Judge Manglona orders release of $224,548


U.S. District Court for the NMI Chief Judge Ramona V. Manglona ordered the clerk of court yesterday to release the $224,548.07 that were disputed by some shareholders of a company and dragged a bank to a lawsuit.

Manglona directed the clerk of court to release $20,000 to First Hawaiian Bank for its reasonable attorneys’ fees, and the remaining $204,548.07 to Universal Group Development Inc. through its president, Wanzhong Yu.

Manglona dismissed the lawsuit and all claims and cross-claims and directed the clerk to close the case.

The judge issued the release of the money and the dismissal of the case at the parties’ request.

The underlying issue in this case, the true ownership of 440,000 shares of Universal Group’s stock and the $224,548.07 has been resolved in favor of Yu as its president.

In April 2015, Manglona ordered First Hawaiian Bank to deposit with the court the disputed $224,548.07 in Universal Group’s maximizer savings account.

Manglona issued the order after the parties in the lawsuit signed a stipulation in which they agreed to deposit funds with the court.

FHB, Universal Group, and Yu, through their respective counsels, entered the agreement to deposit the money.

Last March, Manglona issued a default judgment and awarded Yu $125,699.60 in damages.

Yu alleged that he was detained in China for 22 months, caused by political influence exerted by his former business partners on Saipan.

Manglona issued a default judgment in favor of Yu and against Mingnan Jin and Jinwei Guo.

Universal Group, through its then-counsel Samuel Mok, sued Yu for conversion and First Hawaiian Bank for breach of contract.

Universal Group alleged that Yu and the bank have blocked the company from gaining access to its $225,000 of its own funds from a business savings account.

Yu, through counsel Mark Scoggins, filed a cross-claim, alleging he was wrongfully detained in China for 22 months, caused by political influence exerted by his former business partners. Yu named Jin and Guo as defendants in his cross-claim.

Jin and Guo were then claiming as the officers and directors of Universal Group and that Guo is now the sole shareholder.

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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