2 Sep 2009

US-based law firm received thousands of dollars from CNMI

11:46 am on 2 September 2009

A U.S.-based law firm representing the Commonwealth of the Northern Marianas in its fight with Washington DC against its federalization plans, was billed nearly 400-thousand US for a six month period to February this year.

The Saipan Tribune reports that the Governor Benigno Fitial used funds from his discretionary account and from other accounts under the Office of the Governor to make five separate payments and wire transfers.

One of the four lawyers for the Chicago firm involved, Jenner & Block, was paid 700 US dollars an hour.

Others received from 260 to 550 dollars an hour.

The release of the figures comes after a court directive that the Governor reveal how much the CNMI government is paying for the lawsuit it filed against the U.S. government opposing the federalization of local immigration.