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Thursday, April 17, 2014

OAG files criminal case vs police sergeant for allegedly stealing utility services

The Office of the Attorney General has charged Police Sgt. Vicente O. Tagabuel and another person for allegedly stealing utility services.

Assistant attorney general Russell Lorfing filed an information charging Tagabuel with one count of theft of utility services.

Lorfing said that, on April 15 to 27, 2011 on Saipan, Tagabuel “intended to obtain utility services for his benefit or for the benefit of another without paying the full lawful amount.”

Lorfing said Tagabuel “knowingly committed the theft of utility services totaling in the approximate amount of $196.70 by passing the Commonwealth Utilities Corp. meter.”

Tagabuel was not arrested as the OAG only served him with penal summons to appear in the Superior Court to answer the case on Dec. 12, 2011 at 9am.

Saipan Tribune yesterday tried but failed to get comments from Sgt. Tagabuel, who is assigned with the Department of Public Safety’s summons and warrant office.

Tagabuel was among three police officers whose hiring and promotion were challenged in a lawsuit filed by Police Sgt. James C. Deleon Guerrero and 25 other police officers.

Meanwhile, Lorfing filed a separate information charging Eloise J. Castro with one count of theft of utility services.

Lorfing said that, on May 3 to July 6, 2011 on Saipan, Castro “intended to obtain utility services for her benefit or for the benefit of another without paying the full lawful amount.”

The prosecutor said Castro “knowingly committed the theft of utility services totaling in the approximate amount of $690.92 by passing the CUC meter.”

Castro was also not arrested as the OAG only summoned her to appear and answer the case in court on Dec. 12, 2011 at 9am.

Last week, the OAG filed an amended information to include Joanna C. Pai’s mother as co-defendant in the case over the alleged stealing of power utility services over $51,000.

Assistant attorney general Shelli Neal filed the first amended information that charged Mrs. Pai and her mother, Columba I. Chong, with theft of utility services.

In Mrs. Pai’s motion to dismiss, attorney Rexford Kosack stated that the only reason Mrs. Pai has been charged is that she is married to Public Auditor Michael Pai who has attracted the ire of attorney general Edward T. Buckingham.

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