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Last updateWed, 17 Jul 2019 12am







    Tuesday, July 16, 2019-1:56:51P.M.






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US court enters default judgment against Tinian Dynasty

MAGISTRATE Judge Heather Kennedy has recommended that the federal court enter a default judgement against the management of the defunct Tinian Dynasty Hotel & Casino which was sued by its former guest workers.

District Court for the NMI designated Judge Frances M. Tydingco-Gatewood on Monday adopted the recommendation.

She granted the plaintiffs’ motion to strike the answers of Hong Kong Entertainment (Overseas) Investment Ltd. Or HKE and Mega Stars Overseas Ltd., which is doing business as Tinian Dynasty.

According to Magistrate Judge Kennedy, “It is established that a corporation may appear in the federal court only through licensed counsel.”

She said the court informed Tinian Dynasty on several occasions after the withdrawal of its lawyers in 2016 and 2018 that it could face sanctions, including stricken answers and a default judgment, if it failed to obtain a new lawyer.

No counsel has appeared to represent Tinian Dynasty since Jan. 16, 2018, when the defendant’s second counsel was permitted to withdraw from the case, Magistrate Judge Kennedy said.

She said the court may strike HKE’s and Mega Star’s answers and enter a default judgment based on their failure to defend and failure to comply with the court’s orders to obtain a lawyer.

Judge Tydinco-Gatewood, in her order, noted that no objections were filed by any party to Magistrate Judge Kennedy’s recommendation.

The magistrate judge said the former Dynasty workers’ motion for default judgment “does not assert an amount for damages or include the evidence necessary for the court to determine the amount of damages for the entry of a final judgment.”

In their complaint, Eric F. Dona and six other co-plaintiffs represented by attorney Samuel Mok allege that the owners and management of Tinian Dynasty lied to them about their immigration status. There are eight other workers who are also plaintiffs in the lawsuit.

They are accusing Tinian Dynasty of fraudulent concealment, negligent misrepresentation, constructive fraud, and wrongful termination, and are seeking punitive damages.

On April 27, 2018, they asked the court to strike the defendants’ answers to the complaint and enter a default judgment against HKE and Mega Stars for damages in an amount to be determined at a hearing.