FOR SEXUAL ASSAULT OF A MINOR

Ex-DPS chief arrested

Deleon Guerrero, Concepcion allowed to post $25K, $10K cash bail, property bond

Special assistant for Homeland Security and Emergency Management James C. Deleon Guerrero was arrested on Friday for allegedly sexually assaulting a then-15-year-old girl while he was commissioner of the Department of Public Safety in 2013.

Deleon Guerrero and his co-defendant, Police Officer 3 Jesse S. Concepcion, were both taken on Friday before Superior Court Associate Judge Joseph N. Camacho for bail hearing on charges of sexual assault in the first degree and sexual assault in the second degree.

The Office of the Attorney General hinted that more charges such as misconduct in public office may be filed against the defendants.

Camacho granted the defendants’ request to modify the $100,000 cash bail that Associate Judge Kenneth L. Govendo earlier imposed in issuing the arrest warrant.

Camacho allowed the 44-year-old Deleon Guerrero and the 45-year-old Concepcion to post $25,000 cash bail and $10,000 cash bail plus property bond, respectively.

Camacho found Deleon Guerrero’s wife, Karen Deleon Guerrero, suitable to serve as his third party custodian.

Camacho found Concepcion’s brother, Ignacio Concepcion, suitable to serve as third party custodian for the police officer.

The judge imposed strict conditions in modifying the bail such as placing the defendants on house arrest and having no contact with minors without the presence of the third party custodians.

After the bail hearing yesterday afternoon, Concepcion was in tears as he hugged his tearful wife, who he just married in 2014. Deleon Guerrero’s wife was also in tears in court.

Preliminary hearing will be on April 19 at 1:30pm. Arraignment will be on April 25 at 9am.

Attorneys Joaquin Torres and Richard Pierce appeared as private counsel for Deleon Guerrero and Concepcion, respectively.

Assistant attorneys general Matthew Baisley and Shannon Foley appeared for the government.

Govendo sealed the case on Thursday following the government’s request considering that at the time, Deleon Guerrero was in Guam and was believed arriving on Saipan on Saturday, April 16.

On Friday morning, Baisley requested to unseal the matter during the bail hearing of Concepcion, who was arrested on Thursday morning. The judge granted the motion.

Deleon Guerrero, however, arrived on Saipan from Guam on Friday morning and was arrested on his way to surrendering to authorities.

Investigators from the Attorney General’s Investigation Division, accompanied by Federal Bureau of Investigation special agents, arrested Concepcion at the DPS impounding lot in Lower Base on Thursday morning.

AG Investigation Division investigator Vicente Boki Babauta stated in his report that in June to July 2013, while Deleon Guerrero was DPS commissioner, he engaged in sexual intercourse with the then-15-year-old girl on two different occasions in a DPS T-100 truck at a secluded San Antonio beach site.

Babauta said that in June to July 2013, Concepcion, while a DPS police officer, engaged in sexual intercourse with the same minor girl on several occasions in a DPS T-100 truck at the San Antonio beach site.

It was Concepcion who allegedly offered to find a girl for Deleon Guerrero for the purpose of having sex as the commissioner’s wife was off-island tending to her sick father.

Both Deleon Guerrero and Concepcion allegedly admitted to an FBI special agent during interview that they had sex with the same girl.

Deleon Guerrero allegedly stated that he did not know then that the girl was a minor because of his severe vision loss.

Babauta said that on July 16, 2013, a concerned citizen reported a sexual abuse of a minor to DPS, but due to the nature of the complaint, the FBI was notified and took part in the investigation.

Babauta said the joint investigation led to the arrest and conviction of some suspects who are now serving sentences for federal charges in federal prison for sexual exploitation and human trafficking.

On Sept. 24, 2015, the case was forwarded to the AG Investigative Division to pursue several individuals on local charges.

On March 10, 2016, AGID initiated a joint investigation with the FBI into the matter.

Babauta said that on July 18, 2013, DPS police detective Melissa Bauleong met and interviewed the 15-year-old girl, who stated that she ran away from home.

In June 2013, the girl moved in with Annette N. Basa at her residence in Afetnas, San Antonio. While staying in Afetnas, Basa introduced the girl to a man named “Ton” for the purpose of engaging in sexual intercourse.

The girl first met “Ton” in June 2013. She stated that one day she went to DPS and saw “Ton” in uniform. She later found out that “Ton” was just a fake name as his real name is Jesse Concepcion and is a police officer.

Between June 2013 to July 2013, Concepcion had sex with the girl on several different occasions in a black DPS T-100 truck at the San Antonio beach site.

On July 30, 2013, Bauleong interviewed Concepcion, who confirmed that he first met the girl in June 2013, and admitted he had sex with the girl on four different occasions at the San Antonio beach area.

FBI special agent Haejun Park interviewed the girl on July 23, 2013.

Concepcion admitted that Basa introduced him to approximately seven girls over a period of several years.

The girl estimated that she had sex with Concepcion on 20 occasions and that on two occasions, he brought a friend and that both had sex with her.

Concepcion drove several different vehicles to the meeting, including a black Toyota T-100 with dark tinted windows, a purple jeep, a black jeep, and a blue convertible- like sports car.

During an interview with Park on Sept. 3, 2013, Concepcion admitted that he first met the girl in June 2013 and that he had sex with her on four different occasions at a San Antonio beach site.

Concepcion further stated that on the second and third encounters with the girl, he brought his friend, then DPS commissioner Deleon Guerrero, and they both had sex with her.

During Park’s interview with Deleon Guerrero on March 18, 2014, Deleon Guerrero admitted he had sex with the girl at the San Antonio beach site on two separate occasions when his wife was off-island tending to her sick father.

Deleon Guerrero stated that it was Concepcion who offered to find girl for him for the purpose of having sex.

Deleon Guerrero said that on the first occasion, Concepcion picked him up in a black T-100 truck and they drove to the San Antonio beach site.

Deleon Guerrero stated that on that occasion, he had oral sex with the girl in the truck’s bed.

Deleon Guerrero said that on the second occasion, Concepcion picked him up in the same truck and drove to the same beach, where they took turns having sex with the girl in the truck.

Deleon Guerrero explained that he did not know then that he had sex with a minor girl on those two occasions because of his severe vision loss.

Babauta said Deleon Guerrero believed that Concepcion knew the girl was underage but he lied to him.

At the bail modification hearing, Torres proposed a bail of $25,000 cash plus property bond for Deleon Guerrero.

Torres said Deleon Guerrero is not a flight risk and does not pose danger to the community.

Torres said Deleon Guerrero was an outstanding police officer for several years, served as DPS commissioner, and now as HSEM special assistant.

Torres said there is no confession of Deleon Guerrero whatsoever.

Pierce proposed a $10,000 cash bail and 25,000 square meters of property bond for Concepcion.

Pierce said the government is suggesting that it’s a sex predator case, but the affidavit was not telling that.

Pierce said Concepcion is not a flight risk and does not pose danger to the community.

Pierce said the FBI, the U.S. Attorney’s Office, and the Office of the Attorney General, knew about this matter since 2013 and if Concepcion poses a danger to the community, why was he given a gun.

“This is Johnny come lately,” Pierce said.

Assistant attorney general Foley said the government opposes any kind of reduction to the $100,000 cash bail for both defendants because of the nature of the case as well as their evidence.

Foley pointed out that they have evidence of defendants’ confessions.

Foley said sexual assault of a minor is very complicated case and that the court should exercise utmost caution to protect other minors.

With respect to Deleon Guerrero, Foley said the wife can’t check the defendant periodically because of her work schedule at Best Sunshine International, Ltd.

The prosecutor also noted Deleon Guerrero’s position of authority during the allegations.

Regarding Concepcion, Foley noted there are three children living in the compound where the defendant’s brother stays.

Foley said according to Babauta’s affidavit, Concepcion was soliciting sex as it was him who offered to give a girl to Deleon Guerrero to have sex.

Foley said the allegations in this case are serious and egregious.

In explaining briefly the bail issue, Camacho said the law requires that bail shall be such to insure the presence of the defendant in future court proceedings.

Camacho said the court shall take into account the nature and circumstances of the charges, the weight of the evidence against the defendant, financial ability, and character of the defendant.

He said for cause shown, the law allows for the bail to be increased, decreased, or modified.

Ferdie De La Torre | Reporter
Ferdie Ponce de la Torre is a veteran journalist who has covered all news beats in the CNMI. Born in Lilo-an, Cebu City in the Philippines, De la Torre graduated from the University of Santo Tomas with a bachelor’s degree in journalism. He is a recipient of many commendations and awards, including the CNMI Judiciary’s prestigious Justice Award for his over 10 years of reporting on the judiciary’s proceedings and decisions. Contact him at ferdie_delatorre@saipantribune.com

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