Mafnas Must Resign

March 22, 2012


The last thing that the CNMI needs is a racist and violent police commissioner. While people are debating the Senate's rejection of the governor's appointees this week, they may also want to question why Ramon C. Mafnas was ever confirmed to lead the DPS.

The Saipan Tribune reported that the Commissioner of the Department of Public Safety has been accused of "threatening to arrest, handcuff, and shoot two security guards and a dive instructor in separate incidents in Marpi."

The victims filed complaints with the F.B.I. and the DPS in February 2012. One security guard was involved in two incidents with Mafnas. The first incident took place at Bird Island in May 2011, ten months ago. The second incident took place at the grotto in September 2011. A second security guard experienced an incident at Suicide Cliff.

Reportedly two investigators, Patrick Sablan and Jeffrey Norita are investigating the case. The governor's Angel claimed that he was not aware of the incidents. Yesterday the Tribune broke the story without a bi-line. (Perhaps the reporter fears retaliation from Mafnas?)

There were two incidents that one guard reported. The first incident took place at Bird Island. The Tribune reported:
The driver of the vehicle, whose uniform's nametag had the name Mafnas, approached the security guard at his work post. At the time, Mafnas was with several officers.

As the guard was greeting the tourists at the area, Mafnas approached him and asked him if he was doing his job. Mafnas allegedly told the guard to stop greeting the tourist because he is not a police officer and that this is not the Philippines, Bangladesh, or Nepal.

Mafnas told the guard that his job is to log down all license plates of vehicles that arrive at Bird Island lookout and to stay only in the guardhouse.

As the guard tried to explain his duties and assignment, the DPS commissioner allegedly told him to keep quiet and that he does not need his explanation.
Heaven forbid a guard be friendly to tourists!

The second incident took place in September 2011. The same guard was posted at the Gotto. Mafnas showed up and asked the guard about a car in the parking lot that was owned by a Korean dive instructor. The Saipan Tribune reported:
When the Korean arrived after a few minutes, Mafnas approached and inquired about his license plate sticker. The Korean explained that someone stole his sticker, but Mafnas told him to be quiet.

Mafnas introduced himself to the Korean as the DPS commissioner and that he (Korean) does not respect him. Mafnas allegedly showed the Korean a handcuff and asked him if he wants to be arrested.

The commissioner also ordered the Korean to show him his driver's license and vehicle registration. The Korean instructed one of his friends to bring the documents from inside the vehicle's glove compartment.

The diving instructor was surprised when Mafnas allegedly approached and shouted, “What you think, I'm playing around?” The commissioner again allegedly took out the handcuff and asked the Korean if he wants to be arrested.

The Korean begged Mafnas not to arrest him and promised that he will put the sticker on the license plate. The diving instructor later learned from the guard that it was Mafnas, the DPS commissioner. 
That same day, the Korean called the FBI and spoke to a special agent, who told the Korean he would call Mafnas to resolve the matter. The Korean asked the special agent not to call Mafnas and just forget the incident.
Really? Forget the incident? Let the Commissioner of DPS bully and threaten the public? Bullies need to be stopped or they continue to bully. Like the elected official who threatened a community member not to f ___with his bill or he'd f___ him up? That too was reported to the FBI. Like elected leaders who threaten to withhold funds from other islands because they didn't get their way? No one should "forget" incidents of bullying or abuse of power. All incidents should be reported to authorities and made public. How many cases that were not reported to the press would be pursued by the police or other officials? Bullies need to be exposed and stopped.

The second guard who was threatened by Mafnas was posted at Suicide Cliff. Mafnas asked the guard why he "was just standing there. The Saipan Tribune reported:
The guard asked him for his name and Mafnas replied that he is the DPS commissioner.

Mafnas told the guard to move his car that was parked at the southeast portion of Suicide Cliff. Mafnas also asked the guard for his driver's license. As the guard was trying to explain why he parked his car in the parking area, the commissioner kept telling him to shut up and be quiet.

Mafnas allegedly warned the guard to move his car or he would arrest him, handcuff him, then shoot him. The commissioner allegedly continued telling the guard if he wants to be arrested or shot.
Why didn't the guard report this immediately to the DPS and press? Because a climate of fear exists in the CNMI. It existed when I lived there and it continues today. Corrupt, bullying officials, threatening employers and a few outspoken racist residents have frightened nonresidents into thinking that they will lose their jobs or worse if they report unpaid wages or abuses. Such was the case with the second guard. The Saipan Tribune reported:
The guard told the detectives investigating the complaint that he was afraid so he did not file a formal complaint with DPS for fear of retaliation. The guard told the detectives he was very disturbed by Mafnas and scared for his life.
Mafnas should resign or be removed from his position.  A police commissioner should be protecting the people (all of the people of every race), not threatening them. Threatening to shoot a person is a crime. He should be immediately arrested.

Rise up and demand that your civil rights be enforced or next time it may be you on the bad side of Mafnas or another CNMI bully; next time he may pull the trigger. Stop this injustice now!

UPDATE:


Ferdie de la Torre from the Saipan Tribune reports that the newspapers received a "complaint from a motorist who also narrated his “encounter” with Mafnas. Saipan Tribune opted not to write the allegations in the meantime until Mafnas has stated his side."

Mafnas claims that the security guards made false accusations. I doubt that these guards would make up allegations against the commissioner. What would they have to gain?

KSPN News also covered this story. The reporters exposed that Mafnas personally interviewed witnesses in the Romero homicide case and refused to release the information to investigators.

The Marianas Variety reports that at least 80% of the CNMI Department of Public Safety (DPS) personnel have signed a petition to remove Commissioner Ramon C. Mafnas from office "due to his bad attitude and abusive behavior."

Not only did he rage at security guards posted at CNMI tourists sites and a dive instructor, but according to the Marianas Variety he also:
  • accused firefighters of setting recent fire to collect overtime 
  • shouted at and threatened to terminate Bureau of Motor Vehicle employees
  • was accused of tampering with a witness in the Romero case

14 comments:

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Wendy Doromal said...

I deleted the comment above because it suggested a retaliatory action. By rise up I mean speak out, peacefully demonstrate and demand an end to discrimination against foreign workers.

Anonymous said...

Mafnas is a bully with a vicious temper. Half Chamorro and half Korean Mafnas most likely had a tough child hood and now has the power to push others around at will. While working at NMC he punched a Korean student. No charges were filed. The AG has a duty to investigate these incidents and press charges. If the prosecutor presses charges he will be probably be fired immediately and replaced. Mafnas is NOT a policeman. He has not been through any type of police training.

Anonymous said...

I hope that by posting my opinions based on what's going on right now here in CNMI which some people called (paradise)the US will do something to prove that they (US) are no longer same as before, that they still believed that NO ONE IS ABOVE THE LAW not even the PRESIDENT and that they are not blind, deaf and mute to not to see, hear and talk and do something in order to put and end to what's been going on here regarding corruption, human rights violations, racial discriminations. I strongly believe that you don't allow and will not allow these things to happen in US soil.

Anonymous said...

Look a bit further into his history as a bully. In 2000 he was angered by a census taker covering Tanapag. For no reason he beat the man nearly to death with a 2X4. The man lingered in CHC for a long time with severe brain injury. Eventually he was flown back to the PI. The man is now almost a vegetable and his family will need to care for him for the rest of his life. There was some sort of investigation into this incident but Mafnas got off with no charges put on him. There are more anecdotal bully incidents in the past 6 years while Mafnas was a special advisor read body guard to the Governor. Some occurred in various bars in Garapan. This man is dangerous to whomever he takes a dislike to. There is unconfirmed gossip out there that he has tried to force internet servers to give him IP addresses of people that oppose Fitial and himself while under the cover of DPS police investigations.

Anonymous said...

8:49 The FBI should investigate the IP address allegations if someone comes forward.

It's not your money! said...

Every one of the senators who voted to confirm him knew all of this prior information, and it should have been enough to disqualify Mafnas from ever getting near his office. What about the allegations that he stole all the assets from his brother's estate? How much do they need? How spineless can they be? Now we must all reap what they have sown in their cowardice. The island way of not confronting people with unpleasant issues is what will ultimately destroy the CNMI.

Anonymous said...

I did not know that Foreign nationals could be employed as Census takers which is paid for by the Feds.
If this actually happened (Employing a foreign national)here then it would seem that there was nobody available that could read and write and comprehend on how to make out the forms.
This is interesting, I also must have missed that encounter concerning Mafnas or I might have been off island during that encounter.
I am not saying it did not happen as I have heard so many things about him and others that are downplayed.

Wendy Doromal said...

2:47 Exactly what I was thinking. I could find nothing on such an alleged incident, but maybe it was not in the press. This is the 2nd time such a comment was posted on this site.

8:49 Can you give us more information? Was a police report filed? Do you know the name of the victim?

Anonymous said...

2:47 PM
Not sure of the census taker's status. I do know this event has haunted Ray for years. When questioned about it he always states "I was cleared of all charges end of conversation."

Anonymous said...

If he's not a policeman he have no right to wear a police uniform because he just destroying the image of all the cops in cnmi

Green Cards for All! said...

It's not your money! said...

What about the allegations that he stole all the assets from his brother's estate? How much do they need? How spineless can they be?

I generally respect your comments, but you should know better than to repeat rank gossip. That allegation was completely refuted in a court of law, something that you should understand.

Having been victimized by misuse of freedom of speech yourself, I would think you would know better than to perpetuate such evil against others.

The CNMI DPS is a cesspool of petty and major corruption. We are fortunate to have someone not afraid to ride herd on this crew.

I never saw you volunteer to be DPS Commissioner. Perhaps you should do so in six years when in a financial position to do so.

Anonymous said...

8:29 Why would anyone volunteer to lead the DPS? It's so corrupt. I think you should volunteer. You seem to think it's a good idea. See how far you get because here every position is a political appointment. Do you kiss a**? If you do, then apply. Funny you should defend Mafnas, Must be a Fitialite or one of the great father's loyal subjects!

It's not your money! said...

I've been asked if I wanted to be AG, or a judge, but not DPS Commissioner. I think the commissioner should be a police officer, by the way. In any case, I'd never get the nod, because I had two conditions before I'd agree to consider the job: (1) I would be totally free to hire, fire, and transfer as I see fit to weed out the deadwood, corrupt and incompetent, and promote the meritorious; and (2) if you ever ask me to lay off a family member or political supporter, I open a case on you.

By the way, just because your court opponent can't prove you did something doesn't mean you didn't do it. That's true in civil court and criminal court.