Ex-Joeten cashier arrested for allegedly stealing money and taking items


Police arrested on Friday a woman who, as then a cashier at Joeten Shopping Center in Susupe, allegedly stole money from the store and took items that a customer forgot.

Marlena Bonita Taitano Castro, 20, was arrested for theft.

At a hearing yesterday, Superior Court Associate Judge Joseph N. Camacho imposed a $10,000 cash bail and set the preliminary hearing for June 29 at 9am.

The Office of the Public Defender was appointed as counsel for Castro.

Police detective Daniel T. Joab stated in his report that on Feb. 20, 2015, a manager at Joeten Shopping Center in Susupe called the police about a theft case.

Joab said the responding police officer learned that Castro as a then-cashier at Joeten was caught taking money from the store during transactions with customers.

Security staff apparently caught Castro on surveillance camera several times receiving money from customers, punching the items in the register but deleting the transactions.

Castro allegedly had been taking money from the store from the date she was hired to the day of her termination on Feb. 11, 2015. There was no mention of the date she was hired.

Joab said police conducted a follow-up investigation last May 11, during which the Joeten manager provided a police detective 83 surveillance footages of Castro’s stealing while being a cashier.

The detective was also provided a list of amount of items that were not scanned on the cash register, transaction that was voided, and money worth $2,589.93 that was taken.

During a May 12 interview with police, Castro allegedly admitted to committing the theft incidents.

The detective played the 83 recorded surveillance footages before Castro, who allegedly admitted to what she did.

Police said Castro admitted to keeping the customer’s money, not ringing up (recording) the sale, taking money, voiding ticket, giving free items to customer, payment that did not go into cash drawer, taking items that customer forgot, and pocketing cash.

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 ferdie_delatorre@Saipantribune.com
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