US govt wants Sablan detained pending trial


The U.S. government wants David Muña Sablan detained pending his trial on charges related to two bags he left behind in Garapan that allegedly contained chemicals used in manufacturing crystal methamphetamine.

Assistant U.S. attorney Garth R. Backe said that no condition of Sablan’s release will “reasonably assure” the safety of the community.

Sablan’s detention hearing at the U.S. District Court for the NMI will take place today, Wednesday, at 9:30am.

Magistrate Judge Heather L. Kennedy appointed Janet H. King as counsel for Sablan.

Sablan was arrested last Thursday after the Drug Enforcement Administration filed a criminal complaint charging him with conspiracy to manufacture methamphetamine.

He was taken before Kennedy last Friday afternoon for his initial appearance.

At the hearing, Kennedy said the court granted the U.S. Marshal Service’s recommendation that Sablan be placed on full restraint based on his prior criminal history, violence or attempts to flee at the time of his arrest.

David G. Banes, the court-appointed counsel for Sablan at Friday’s proceeding, stated he did not object to full restraint.

After the hearing, Sablan was remanded into the custody of the U.S. Marshal.

Sablan allegedly threw a backpack and a bag that contained chemicals and items used in making “ice” during a police chase in Garapan last Thursday early morning. Four police officers complained of nausea and dizziness, and vomited after they inhaled the chemicals.

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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