Saipan, CNMI: Murderer and Others Paroled

April 21, 2010

Ice dealer and violent criminal David Tanaka Diaz was not the only one to receive parole on March 12, 2010. Also paroled was Eugene Blas Repeki, who along with two others, murdered Filipnio security guard Cesario B. Valerio in 1999.

Repeki, Anthony Magofna and Thomas Basa, beat the guard with a homemade ash tray and he later died from the injuries. In May 2001 the Saipan Tribune reported:
A Commonwealth judge imposed yesterday a 30-year jail term on convicted murderer Eugene Repeki, junking defense and prosecution pre-sentence recommendations that bordered on extreme ends.

Superior Court Associate Judge Timothy Bellas viewed as inappropriate the government’s proposed 60-year imprisonment and the defense’ suggested ten-year jail time for the defendant.

In rendering a decision, the judge did not count as basis for consideration the unconvicted offenses lodged against the defendant, particularly a pending complaint accusing Mr. Repeki of attacking another security guard...

In an argument, the government insisted the pending complaint against Mr. Repeki be considered, indicating that the accusation somewhat reflects the defendant’s general conduct.

The prosecution painted the defendant as a bully who poses as a danger to the community, especially when intoxicated with alcohol.
In another Tribune article the prosecutors described the murderer who is now back on the streets:
The prosecution had described the victim’s death as "senseless," pinning down Mr. Repeki as the perpetrator of the killing.

Mr. Basa and Mr. Magofna, who issued testimonies against the suspect on trial, gave credence to accusations that Mr. Repeki is guilty of "viciously and brutally" murdering Mr. Valerio, said Mr. Cable.

This, according to the prosecution, only bolstered the allegations made against Mr. Repeki.
Repeki was also involved in another incident with a security guard. Prosecutors recommended 60 years. He was sentenced to only 10 years with five years suspended. He served only three years and seven months of his sentence. What are the "stringent parole conditions" applied to this violent man?

The parole should be viewed as an insult to the victim's family and all who value justice.

Jeffrey Cabrera, Joseph M. Aldan, and Francisco F. Faisao were also paroled.

In 2002 Jeffrey Cabrera was arrested for the violent robbery involving assaulting the store owner. He was charged with aggravated assault and battery, assault with a dangerous weapon, disturbing the peace, and robbery.

In 2007, within months of being released from prison, Cabrera assaulted and robbed a female contract worker to use the money to play poker. Jeffrey Palacios Cabrera was sentenced to 10 years in prison all suspended except for the first five years, with credit for the 102 days he had already served in jail. The AG's Office actually had made a plea agreement with Cabrera that was rejected by Judge Ramon Manglona because of his prior arrest. From the Saipan Tribune:
Manglona said Cabrera is before the court for committing another serious crime within months after being released from prison.

Cabrera, the judge pointed out, committed robbery not long after serving a three-year sentence for the crime of attempted robbery and while on probation.

She cited that the matter is a classic purse snatching case, with the victim fighting back.

Manglona said Cabrera admitted he did take the purse of the woman by violence, having struggled with her for it.

The incident occurred at night when the woman was walking along the road. The victim said the purse contained $300.

“This court found that, given the above facts, the original proposed jail sentence did not adequately account for the severity of this offense and the defendant's criminal history, as well as the message that would be sent out to the community to deter this kind of offense,” Manglona said.

The revised sentence, she said, better serves to deter both Cabrera and others from committing the same offense.

Manglona said after serving the jail term, the defendant will be placed on five years of probation.

She ordered Cabrera to pay $50 in restitution, $100 in court assessment fee and $100 in annual probation fee.

The judge required the defendant to perform 200 hours of community work and referred him to the Community Guidance Center to complete any recommended course of treatment, including gambling addiction.
Did the Parole Board consider this repeat offender's history? I wonder what the judge thinks of his release. He served only 3 years and 7 months of the sentence. Did the Parole Board even look at his previous records? What are his "stringent parole conditions?"

Joseph Matagolai Aldan was reportedly arrested and charged with 2 counts of "illegal possession of a controlled substance" (ice) and with 2 counts of trafficking ice. An undercover law enforcement official bought $300 of ice from Aldan in 2007. The Variety reported that "Aldan served eight months of his five-year sentence, of which three years and six months were suspended." The criminal also had to pay a 2,000 fine, $500 probation fee, and $100 court assessment fee. From the Saipan Tribune:
The Office of the Attorney General charged Aldan with two counts of trafficking of a controlled substance and two counts of illegal possession of a controlled substance.

Aldan and his counsel, chief public defender Adam Hardwicke, signed a plea agreement with the government. Aldan pleaded guilty to one count of illegal possession of a controlled substance. The remaining charges were dismissed.
Francisco F. Faisao was sentenced to five years in prison, all suspended except three years for his involvement in a CUC power disconnection scam. He served less than half of his sentence.

Two others who were paroled on the condition that they leave the commonwealth were Nickson Garry Hartman and Arnel Guiterrez. Hartman was serving 5 years for violating parole and assaulting a female police officer. A condition of his parole was that he leave the CNMI and never return. Previous offenses were robbery, car theft and chase, and burglary.

Arnel Gutierrez was serving time for "beating up his step daughter and pouring butane gas on her. The incident portrays Gutierrez as an extremely violent man:
Gutierrez had just come home after a drinking session with a neighbor when he had a heated confrontation with his common-law wife.

The defendant also allegedly called his stepdaughter names and hit her on the head, prompting an argument between the two that escalated. Gutierrez's wife intervened and stopped him from kicking her daughter.

Threatening to burn the house down, the defendant allegedly went to the kitchen and took a disposable butane canister for a small gas stove. The common-law wife ran outside to a store to call the police.

Gutierrez allegedly sprayed his stepdaughter with the butane gas. As he was reaching into his pocket for what the girl believed to be a lighter, she struggled with him, managing to take away the butane canister.

She hit him with a curtain rod; the defendant kicked her. The stepdaughter also kicked him until he backed off. The victim then ran outside the house.

When the wife came returned, the defendant grabbed a big knife from the kitchen and threatened to kill them and then himself if they call the police. The wife managed to grab the knife and a slingshot that Gutierrez had taken from his stepson's room.
Granting parole and furloughs to prisoners on Saipan appears to be routine. Does any prisoner in the CNMI stay behind bars for their entire sentence? The odds of one of these released criminals committing another crime are high.

What is also interesting about all of this is that the Attorney General who is also the legal counsel for the Parole Board was interviewed by KSPN News and the Variety and he spoke only about the parole of David Tanaka Diaz. He never even mentioned that Diaz was one of seven criminals who were paroled on the same date. What does this say about the Attorney General's character and concern for the public good?

Equally interesting is Board of Parole Chairman Camacho's remark quoted by the Variety: “Please bear in mind that public notices were disseminated to the public to attend all parole hearings timely, but there was lack of participation.”

How can anyone logically explain paroling a murderer, a big time violent drug dealer, and the others who are repeat offenders? Do prosecutors attend the hearings?


Anonymous said...

Lock your doors and don't let your kids out of your sight. Murders, beaters, drug dealers, stealers are now among us. Where do they live? Was that published to? Did the BoP want to publish this so we could actually see the notice? Who saw this notice?

Anonymous said...

hmm rekepi, faisao......hmm

Anonymous said...

What started this pattern of releases? Trading for votes? The AG? Could these paroles have something to do with the exit of so many assistant AGs?

Anonymous said...

I think there should be public notices posted around the villages and in all of the papers for every parole hearing. Camacho must be joking to say they notified the public. It's almost like he blames us for not seeing the notices. Any real chairman would do something if no one from the public sector ever attended and would fix the way of notification. The hearings were not publicized correctly -duh. I am sure people will be on the lookout for "notices" now. I never saw any. Maybe they weren't in the Marianas Variety because if they sent them to that paper to publish they knew someone would write a story about it. They didn't want the public to attend!

Anonymous said...

Prosecutors attend the Board of Parole hearings... and they are held inside DOC. How accessible is that? And how would you like to be the prosecutor opposing Diaz's release when boss Bucky is right there? Should be a no brainer right? I mean, for Bucky.

Camacho and the lot of them are nothing but minions to Ben Ben Fitial. Gee... Rose Ada Hocog? The Governor's SAPLR?

The thing that blows about all this is that they don't ask the victim's families for any input. The Victim Advocate in the AG Criminal Division is asleep at the wheel.... all the federal funding for Victims of Crimes Act and Violence against Women go to waste.

Lack of participation? Excuse me. How about you write: "Attention everyone, convicted drug dealer or robber is asking for release back to the community. Does anyone have a concern about this?"

These jokers in government aren't going to pour water on our heads on a sunny morning and then tell us it is raining!

This is beyond shock.... it is pathetic. Lock our doors and load up your guns if these guys move into the neighborhood.

Anonymous said...

anon 8:25 a.m.

i understand what you mean. your guess is as good as mine.

anon 10:23 a.m.

i totally agree with you.

Anonymous said...

If any one of these rehabilitated guys commits a crime, assaults or murders someone else, this BoP and AG need to accept some responsibility.

Captain said...

You see the same names repeatedly in the papers through the years. Majority are repeat offenders. This useless legislature needs to get a "three strikes law" enacted.
Notices given out by the parole board in the news-media for at least 5 continual working days prior to the hearing.
Victims of the crime(s)should be personally notified of any parole applications along with the attorneys for each side.
But of course this will still be "hidden" for each of the parole hearings.

Anonymous said...

On a another matter, the owner of ladera School is in jail in Korea. Is the school still open?