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Another $20K first class trip

By Jacob Nakamura


(Tumon, Guam) Lt. Gov. Arnold Palacios authorized Gov. Ralph Torres to spend more than $20,000 in local and federal money to travel on first- and business-class seats and spend three days in Washington, D.C. and two days in Guam from the end of February to the beginning of March this year.


The Washington leg of the trip was to attend the annual winter session of the National Governors Association. In Guam, Mr. Torres was the keynote speaker of the U.S. Navy Seabees, according to the travel authorization signed by Mr. Palacios February 4, 2019.


The airfare alone cost taxpayers $16,330. This includes a series of business and first class seats for the governor and first lady Diann Tudela Torres along every leg of their trip. Their airfare alone cost $8,165. The documents indicate that Angel Demapan, governor's chief of staff, was on the trip. The airfare of more passenger(s) clearly was authorized by this TA, though their names are not included in the documents.



While in Washington, the CNMI's first couple spent two nights at the four-star Marriott Marquis hotel at a cost to the Commonwealth of $2,149.06.


In Guam, they spent one night at the Westin Resort, costing $366.30.


They were paid a stipend of $2,284 for the nine days they purportedly were on business for the Commonwealth while off island.


The travel documents are below:



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It will be interesting to see just how much of these trips can be prosecuted by the feds?

The main laws that Ralphy boy has broken on these junkets is traveling first class and illegal reimbursements and possibly unauthorized "scam" trips along with certain individuals accompanying him and collected per diem and first class travels.


How much of this is with Fed monies and also do the "first class" rules apply with Fed monies.


As far as being prosecuted locally, if even that was to happen, as we have seen in regards to the Rota mayor and his accomplishes, any local prosecution will all be "plead away" and reduced to some kind of a misdemeanor charge and most likely will…


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He thought they said seafood.

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Ralph a keynote speaker on Guam for the Navy Seabees? I guess the Elvis Impersonator from the mainland or the strippers from the New Vikings Club were already booked or couldn't make it, so Ralph was the obvious alternative entertainment (stand up comedian).

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Some hapless kid steals a wallet, CNMI AG grandstands about prosecuting them and a tough sentence and let this be a warning.


Ralphie steals five and six figure sums, with the evidence all in front of us, and CNMI AG? Crickets. Why isn't there an arrest warrant?

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Now's the time for Jay Wolfe to ask IPI/Torres for more money to search for exculpatory evidence. Like, for example, it was a different Ralph Torres who took the trip. Also, who pays $1,000 a night for the Marriott Marquis? Even if he got the Dictatorial Suite, that place is a dump. At least his heros Marcos and Duterte knew their luxury. Ralphie's gonna spend his loot on Cheetos, Go Pro, and maybe a Fossil watch.

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