MVA notes drop in vandalism at tourist sites


The Marianas Visitors Authority has noted a drop in the number of incidents of desecration of facilities and monuments at popular tourist sites on Saipan.

MVA managing director Christopher A. Concepcion believes this happened because law enforcers have stepped up their efforts to watch these areas.

“I think it discouraged people from vandalizing our tourist sites. So far so good,” he said, adding that he has lately not seen any reports from the Department of Public Safety about such incidents.

“I hope this community has learned and continues to appreciate that the tourism industry really is the only industry we have here. It’s really important for the overall wellbeing of the people here,” he said.

At present, MVA has been paying security guards to watch tourist sites in Marpi, Obyan Beach, Lau Lau Bay, Grotto Dive Spot, and Bird Island Lookout.

DPS Commissioner Robert A. Guerrero cites police officers’ anti-drug campaign as a factor behind the significant reduction in the CNMI’s crime rate.

Guerrero said a check with court cases also shows a drop in the number of crimes in the Commonwealth.

In his State of the Commonwealth Address last month, Gov. Ralph DLG Torres disclosed that the crime rate is down by 65.3 percent, compared to the numbers in 2013.

In five years, Torres said, domestic violence decreased by over 78 percent and property crimes are down by 58 percent.

Guerrero said that, with drugs down, this has also significantly reduced the crime rate.

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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