Federal Bureau of Investigation agents arrested on Saturday acting CNMI Division of Fish and Wildlife director Raymond Borja Roberto, who allegedly paid three minor girls to have sex with him.
Roberto, 40, also allegedly allowed a woman to videotape him having sex with one of the girls in a room in Garapan. The woman allegedly paid him $1,000 to make the sexually explicit video.
The girl was one of the two minors that firefighter Richard S. Benavente allegedly also had sex with. All three minors involved were 15 years old when the sexual conducts happened, according to the FBI.
Roberto was taken to the U.S. District Court for the NMI yesterday for his initial appearance on charges of coercion and enticement. Chief Judge Ramona V. Manglona granted the U.S. government’s motion to unseal the case.
Roberto appeared with his lawyer, Joaquin Torres. Assistant U.S. attorney Rami Badawy represented the U.S. government.
For now, Roberto remains detained pending future proceedings.
His detention hearing will be on Sept. 6 at 2:30pm. Preliminary hearing will be on Sept. 17 at 9am.
FBI special agent Haejun Park stated in his affidavit that the investigation began on July 16, 2013, when the Department of Public Safety received a tip through the Crime Stoppers Program about the sexual abuse of a minor.
Park said the tipster also emailed a video file that depicted 43-year-old firefighter Benavente having sex with the minor.
Benavente and the woman who allegedly supplied the girls, Annette Nakatsukasa Basa, were recently arrested by FBI agents for alleged exploitation and sex trafficking of two female minors.
Park said further investigation showed that Roberto, the acting DFW director, used his cell phone on several occasions to arrange meetings with one of the girls so that they could have sex, for which he paid her cash.
Park said that during his interview with one of the girls, she disclosed that she began having sex with Roberto on the same day she ran away from home in March 2013.
Park said the girl told him that she had sex with Roberto at a motel in Gualo Rai about 10 different times. Roberto also allegedly had sex with the girl at his house on Airport Road and at a farm next to the Benavente Apartments in As Lito.
On at least one occasion at the same motel in Gualo Rai, Roberto also allegedly had sex with two other 15-year-old girls.
On another occasion, Roberto allegedly brought the first girl to a room inside a building in Garapan, where she met an unidentified Chinese woman.
After Roberto and the girl finished having sex, he allegedly told her that the Chinese woman filmed them and paid him $1,000 for the video. The girl claimed that Roberto gave her $100 for this encounter.
Park said the girl admitted that Roberto paid her between $40 and $150 for each sexual encounter.
Roberto allegedly used the name “Jerald” in his cell phone and would text the girl when he wanted to meet her for sex.
Park said the last time the girl had sex with Roberto was in early July 2013 at the farm where he paid her $40.
Park said that in his interview with the other girl, the minor disclosed that “Jerald” picked her up and two other minor girls at store in Kagman and brought them to a motel where he allegedly engaged in oral sex with her and later had sex with the third girl. Afterward, “Jerald” gave each of the three girls $100.
Park said in his interview with the third girl, she recalled that she met “Jerald” during the Flame Tree Arts Festival in April 2013. The girl later identified “Jerald” from a photograph as Roberto.
Park said the girl stated that Roberto picked her up and two other minor girls in Kagman and drove them to a motel where he had sex with her. He then gave her $300, of which she gave $100 to the other girl.
Park said his review of records from the motel indicate that an individual driving a vehicle with a license plate number registered to Roberto paid for rooms at the motel on 12 different occasions from March 24, 2013, to Aug. 6, 2013.