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    Friday, September 20, 2019-5:28:48P.M.

     

     

     

     

     

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US court dismisses inmate’s double-jeopardy, due-process-violation claims

THE District Court for the NMI has dismissed inmate Anthony Rios’s petition for a writ of habeas corpus.

Rios, who is serving 45 years for sexual assault of a minor, is claiming his right to be free from double jeopardy and his right to due process.

Federal Judge Frances M. Tydingco-Gatewood on Monday dismissed without prejudice Rios’s petition for a writ of habeas corpus as to his double jeopardy claim.

She likewise denied Rios’s motion for reconsideration in regard to his due process claims.

The judge noted Rios’s pending proceedings in the NMI Superior Court. “His claim regarding his sentence is not yet exhausted,” she added.

In addition, the judge finds that Rios has not made a substantial showing of the denial of a constitutional right to due process. She declined to issue a certificate of appealability.

The CNMI government said the court should dismiss Rios’s claims as he has failed to exhaust state-level remedies.

According to Assistant Attorney General Hessel Yntema, Rios has active petitions in a local court with outstanding motions for appointment of attorney and reduction of sentence and a notice for writ of habeas corpus.

“He seeks the exact remedy that he presently seeks from the District Court, a sentence reduction,” Yntema added.

Because the CNMI proceeding could reverse the sentence that Rios challenges, a CNMI decision could moot the federal petition, Yntema added.

On Nov. 14, 2018, Rios, representing himself, filed a petition for writ of habeas corpus in federal court and alleged violation of the 5th Amendment protection against double jeopardy, claiming that the CNMI Superior Court incorrectly calculated his sentence at his probation revocation.