Judge orders Hocog to appear at contempt hearing


Superior Court Judge Pro Tem Michael J. Bordallo has ordered Senate President Victor B. Hocog to appear in court next month for a hearing on a motion filed by a Rota corporation that seeks to hold him in contempt for allegedly disobeying a court order that dates back to 1999.

According to court records, Rota Merchandising Corp. filed at least four motions to show cause against Hocog, while Superior Court issued three orders to show cause against the senator.

When asked for comment last week, Hocog said things are already being ironed out with the other party’s counsel, Michael White, as of Tuesday.

On why the case has been dragging on in court since 1999, the Senate president said, “There’s some misunderstanding on that…so we already [took] care of that.”

The order to show cause hearing was supposed to commence last Friday, Jan. 16, but Hocog and his counsel did not appear in court.

White appeared as counsel for Rota Merchandising Corp.

Saipan Tribune learned that the Senate president was off-island at that time and communicated with White regarding the hearing that day.

This prompted Bordallo, who conducted the telephonic hearing from Guam, to reset the order to show cause hearing to Feb. 18, 2015, at 10am.

In September 2014, CNMI Supreme Court Associate Justice John A. Manglona appointed Bordallo to preside over the Rota Merchandising Corp. lawsuit against Hocog after all Superior Court judges recused from the matter.

According to the original lawsuit, Rota Merchandising Corp. sued Hocog and V’s Corp. in September 1999 for allegedly refusing to pay $125,043.86 worth of construction materials.

Fifteen years later, on May 31, 2014, White filed a motion to show cause, saying Hocog still owes $32,064 plus interest as of Jan. 15, 2014, and that the senator made the last payment on May 16, 2011.

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

Related Posts

Disclaimer: Comments are moderated. They will not appear immediately or even on the same day. Comments should be related to the topic. Off-topic comments would be deleted. Profanities are not allowed. Comments that are potentially libelous, inflammatory, or slanderous would be deleted.