Although the District Court for the NMI has previously lifted the stay on the limited receivership against Imperial Pacific International (CNMI) LLC, the actual sale of IPI’s assets is still pending the court’s approval.
According to a credible source, the plaintiffs in this case, seven former IPI employees who previously sued IPI over labor violations, have approval to prepare for sales.
However, District Court for the NMI Chief Judge Ramona Manglona will still need to approve the IPI assets that will be put up for sale or for auction, the source said.
A status conference on the matter will be scheduled sometime in September, according to the source.
Earlier this month, the U.S. District Court for the NMI lifted the stay on the limited receivership that was previously granted against IPI and its assets and has ordered Clear Management to proceed with its auction of IPI’s assets starting Aug. 30.
The limited receivership was previously granted in favor of U.S.A Fanter Corp. but it has since been assumed by former IPI workers who had sued IPI for labor violations.
According to the previous order issued lifting the stay, Clear Management was given authority to proceed with the auction of IPI’s casino gaming machines no sooner than Aug. 30, 2022.
Prior to issuing the order, the court determined that IPI defaulted under the stay agreement for failing to increase the supersedeas bond they previously agreed to, and the plaintiffs sought to lift the stay on the limited receivership so that IPI’s gaming equipment could be sold to satisfy their judgment against IPI.
At a hearing last Aug. 16, the court granted the plaintiffs’ request and ordered that the stay on the limited receivership be lifted.
Manglona said she previously asked the parties to brief the issue of the appropriate scope of what items are included in the limited receivership and may be sold by Clear Management.
However, other than its arguments that the gaming machines cannot be sold because of 4 CMC § 51564, and arguing that the entire limited receivership should be dissolved, IPI did not provide an analysis based on the court’s orders as to what items should or should not be sold by Clear Management.
So, because IPI failed to follow the courts request, Manglona found that all IPI “casino utilities” previously examined and identified by Clear Management can be sold.
The order further provided that Clear Management is authorized to sell all gaming equipment identified during the inspection to fulfill the judgment in this matter.
Manglona also noted that IPI’s lawyer had previously produced a “list of assets” that contained 39 pages of “gaming equipment, including hundreds of chairs and stools, poker chips, playing cards, security or surveillance equipment, and other items. These too have been included in the scope of IPI assets that can be auctioned off.