Marianas Variety

Last updateSat, 23 Mar 2019 12am







    Friday, March 22, 2019-5:01:23A.M.






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Saipan cockfight arena discontinues operation

BECAUSE of the authorities’ failure to stop illegal cockfights on island, Sapan’s only licensed cockfight operator Nick C. Sablan has discontinued his operation.

cockfightHe won the contract after bidding $41,000 for a five-year license that took effect in 2010.

“I am very frustrated with the lack of cooperation from the authorities and the illegal operators’ lack of respect for the law and I just cannot tolerate it anymore,” Sablan told Mayor Donald G. Flores in a letter.

Flores said he was “saddened” by Sablan’s decision which will reduce the revenue of the mayor’s office and affect its delivery of services to the community.

“I am hopeful that someone else will get the license,” Flores said, adding that his office has already announced the bidding for it.

Sablan owns the cockpit in Garapan on Middle Road.

In his letter, Sablan informed the mayor that a few months ago he directed the police to an illegal cockfighting activity.

Some individuals were arrested but no one was charged or prosecuted, Sablan said.

Illegal cockfights continue to this day, he added.

“I cannot in good faith continue knowing that my competitors are operating without consequences while I struggle to recover my investment. The truth is the numbers are not there anymore to justify the continuation of this operation,” Sablan told the mayor.

Flores said he will again ask  the Attorney General’s Office and the Department of Public Safety to help put an end to illegal cockfighting activities.

Sablan also suggested to the mayor to recommend an amendment to the law so that a cockfight operator can apply for a  business license instead of a franchise.

He said the Saipan legislative delegation can come up with a fee  similar to what is paid by the poker industry. This, he added, will give illegal cockfight operators a chance to legitimate their operation and pay taxes.