15 Mar 2013

Former CNMI governor Fitial still not given summons

4:51 pm on 15 March 2013

The former governor of the Northern Marianas, Benigno Fitial, has reportedly still not received his penal summons to appear in court.

This week, the Superior Court issued the summons calling him to front the court to explain himself over allegations that while he was governor he helped a former attorney general flee the territory to avoid being served a summons for abuse of power.

Our correspondent, Mark Rabago, says the summons orders Mr Fitial to appear on court on the first Monday after receiving the summons.

But he says the authorities don't know where Mr Fitial is.

"If he gets the summons today, then he has to show up in court on Monday. If he gets the penal summons on Tuesday, then he has to appear in court the next Monday. So, as long as he doesn't get the summons yet, then he hasn't received it formally and he is not obliged to appear in court. As of now our reports are indicating that he hasn't because even the authorities here, they're still trying to find out where to mail or where to bring the summons."

Mark Rabago says Mr Fitial is believed to be in either California or the Philippines.