Marianas Variety - Marianas Variety - Today's Headlines http://www.mvariety.com/component/content/?view=featured Mon, 02 May 2016 02:43:19 +1000 Joomla! - Open Source Content Management en-gb BREAKING NEWS: FBI arrests man for possession of ATM skimming devices http://www.mvariety.com/cnmi/cnmi-news/local/85790-breaking-news-fbi-arrests-suspect-in-bank-skimming-case http://www.mvariety.com/cnmi/cnmi-news/local/85790-breaking-news-fbi-arrests-suspect-in-bank-skimming-case

A CHINESE national was arrested by the Federal Bureau of Investigation on Thursday after U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers confiscated ATM skimming devices from his luggage.

Xiaolin Yang made an initial appearance before Magistrate Judge Heather Kennedy in federal court on Friday. Attorney Mark Hanson was appointed to represent him while U.S. Assistant Attorney Garth Backe appeared on behalf of the federal government.

Yang, who is facing the charge of illegal possession of device-making equipment, was remanded to the custody of the U.S. Marshals after his initial court appearance. The preliminary hearing was set for May 13, 2016 at 1:30 p.m.

In his affidavit in support of a criminal complaint and arrest warrant, FBI special agent Haejun Park stated that Yang arrived in the early morning of April 28, 2016 onboard Asiana Airlines flight No. 625 from Hong Kong via Incheon, South Korea. Park said during immigration processing by U.S. Customs and Border Protection, Yang acted in a suspicious manner and was subjected to undergo additional screening. Park said ATM skimming devices were later found in Yang's luggage.

Park said while Yang was detained at the airport, and when all the other passengers had left, CBP officers noticed an "Asian male" waiting outside the arrival area. The man told CBP officers that he was waiting for a passenger but would not give the passenger’s name. About 20 minutes later, the CBP officers noticed that the same man was once again in the passenger arrival area but when they approached him, he immediately left.

Park said with the assistance of a translator, he investigated Yang who waived his Miranda rights and provided a statement. Park said Yang was alone and he didn’t know anyone on Saipan. Yang said he knew the devices were in his luggage but he didn’t know what they were for. He said a friend from China asked him to carry the devices and when Yang arrived on Saipan, his friend would fly over from China to retrieve them. Yang was booked at the Holiday Hotel.

Park said with Yang’s consent, the FBI special agent checked Yang's belongings including an iPhone 6 and discovered chat messages between Yang and the friend from China who gave Yang detailed instructions about what to do upon arrival. 

Park said he inspected the devices consisting of two green-colored card readers and six gray-colored plastic panels with pinhole cameras secreted inside. Park said he interviewed Bank of Guam vice president and CNMI regional manager Marcie Tomokane in Garapan who told him that the card readers were an exact match with the factory-installed card readers present on Bank of Guam’s ATM machines. Park said Tomokane told him they were not expecting any service to be performed on any of their ATM machines on Saipan, adding that such service was performed by technicians from the mainland U.S.

Park said an ATM skimming device is typically fastened over the top of a factory-installed card reader and, together with a small hidden camera, is used by criminals to capture data from the magnetic stripe on the back of an ATM card as well as the customer’s inputted Personal Identification Number or PIN. Park said the captured electronic data will then be transferred onto a fraudulent ATM card and the captured PIN will be used to withdraw money from the account.

Early in April, First Hawaiian Bank said it had identified certain ATMs in Saipan believed to be involved in an ATM skimming incident.

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editor@mvariety.com (By Raquel C. Bagnol) Featured CNMI Local News CNMI Fri, 29 Apr 2016 17:15:23 +1000
Torres appoints Manuel Mangarero to DPL board http://www.mvariety.com/cnmi/cnmi-news/local/85776-torres-appoints-manuel-mangarero-to-dpl-board http://www.mvariety.com/cnmi/cnmi-news/local/85776-torres-appoints-manuel-mangarero-to-dpl-board

GOVERNOR Ralph Torres has appointed Manuel Mangarero to the Department of Public Lands Advisory Board which now has five members.

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ilw@mvariety.com (By Cherrie Anne E. Villahermosa - cherrie@mvariety.com - Variety News Staff) Featured CNMI Local News CNMI Fri, 29 Apr 2016 00:00:00 +1000
Bill to establish bingo board http://www.mvariety.com/cnmi/cnmi-news/local/85772-bill-to-establish-bingo-board http://www.mvariety.com/cnmi/cnmi-news/local/85772-bill-to-establish-bingo-board

THE Saipan and Northern Islands Legislative Delegation has passed a measure establishing the Saipan Bingo Board.

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ilw@mvariety.com (By Cherrie Anne E. Villahermosa - cherrie@mvariety.com - Variety News Staff) Featured CNMI Local News CNMI Fri, 29 Apr 2016 00:00:00 +1000
CHC provides quality care, says CEO http://www.mvariety.com/cnmi/cnmi-news/local/85771-chc-provides-quality-care-says-ceo http://www.mvariety.com/cnmi/cnmi-news/local/85771-chc-provides-quality-care-says-ceo

THE islands’ only hospital is providing quality health services to the community, Commonwealth Healthcare Corp. CEO Esther Muna told Variety.

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ilw@mvariety.com (By Bryan Manabat - bryan@mvariety.com - Variety News Staff) Featured CNMI Local News CNMI Fri, 29 Apr 2016 00:00:00 +1000
Torres vetoes mandatory long sentence for firearm offenses, and lime bill http://www.mvariety.com/cnmi/cnmi-news/local/85778-torres-vetoes-mandatory-long-sentence-for-firearm-offenses-and-lime-bill http://www.mvariety.com/cnmi/cnmi-news/local/85778-torres-vetoes-mandatory-long-sentence-for-firearm-offenses-and-lime-bill

GOVERNOR Ralph Torres disapproved a measure imposing a mandatory long sentence for firearm offenses, saying some of its provisions are in conflict with the new gun-control law.

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ilw@mvariety.com (By Cherrie Anne E. Villahermosa - cherrie@mvariety.com - Variety News Staff) Featured CNMI Local News CNMI Fri, 29 Apr 2016 00:00:00 +1000
NMI to hold state memorial services for former Lt. Gov. Manglona http://www.mvariety.com/cnmi/cnmi-news/local/85779-nmi-to-hold-state-memorial-services-for-former-lt-gov-manglona http://www.mvariety.com/cnmi/cnmi-news/local/85779-nmi-to-hold-state-memorial-services-for-former-lt-gov-manglona

THE commonwealth will hold a state memorial service to honor the late Benjamin Taisacan Manglona, one of the CNMI’s founding fathers.

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ilw@mvariety.com (By Cherrie Anne E. Villahermosa - cherrie@mvariety.com - Variety News Staff) Featured CNMI Local News CNMI Fri, 29 Apr 2016 00:00:00 +1000
CHCC: 3 new cases of TB on Saipan http://www.mvariety.com/cnmi/cnmi-news/local/85762-chcc-3-new-cases-of-tb-on-saipan http://www.mvariety.com/cnmi/cnmi-news/local/85762-chcc-3-new-cases-of-tb-on-saipan

(Press Release) — The Commonwealth Healthcare Corporation-Division of Public Health Services wishes to inform the community that there have been three new active cases of tuberculosis diagnosed in Saipan this month.   None of the three cases are linked to each other. This means that one case did not cause the other cases.

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ilw@mvariety.com ( ) Featured CNMI Local News CNMI Fri, 29 Apr 2016 00:00:00 +1000
DPL denies Club 88’s allegations, files counterclaim http://www.mvariety.com/cnmi/cnmi-news/local/85773-dpl-denies-club-88-s-allegations-files-counterclaim http://www.mvariety.com/cnmi/cnmi-news/local/85773-dpl-denies-club-88-s-allegations-files-counterclaim

THE Department of Public Lands denied the allegations of Club 88 and filed a $10.5 million counterclaim against the e-gaming company.

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ilw@mvariety.com (By Cherrie Anne E. Villahermosa - cherrie@mvariety.com - Variety News Staff) Featured CNMI Local News CNMI Fri, 29 Apr 2016 00:00:00 +1000
Torres justifies CUC board members’ trip to Korea http://www.mvariety.com/cnmi/cnmi-news/local/85781-torres-justifies-cuc-board-members-trip-to-korea http://www.mvariety.com/cnmi/cnmi-news/local/85781-torres-justifies-cuc-board-members-trip-to-korea

GOVERNOR Ralph Torres on Thursday said Commonwealth Utilities Corp. board members and engineers traveled to South Korea as part of a feasibility study in preparation for acquiring a new generator and power plant.

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ilw@mvariety.com (By Cherrie Anne E. Villahermosa - cherrie@mvariety.com - Variety News Staff) Featured CNMI Local News CNMI Fri, 29 Apr 2016 00:00:00 +1000
Aeronautical Dolphins win merit award http://www.mvariety.com/cnmi/cnmi-news/local/85782-aeronautical-dolphins-win-merit-award http://www.mvariety.com/cnmi/cnmi-news/local/85782-aeronautical-dolphins-win-merit-award

THE two-time Real World Design Challenge national champions, the MHS Aeronautical Dolphins, won a merit award at the competition held in Washington, D.C. on April 22-23, 2016. Xavier High School of Connecticut is this year’s winner.

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ilw@mvariety.com (By Bryan Manabat - bryan@mvariety.com - Variety News Staff) Featured CNMI Local News CNMI Fri, 29 Apr 2016 00:00:00 +1000
BECQ fines Best Sunshine for repeated violations http://www.mvariety.com/cnmi/cnmi-news/local/85783-becq-fines-best-sunshine-for-repeated-violations http://www.mvariety.com/cnmi/cnmi-news/local/85783-becq-fines-best-sunshine-for-repeated-violations

THE Bureau of Environmental and Coastal Quality on Thursday imposed a $40,000 fine on Imperial Pacific International/Best Sunshine International for the repeated discharge of wastewater into the lagoon from the construction site of the Grand Mariana in Garapan.

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ilw@mvariety.com (By Emmanuel T. Erediano - emmanuel@mvariety.com - Variety News Staff) Featured CNMI Local News CNMI Fri, 29 Apr 2016 00:00:00 +1000