Palau court allows Hillbroom to post $275K cash bail

Court OKs travel to CNMI for lawsuit

The Supreme Court of the Republic of Palau Trial Division has allowed the temporary release of Junior Larry Hillbroom upon posting a cash bail of $275,000 and required him to provide a copy of any notice of deposition, hearing, or other court-required appearance for his lawsuits in the CNMI and other jurisdictions.

According to documents filed in federal court, Palau Trial Division Associate Justice Lourdes Materne on April 20, 2016, granted Hillbroom’s temporary release upon posting $275,000 cash bail subject to conditions, including a sign of waiver of extradition and no travel outside Palau without court’s approval.

Last June 7, Materne granted Hillbroom’s motion for modification of his conditions of release.

Materne required Hillbroom to submit to the court with his application a copy of any notice of deposition, hearing or other court-required appearance for his lawsuits in the NMI, Hawaii, and California.

Materne ordered Hillbroom to provide a travel itinerary for air transportation to and from the location of travel demonstrating that the air travel will occur only through the airports of Palau and U.S.A. and no other foreign country.

The associate justice also required Hillbroom to provide address and telephone contact numbers for locations where he shall be residing while abroad.

Materne said the court reserves upon later determination on application for travel whether it may require, at the time of the trial of Hillbroom’s lawsuit pending in the U.S. District Court for the NMI, that he be under escort by a law enforcement officer.

Last April, the federal court has ordered one of the lawyers for Hillbroom to submit information in court regarding Hillbroom’s criminal case in Palau.

Hillbroom, one of the four DNA-proven children of the late business tycoon and DHL co-founder Larry Lee Hillblom, was recaptured in Palau hours after he allegedly escaped from police custody last Feb. 19, just a few days after he was arrested over the seizure of $160,000 worth of methamphetamine or “ice” (160 grams).

Hillbroom, 31, was recaptured after he allegedly dove into the water and tried to swim when police tracked a vehicle at a dock in a town called Meyuns Hamlet in Palau before, according to news reports.

Hillbroom pleaded not guilty.

Hillbroom was first served with an arrest warrant for trafficking controlled substance charge when he arrived in Palau from Manila last Feb. 17, according to a press release by Palau’s Ministry of Justice.

Combined efforts of the Bureau of Public Safety, the Division of Customs, and the Belau Drug Enforcement Task Force led to Hillbroom’s arrest at the Palau International Airport.

The arrest of Hillbroom came after two women who arrived from Manila last Feb. 12 were allegedly found concealing 160 grams of “ice.”

Further investigation indicated that Hillbroom was the alleged supplier of the seized “ice.”

According to court papers, the two women claimed that Hillbroom “offered to pay them when they arrived in Palau.”

Hillbroom’s mother, Kaelani Kinney, is Palauan. Hillbroom is based in the U.S. mainland.

Hillbroom’s name is spelled differently from DHL co-founder Larry Hillblom.

Hillbroom has filed a legal malpractice lawsuit against his former lawyers David J. Lujan and Barry Israel in federal court.

Lujan was the lead counsel in Hillbroom’s successful legal battle in CNMI Superior Court to claim part of Hillblom’s multi-million estate.

Hillbroom is suing Lujan and Israel for allegedly conspiring with a former trustee to inflate the attorney’s contingency fee when Hillblom’s fortune was still undergoing probate proceedings in Superior Court.

Hillblom, founder of DHL Express, died in a plane crash off Anatahan waters in 1995. His body was never recovered.

Approximately $100 million in assets were distributed to Hillbroom in the settlement of the probate case for the Hillblom estate.

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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