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$100K bail set for ex-Corrections officer

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SUPERIOR Court Associate Judge Kenneth Govendo has imposed a $100,000 cash bail  on former Corrections Officer Eloy Reyes Dela Cruz Jr. who is accused of pawning his department-issued handgun to Gordon Castro for $40 cash and $40 worth of methamphetamine or ice.

The handgun was  used by Castro in a hostage-taking incident that resulted in his and his girlfriend’s death in the early morning hours of March 12, 2020.

After the bail hearing on Monday afternoon, Judge Govendo remanded Dela Cruz to the custody of the Department of Corrections, and scheduled a bail modification hearing for Tuesday, Oct. 6, 2020, at 1:30 p.m. following a request from the defendant who is represented by attorney Joey San Nicolas.

Judge Govendo also ordered Dela Cruz to return to court on Oct. 15 at 1:30 p.m. for a preliminary hearing and on Oct. 26 at 9 a.m. for  arraignment.

The government is charging Dela Cruz with 6 CMC § 10201: Security mortgages, deposits, or pawns with firearms, destructive devices, or ammunition prohibited; loan or rental of firearms, destructive devices, or ammunition prohibited; and 6 CMC § 10601: Firearm Owner’s Identification Card requirement exceptions.

Police said Michael Jordan Cabrera, who was known to Dela Cruz, provided information regarding the handgun.

Police said on Feb. 24, 2020, Dela Cruz called Cabrera and asked if he knew anyone interested in buying or trading a chainsaw for ice.

Cabrera said he was picked up by Dela Cruz and they went to a poker establishment in Susupe where the defendant met with Castro who refused to trade meth with the chainsaw.

Cabrera said Dela Cruz then offered his government-issued black 9mm semiautomatic firearm for $40 and $40 worth of meth.

Cabrera said Dela Cruz provided his firearm to Castro as “collateral.”

Police said Dela Cruz does not  possess a CNMI-firearms ammunition explosive ID card, nor is he registered to sell or transfer pawn or loan any firearm or ammunition.

On Feb. 26, 2020, Dela Cruz reported that his firearm was stolen from his vehicle, police said.

November 2020 pssnewsletter

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