Superior Court Associate Judge Joseph N. Camacho allowed Friday Rota Department of Community and Cultural Affairs resident director Josepha Barcinas Manglona to post a bail of $1,000 cash and $49,000 in unsecured bond.
Saipan Tribune learned that Camacho granted Manglona’s counsel Timothy Bellas’ motion to modify the $50,000 cash bail the court had earlier imposed.
Manglona’s husband, a Rota police sergeant, served as her third-party custodian.
Manglona was brought to the Rota courthouse on Friday afternoon to try to beat the 24-hour deadline to bring her to court, but the Rota courthouse was closed at the time.
Manglona, who was arrested on Thursday, was supposed to be taken to the Department of Corrections on Saipan via late Friday afternoon flight.
As a result, Camacho held a hearing on Saipan without Manglona’s presence. Bellas and Chief Prosecutor Leonardo Rapadas appeared in court.
An investigator said it was his first time to see a bail hearing in which a defendant was not present and that the affidavit of probable cause and proof of service of a defendant’s arrest have not been even filed in court yet.
Saipan Tribune, however, learned that Rapadas and Bellas waived Manglona’s presence in court at the bail hearing.
Sources said when Manglona arrived at DOC on Saipan at 5pm, she was subsequently released because the bail was already modified and the $1,000 cash was already posted.
Sources said members of the CNMI Public Corruption and White Collar Crimes Task Force arrested the 53-year-old Manglona on Rota on Thursday for theft, conspiracy to commit theft by unlawful taking or disposition, and removal of government property.