CUC staff gets 10-day prison term for cutting power line


A Commonwealth Utilities Corp. employee was ordered to start serving last Friday a 10-day prison term for criminal mischief for unlawfully cutting down a CUC power line last year.

Oscar Babauta Jr., 34, pleaded guilty to criminal mischief.

Superior Court Associate Judge David A. Wiseman sentenced Babauta to one-year imprisonment, all suspended except for 10 days.

After serving the prison term, Babauta will be placed on supervised probation for one year. He was required to pay restitution to CUC, complete 100 hours of community service, and pay a $25 court assessment fee, plus probation fee.

The government was ordered to submit the request for restitution on or before Dec. 11, 2015.

According to the factual basis of the plea agreement, Babauta intentionally damaged another person’s property by cutting down a power line belonging to CUC on April 17, 2014, on Saipan.

Acting chief prosecutor Chester Hinds said yesterday he has no idea why the defendant cut the power line.

Assistant public defender Michael Sato served as counsel for Babauta.

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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