Probationer returns home and allegedly uses ‘ice,’ drinks beer


With the shutting down of Hinemlu O’hala Para Enteramenti Recovery Center, or the HOPE Recovery Center, due to COVID-19 pandemic, a federal probationer who was among the occupants of the facility went back to his residence and allegedly used methamphetamine and consumed an alcoholic beverage.

U.S. probation officer Gregory F. Arriola informed the U.S. District Court for the NMI last Friday that Francisco Nakatsukasa Basa violated conditions of his probation.

Arriola said that last March 29, he received a call from HOPE Recovery Center drug counselor Doreen Kintol that due to the current coronavirus pandemic, their facility was temporarily shutting down until further notice.

Arriola said this meant that the occupants of HOPE Recovery Center, which included Basa, would be discharged from the facility.

Arriola said later that evening he received a call from Basa who shared the information given by Kintol and related that he was moving back to his home in Afetnas the following day.

He said Basa also admitted that prior to their phone conversation, he was subjected to a random drug test and tested positive for methamphetamine.

Arriola said he instructed Basa, among other things, to cease any further drug use.

Arriola said the following morning, Kintol contacted him about Basa’s positive drug test.

The probation officer said that last March 31, he received a call from Basa’s wife, who advised that Basa was consuming an alcoholic beverage.

Arriola said when he spoke and confronted Basa about the information, Basa admitted he had consumed five cans of beer to help him relax after a long day of doing outside house chores.

Arriola said on the compliance matter, Basa continues to check in with him daily as instructed.

He said he is also working on referring Basa to another treatment vendor for substance abuse treatment since services with HOPE Recovery Center have temporarily ceased.

Last Feb. 4, Arriola also informed the court that Basa admitted that he used methamphetamine last Jan. 12.

Basa appeared in court last Feb. 19 and admitted to the allegation. A disposition hearing is currently set for May 11, 2020.

According to court records, in 2006 the District Court sentenced Basa to four years and six months imprisonment for conspiracy to distribute 50 grams of methamphetamine. He was placed on probation after completing the prison term.

The court had revoked Basa’s supervised release several times in the past mainly due to using methamphetamine or “ice.”

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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