CNMI governor’s legal counsel nominated as Superior Court judge

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CNMI Governor Ralph Torres appoints his legal counsel to the CNMI Superior Court. The CNMI Judiciary reportedly has an increased case load and has been without a fifth judge for over a year.

CNMI – After over a year, CNMI Gov. Ralph Torres announced his pick to fill the vacancy in the CNMI Superior Court. The governor’s very own legal counsel Wesley M. Bogdan was nominated by Torres and if confirmed, will sit on the bench formerly occupied by Judge David Wiseman, who retired on May 19 last year.

“He has been here for several years, actually quite a long time. I’ve seen him and worked with him one to one on the issues in respect to the law and the CNMI law as well. I believe he is the right person,” CNMI Governor. Ralph Deleon Guerrero Torres told PNC.

The CNMI Bar Association is expected to release its evaluation of Bogdan, who has been legal counsel for the current and past gubernatorial administrations, in the next week. The governor said, the decision went through extreme vetting.

“It was not as easy as, ‘oh here’s a lawyer next to me,’ or he’s my personal legal counsel, we can go ahead and appoint him. So its part of your nominees to turn in their letter of intent, so vetting them all out and making sure their choices are right took this long,” Torres added.

Bogdan received his Juris Doctorate from the University of New Mexico School of Law and Bachelors in Business and Political Science from University of Texas. The CNMI Bar Association certified him in 1998.

“I spoke to several judges and justices also both here and on Guam and so far I have heard good things regarding my appointment,” Torres noted.

There is no word yet on the date of his Senate hearing, however, the judiciary with its reportedly increased case load is in need of a fifth judge.