Jurors start deliberations in Flores’ lawsuit

Federal jurors started deliberating yesterday afternoon in the lawsuit filed by Derron Gerard Flores against the MUFG Union Bank over a $200,000 time certificate of deposit that his late father purchased in 1993.

The jurors will continue their deliberations on Monday.

At yesterday’s closing arguments, attorney Juan T. Lizama, counsel for Flores, blamed Union Bank for its “own negligence” in its records keeping system for the fiasco.

Lizama said that Donald G. Flores, a former Saipan mayor, cashed a check payment in the amount of $280,000 for land lease, and put in $200,000 to purchase TCD savings for 32 days from then-Union Bank Saipan branch in October 1993 and took the remaining $80,000 cash.

Lizama said that Donald Flores could not find the TCD original certificate and was told by the bank that all his bank records were gone and missing.

In March 2008, Donald’s wife, Cecilia, found the TCD’s original certificate. Donald then presented the original certificate to Union Bank, but the bank refused to cash the TCD.

“A TCD original certificate has no authority or power to redeem one’s own money in a bank?” asked Lizama, who pointed out that the bank has a policy of retaining records for seven and half years.

September 1993 to March 1999 is only five and a half years, he added.

“Therefore, if any record existed from the beginning, the bank should have all of Donald Flores’ TCD records at his visit in 1999!” the lawyer pointed out.

Attorney Sean Frink, counsel for Union Bank, said in his closing arguments that Lizama attempts to show that something happened in 1999 with Donald Flores’ visit to the bank.

Frink said then-Union Bank employee Lourdes S. Deleon Guerrero testified that she did not recall Donald making such a visit with the bank.

“Look at the documents, the details are telling,” Frink told the jurors.

Frink also noted their stipulation that states that on Sept. 22, 2008, Union Bank, through its office in California, responded that it had no record of the TCD and thus could not redeem it.

Ferdie De La Torre | Reporter
Ferdie Ponce de la Torre is a veteran journalist who has covered all news beats in the CNMI. Born in Lilo-an, Cebu City in the Philippines, De la Torre graduated from the University of Santo Tomas with a bachelor’s degree in journalism. He is a recipient of many commendations and awards, including the CNMI Judiciary’s prestigious Justice Award for his over 10 years of reporting on the judiciary’s proceedings and decisions. 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.