IPI to pay past dues in sexual harassment suit

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Ray Yumul, the interim chief executive officer of Imperial Pacific International (CNMI) LLC, said that IPI expects to pay off the past due balance under the consent decree with the U.S Equal Employment Opportunity Commission to purge itself of contempt in the case involving a former IPI VIP hostess claiming sexual harassment.

According to Yumul, IPI CNMI is expecting a wire transfer of approximately $180,000 from IPI Holdings Ltd., its mother company based in Hong Kong, no later than this week.

The funds, Yumul said, will pay off roughly $75,000 of the past due balance in the consent decree. IPI will used the remaining funds to make payments on other court judgments, including Xerox Corp., Banes, Horey, Berman & Miller, and other IPI creditors.

Ray Yumul

Yumul

“We received notice from Hong Kong that a wire remittance from Hong Kong Holdings to Hong Kong IPI CNMI. That’s in process. Approximately $180,000 is being made available to pay these cases. There may be a little extra. But I’m expecting no less than $180,000 just to settle the pending ones. We expect that this week. Hong Kong is aware of all the order to show cause cases and the amounts that were past due and needed to be made current so they are sending an amount that should cover these cases,” he said.

Last week, the U.S. District Court for the NMI found IPI in contempt anew for noncompliance with the consent decree to pay former employees who claim they were sexually harassed while they were working for the company.

Chief Judge Ramona Manglona found IPI in contempt for failure to pay the monthly payments for August and September 2021 as stated in the consent decree between IPI and the U.S EEOC.

Manglona ordered IPI Holdings, Ltd., mother company of IPI CNMI, to pay the balance no later than Friday, Oct. 29, for the balance outstanding, including daily per diem and interest pursuant to the consent decree. Payments must be made directly to the claimants or EEOC.

According to Saipan Tribune archives, EEOC sued IPI on Sept. 24, 2019, for sexual harassment and unfair employment practices on behalf of a former VIP hostess and other female employees. EEOC alleged that IPI subjected the claimants to unwelcome physical and verbal sexual harassment by male patrons.

IPI denied the allegations and asked the court to rule in its favor and dismiss the complaint with prejudice.

In April 2021, IPI agreed to settle the claims and resolve the lawsuit. It entered into a consent decree that was approved by the court on April 27, 2021.

Kimberly B. Esmores | Reporter
Kimberly Albiso Bautista has covered a wide range of news beats, including the community, housing, crime, and more. She now covers sports for the Saipan Tribune. Contact her at kimberly_bautista@saipantribune.com.

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