8 Aug 2012

CNMI Senate asks governor to suspend AG without pay

3:01 pm on 8 August 2012

The Superior Court in the Northern Marianas has issued a warrant for the Attorney General for failing to appear in court.

Edward Buckingham, who left for the US at the weekend, faces a number of criminal complaints filed by the Office of the Public Auditors.

Our correspondent, Mark Rabago, says the FBI turned up at the airport to issue Mr Buckingham a court summons for last Monday.

But he says police officers and Ports Authority staff, who were there assisting Mr Buckingham, allegedly tried to prevent the serving of the summons.

"Witnesses saw attorney general Buckingham being escorted by police officers, deputy commissioner Ambrosio Ogumoro for one carried his [AG] luggage and his wife's luggage to the airport. The summons was fortunately delivered after FBI agents went to the VIP room and delivered."

Mark Rabago says additional charges against the attorney general are obstruction of justice and misconduct in public office over his alleged use of police officers to escort him.

He also says the Senate has asked the Governor Benigno Fitial to suspend Mr Buckingham without pay.