U.S. Attorney meets with CNMI AG

Sources close to the Commonwealth government are confirming CNMI Attorney General Edward Manibusan last week met with U.S. Attorney Shawn Anderson about allegations of corruption by former Gov. Ralph Torres and his administration.

The meeting centered around the Building Optimism and Opportunities for Stability Together grant program. The Torres administration used about $17 million in federal pandemic funds to award businesses – mainly political supporters of the governor – with cash awards ranging from $500 to $250,000 per grant. Some received BOOST grants twice.

A lengthy series of hearings by a joint committee of the previous CNMI House of Representatives revealed major allegations of corruption backed by the testimonies of Bank of Saipan officials and evidence of the corruption. Bank of Saipan administered the program.

The bank also received a BOOST grant. The bank is owned by the Calvo family of Guam. Other Calvo businesses in the CNMI also received BOOST grants.

Mr. Anderson’s office has filed several sealed indictments in the U.S. District Court of the NMI in the month of January alone. The number exceeds those filed in that month for the past several years.


  • Mabel Doge Luhan

      02/06/2023 at 4:43 PM

    This reminds me of the story my good friend (despite his being quite the confirmed bachelor!) Ludwig Wittgenstein loved to tell:

    “We are sitting in the garden, and I say, ‘That is a tree.’ And my friend says, ‘I know that is a tree.’ And I say, ‘I am certain that is a tree.’ A passerby stares at us, and I tell him, ‘We’re not crazy. We’re just doing philosophy.'”

    What’s these guys’ excuse?

  • Russ Mason

      02/06/2023 at 9:52 PM

    Kudos to US Attorney Anderson, AG Manibusen, our intrepid House of Representatives, and the FBI. I am hopeful that the crooks who scammed BOOST, and the despicable Ralph (The Rat) Torres, will feel the full weight of the law, and soon. Torres will face the Grand Jury in June, but maybe the Feds can indict before then. Either way, it’s going to be delicious. As Al Pacino remarked in HEAT, ” Brotha. You are goin’ down!”

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