A petition with almost 10,000 signatures was presented to the U.S. Embassy in Apia, Samoa after a peaceful march. Mark Moors, one of the petition presenters and march spokesman, told Radio New Zealand International's correspondent in Apia, Autagavaia Tipi Autagavaia that the petition would be passed on to Condoleezza Rice, US Secretary of State.[7]

A month after his arrest, Keil became aware that he held American citizenship through his father, because his paternal grandfather had become a naturalized citizen of the United States.[3] In December a United States magistrate in Springfield, Missouri dropped the charges against him and ordered the $25,000 bond he had been required to pay to return to Samoa to be refunded to him.[6]

Keil sued the immigration agents for unlawful detention, also claiming that his Samoan passport was unlawfully seized and he was not allowed to contact the Samoan embassy on his arrest and that he was denied access to legal counsel when being interviewed by government agents.[8] His suit was rejected by the district court, which held the immigration agents had legal immunity because they had sufficient cause to doubt Keil's claim of American citizenship, and the district court's judgement was upheld on appeal in November 2011.[3]


  1. ^ a b c "Former Samoa minister and businessman dies". RNZ News. 1 September 2018. 
  2. ^ U 2007*De Consensus on Economic Partnership Agreements between EU and ACP Countries Archived 24 November 2010 at the Wayback Machine.
  3. ^ a b c d "Hans Keil v. Glenn Triveline". MoreLaw. Retrieved 3 September 2018. 
  4. ^ "Samoa's TV3 sold to local commercial broadcaster". RNZ News. 10 April 2018. 
  5. ^ "Keil Family Calls On Samoans To Support US Petition". PacificEyeWitness.org. 12 October 2008. 
  6. ^ a b "US drops charge against Samoan Associate minister Keil". Marianas Variety. 15 December 2008. 
  7. ^ "10,000 sign Samoan petition to free Keil in US". Radio New Zealand International. 11 November 2008. Retrieved 2 October 2011. 
  8. ^ Angela Riley (12 November 2009). "Samoan official files suit over arrest in Branson" (subscription required). BNET Australia – via Missouri Lawyers Weekly.