Charge vs co-defendant in false statement in passport application case dismissed


The federal court on Wednesday granted the U.S. government’s motion to dismiss without prejudice an indictment charging a woman for aiding a mother who provided false statement in an application for a U.S. passport for her minor daughter.

U.S. District Court for the NMI Chief Judge Ramona V. Manglona dismissed without prejudice the indictment charging Yan Juan Hu Taitano with false statement in application for U.S. passport.

Dismissal without prejudice means the U.S. government may re-file the case against Taitano in the future.

The judge issued the order following assistant U.S. attorney Russell H. Lorfing’s motion to dismiss the indictment.

Lorfing said the U.S. government cannot assure the presence of an essential witness at trial.

“Without the testimony of this essential witness, the government submits that it would not be able to prove its case beyond a reasonable doubt,” Lorfing said.

Last June 27, Manglona slapped Taitano’s co-defendant, Yu Zhou, with a one-year probation sentence for providing false statement in an application for a U.S. passport for her minor daughter.

Manglona also ordered Yu Zou to pay a $5,000 fine and $100 in court assessment fee, among other conditions.

At a change of plea hearing last June 17, Zou waived the required investigation by the U.S. Probation for a presentence investigation report due to her eagerness to return back to her very young children in China.

At the sentencing hearing, Manglona ordered Zou’s passport and her child’s passport to be returned to her.

Lorfing then disclosed that the U.S. government had just served subpoena on Zou in order to secure her testimony for the upcoming trial of her co-defendant, Taitano, in this case.

According to the indictment, on Dec. 3, 2014 on Saipan, Zou and Taitano knowingly made a false statement in the application for a U.S. passport for the minor child.

In the application, Zou, allegedly aided by Taitano, stated that she had never been married, “which statements she then and there well knew to be false.”

Ferdie De La Torre | Reporter
Ferdie Ponce de la Torre is a senior reporter of Saipan Tribune. He has a bachelor’s degree in journalism and has covered all news beats in the CNMI. He is a recipient of the CNMI Supreme Court Justice Award. Contact him at

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