IPI barred from selling or transferring assets

IPI has paid all its payroll

U.S. District Court for the NMI Chief Judge Ramona V. Manglona granted yesterday a contractor’s request for an order to prohibit Imperial Pacific International (CNMI) LLC from selling or transferring assets.

At the motions hearing, Manglona asked Colin M. Thompson, who is counsel for contractor Pacific Rim Land Development LLC, to draft the order for the court’s approval.

When asked for comments, IPI general counsel Michael W. Dotts said that Pacific Rim sought to have all of the gaming equipment and furniture sold, but Manglona did not agree, that selling IPI’s vehicles should be enough to satisfy the balance of the $6.9 million judgment.

Dotts said that, until the judgment is paid or a bond is put in place, IPI cannot sell or mortgage any of its property, but hopefully that prohibition will not be in place long.

The lawyer pointed out that IPI’s appeal is still pending.

He said IPI hopes to have a bond in place to cover the amount of the judgment in time to prevent the vehicles from being sold.

Dotts said there is, however, some good news.

“IPI paid its payroll and all the past payrolls that had not been paid as a result of the writ emptying the bank accounts have now been caught up,” he said.

At the hearing yesterday, Manglona also granted Pacific Rim’s request to gain access to IPI’s casino cage subject to the Commonwealth Casino Commission’s restrictions.

According to the minutes of the hearing, the judge denied without prejudice the request for an order regarding removal of the crane at the construction site of Imperial Pacific Resort in Garapan.

Manglona granted Pacific Rim’s request to order that IPI’s vehicles be maintained and insured.

Manglona ordered IPI to identify person or persons with sufficient information to respond.

She informed IPI that sanctions will be imposed should the information not be tendered.

The judge granted Pacific Rim’s request for attorney’s fees and costs for filing the motion to compel.

Pacific Rim was given until Aug. 7, 2020, to file the request for fees and costs. IPI general counsel Michael Dotts was given no later than Aug. 14 to respond.

In a separate order yesterday, Manglona directed the clerk to release the funds received from Pacific American Title Inc. to Pacific Rim in the amount of $100 from the court’s Treasury Registry Fund.

The court earlier granted Pacific Rim’s application for a writ of execution on Pacific American Title Inc.

The court issue the writ last June 15, as well as a notice to IPI regarding its rights.

To date, Manglona said, IPI has not moved for a hearing or filed any other requests regarding this writ.

Pacific American Title tendered $100 to the court, and the U.S. Treasury completed the processing of those funds.

Last April 27, Manglona entered a judgment in favor of Pacific Rim in the amount of $5.65 million against IPI for breach of promissory note.

Last May 26, Manglona amended the judgment to incorporate pre-judgment interest and attorneys’ fees. The clerk then on May 28 entered an amended judgment in the amount of $6.9 million plus post-judgment interest.

Dotts earlier stated that IPI has satisfied about $3.1 million of the judgment following the court’s first and second writs of execution, but the $6.9 million has not been satisfied in full.

Pacific Rim is suing IPI and five unnamed alleged co-conspirators, claiming it has completed or completed the agreed-upon construction work on Sept. 30, 2018.

IPI brought counterclaims against Pacific Rim for promissory fraud, fraud in the inducement as to the promissory note, violation of Consumer Protection Act, and breach of contract.

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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