The hearing on Gov. Benigno R. Fitial's massage by a woman accused of human trafficking has been postponed at the request of Attorney General Edward Buckingham, according to the Saipan Tribune.
Maybe that should be alleged massage; the article refers to the "alleged unauthorized release". Buckingham has his work cut out. Both Fitial and Corrections Commissioner Dolores M. Aldan told the Tribune in a statement that they knew the "unusual situation" could be a problem.
Serious enough that Aldan is quoted as saying "I made about seven calls to the number I have for Deputy Hall and about six calls to the cell phone of the attorney general." That's something like putting up a Beware of Dog sign and letting the beast roam free.
The U.S. Attorney holds all of the cards (if not the prisoners). We don't know where the feds are going with this, and it is possible they could file charges.
While the move is understandable, personally, I'm disappointed that the hearing was postponed. The information vacuum is being filled by scurrilous speculation on the street and on the internet. Almost all of the comments on the Thursday and Friday Marianas Variety stories are negative.
Newly-hired press secretary Angel Demapan is probably disappointed too. While his first days have been "really tough", media frenzies usually have a short life, depending as they do on new developments. In this case, just about the time attentions lag, the hearing will guarantee more Front Page coverage.
Still, it could be worse. National news has been dominated by the earthquake in Haiti. And, while the Associated Press story appeared in hundreds of newspapers, most of them ran a short, somewhat sanitized version like this Washington Post blurb. I couldn't find it on Reuters and only on blogs related to Saipan.
Angelo posted the KSPN video on The Saipan Blog and YouTube. There's another version on YouTube.