Prosecution rests in GHURA conspiracy trial

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The government has rested its case in the Guam Housing and Urban Renewal Authority (GHURA) misconduct case.

The government has rested its case in the Guam Housing and Urban Renewal Authority (GHURA) misconduct case.

When the government rested its case, their motion to dismiss two charges against Roland Selvidge was granted by the court.

Following this dismissal, the defense argued why the remaining charges against their clients should not be dismissed as well. As it stands, former GHURA chairman David Sablan has 10 charges remaining

Sam Teker, defense attorney, said the government’s charges have been very vague and with respect to charges 1, 2, and 3, the intent has not been met.

“No intent has been shown but the main thing here is about the quorum requirements and that a meeting occurred … a meeting did not occur in respect to the violation of open government law,” Teker said.

Teker contends that there was no quorum requirement and no action taken in regards to the awarding of low-income housing tax credits. Teker, along with fellow defense counsel, Curtis Van De Veld, continues to uphold that the alleged meeting was actually an on-site inspection that does not require a quorum.

Meanwhile, Cecile Suda has two charges against her which her attorney, Curtis Van de Veld, in line with Teker’s arguments, continued to push for dismissal.

Not a single witness has taken the witness stand that has personal knowledge which says there was a vote, not a single person. Mr. Aguon couldn’t testify as to what occurred on December 26th, he wasn’t there. Mr. Camacho, he couldn’t testify. He said he had a feeling about what they did after he left but once he was told that there was going to be a record of an allocation to Great Homes, he got so distressed, he left the meeting, Van De Veld said.

Each defendant cited that there is no evidence to support unlawful intent or personal gain and that they were doing so under the advisement of legal counsel.

But what really riled the government’s feathers was a statement made by Roland Selvidge’s attorney, William Bischoff, in regards to the ratification of GHURA’s credit card policy in which he stated that it was customary practice for the agency to poll board members in the interest of saving time.

The government said “that custom must change,” further pointing out that a clear violation lies in the act of locking the doors, not notifying the public and allowing Selvige to travel.

In the end, Superior Court Judge Anita Sukola denied the judgment of acquittal for all defendants, leaving it up to the jury to weigh the evidence.

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Jolene Toves
Jolene joined the PNC team in 2017, as a producer, co-anchor and investigative reporter covering law enforcement, courts and crimes. Notable coverage includes the Ehlert case, the Mark Torre Jr. trial, the Allan Agababa trial, exclusive pieces on the Life of a Drug Dealer/Addict, and Life behind bars...the story of Honofre Chargualaf and Kevin Cruz. In 2019, she was promoted to Assistant News Director and Lead Anchor. From 2015 to 2017 she served as Public Relations and Promotions Manager, for the Hotel Nikko Guam handling local radio and advertorial promotions, as well as produced and directed tv commercials for the hotel. Prior to this she worked with KUAM for three years as a reporter and segment host. She began her journalism career in 2012, working with Glimpses of Guam contributing to the Guam Business Magazine, R&R magazine, MDM magazine and the Marianas Business Journal.