23 Feb 2018
- By Bryan Manabat – [email protected] – Variety News Staff
IN his testimony on Thursday, Sen. Paul A. Manglona told the Superior Court that he stated in a lease agreement that he was the owner of property on upper Capital Hill and that there were no liens or claims against it.
“It’s mine — I know that for a fact,” the senator said in response to the defense counsel’s questions. Manglona, in his private capacity, sued his siblings Priscilla M, Torres, Thomas A. Manglona, and the estate of their mother Bernadita A. Manglona over the disputed land on upper Capital Hill.
Attorney Samuel I. Mok, who represents the defendants, said there is another lawsuit in court in connection with the lease agreement that the senator signed with American CM LLC regarding the upper Capital Hill property.
Asked about it, the senator said: “I told them that if there were any problems with it I would address them. I guaranteed that the land is mine.”
Mok said, “You were aware that when you signed that lease agreement the Bernadita Manglona Estate co-administrators were maintaining their claim to the property at issue.”
The senator replied, “I will not wait 20 years for them to file a quite title.”
Asked if he could name a specific piece of writing stating that he owned the property, the senator said, “There’s no need for it to be in writing — my mom knew it, my dad knew it. I don’t need anything in writing.”
The senator has asked the court to declare him the fee simple owner of the property by virtue of a deed of gift on July 11, 1985.
Torres and Thomas Manglona are co-administrators of the estate of their late mother, Bernadita A. Manglona. Charles Manglona and Associate Justice John A. Manglona are the senator’s other siblings named in the lawsuit.
The senator’s lawyers, Mark Scoggins and Rene Holmes, rested their case after their client’s testimony.
The defendants’ counsel then moved for judgment on partial findings.
Mok said the plaintiff has failed to carry the burden to show that he owns the property in light of the evidence and testimony presented in court.
Superior Court Judge Pro Tem David Wiseman placed the defendant’s motion under advisement and ordered both parties to submit briefs to support their positions before May 4, 2018.
Judge Wiseman will rule whether to grant the motion of the defense, in which case the trial will be discontinued; or he will ask for more evidence and additional testimony.
Reed Hayes, a handwriting and document examiner from Hawaii, testified in court on Wednesday that the signature on the deed of gift at issue was not that of Bernadita Manglona.
The defendants contend that their mother’s signature was forged.
Source: Marianas Variety : http://www.mvariety.com/cnmi/cnmi-news/local/102470-senator-manglona-the-land-is-mine