Public Apology

May 31, 2008

Corazon Atalig, alleged human trafficker was sentenced in March 2008. She has written a letter to the editor of the Saipan Tribune apologizing for her role in human trafficking and destroying the lives of young women and minors from the Philippines who were forced to dance naked and coerced into prostitution in her husband's Starlite and Star Dust Clubs.

The plea bargain forgave 226 counts including prostitution, human trafficking, unlawful exploitation of a minor, and harboring an illegal alien. The Marianas Variety reported on the sentencing in March:

Corazon Atalig was ordered to report to the Department of Corrections on Jan. 28 at 8 a.m. to start serving her jail sentence and she will be released on Jan. 25, 2009 at 8 a.m.

She will be eligible for parole as determined by the Board of Parole.

According to Wiseman’s order, the parties agreed that Corazon Atalig “shall be deemed to have one misdemeanor conviction with respect to immigration matters.”

From 226 counts to a pleas bargain that reduced those to an immigration crime. Where is the justice in that?

Here's her apology:

Open letter to the public

I am writing this letter to publicly apologize to all of you for the mistake (s) which I had committed, for that reason I asked for your forgiveness. I am deeply remorseful and promise never to commit such mistake again.

Corazon R. Atalig

I wonder if the apology is sincere or if it was ordered as part of the sentence or plea bargain. Perhaps it was made so she could receive parole. It is certainly a shallow apology considering that damage she inflicted upon her innocent victims. Human trafficking is more than a "mistake."

This woman has the potential to do some public good. If she is truly sincere, after her release she could speak publicly about the crimes she committed, and it could possibly deter others from this selfish, immoral practice that has been prevalent in the CNMI.


The Saipan Blogger アンジェロ・ビラゴメズ said...

Our courts give notoriously light sentences to everyone.

Anonymous said...

why doesn't the govs close circle of clubs ever get popped(mermaids, body motion, micronesia club)? and if they did, would judge W be the one handing out the sentences/

Saipan Writer said...

I saw the apology and thought how inadequate, how absolutely absurd to think that this is even worth the ink used to print it.

Good post.

Anonymous said...

i just want to ask if anyone have been at garapan and experience what i have experienced. one night by 10:30 pm i was driving on the second road of garapan, i am waiting for my turn to go ahead coz there are some cars coming. then these 4 cars stopped in the middle of the road (cars seems illegal taxi coz its tinted and all white) suddenly passengers are coming out fr the cars. they are all running going in one direction. and i've notice that they are all chinese lady. somebody told me that there are some customers looking for services and these chinese ladies are offering their services. Im jusr wondering if this is legal? im just curious coz i thought some govt dept are very strict in regards to this kind of prob.

Anonymous said...

I knew this woman personally the girls called her aunty, let me tell you she was a piece of work, knew exactly what she was doing and should have got 15yrs the husband was worse though, the apology is only that she is sorry she got caught and she will do it differently next time.
With the racisim in Saipan its a wonder there was a trial at all.