10 Aug 2009

CNMI's Villagomez to face civil suit

12:41 pm on 10 August 2009

The U.S. government is to file a separate civil case to seek the forfeiture of the boat of the former Lieutenant Governor of the Commonwealth of the Northern Marianas, Timothy Villagomez.

Last week, Villagomez, his sister Joaquina Santos, and her husband, a former Commerce secretary, James Santos, were jailed on fraud charges.

A US attorney, Eric O'Malley, says Villagomez's boat, DR V, had not been sought in the trial because the state always intended a separate civil proceeding to force its forfeiture.

The prosecutor had said that the boat was either involved in the offence or was a traceable proceed of the crime.