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AG: NMI government should be defendant in lawsuit filed against fire officials

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ATTORNEY General Edward Manibusan said former fire chief Claudio K. Norita and fire inspector Anthony Babauta were acting within the scope of their employment when they denied the application of Double A Corporation for a permit to install a fire sprinkler and suppression system.

Represented by attorney Joseph E. Horey, Double A sued Norita and Babauta on March 27, 2019 for deprivation of property without due process, and deprivation of liberty without due process.

In a notice filed in the District Court for the NMI on Monday, the AG stated that the CNMI government will also be substituted for Norita and Babauta as the defendant in the lawsuit.

Last year, Chief Judge Ramona V. Manglona denied the defendants’ motion for summary judgement, saying that they deprived Double A of the right to do business when they denied the permit application of the company.

Represented by the Attorney General’s Office, Norita and Babauta have denied all the allegations of  Double A, saying that they have qualified immunity.

According to the lawsuit, in Oct. 2017, Double A was hired to install a fire sprinkler system in a complex of buildings operated by Proper Grand for the price of $410,150.

The project  was contingent upon the fire department approving Double A’s plan for the sprinkler system, but fire officials refused to issue any permit, the lawsuit stated.

 

 

November 2020 pssnewsletter

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