By Jacob Nakamura
(Tumon, Guam) Former Police Officer Boom Mantanona is seeking the identity of the government’s confidential informants that led to the charges of conspiracy drug distribution being filed against him.
His attorney Jay Arriola filed a Motion to Compel Discovery in which he indicated that “Since at least sometime in 2016, federal law enforcement officials have been reviewing material they allege shows Mantanona was involved in the protection of individuals distributing methamphetamine in Guam, and further that Mantanona received money in exchange for such protection. This investigation was supported by an undisclosed number of confidential informants who were both witnesses to, and at times participants in the alleged illegal conduct.”
Arriola indicated that the identities of the informants were not provided to them but their initials listed in the federal warrants are “V.R., E.A. and A.W.”
“On February 1, 2018, a conversation between the Defendant and a confidential source of information was recorded and provided to law enforcement,” Arriola wrote in the Motion to Compel Discovery. “On February 8, 2018 a conversation between A.W. and an informant was recorded and provided to law enforcement wherein the Defendant and his alleged conduct are discussed extensively. On April 27, 2018, a conversation between the Defendant and a confidential source was recorded and provided to law enforcement. On May 10, 2018, a conversation between the Defendant and a confidential source was recorded and provided to law enforcement.”
Mantanona’s defense attorney further writes, “The Government used some or all of the informants to bolster their allegations that Mantanona was close to A.W. and provided her protection from law enforcement in exchange for money. The informant(s)’ statements also bolstered the Government’s otherwise unsubstantiated allegation that Mantanona received sums of money, at different times from V.R. and A.W. These allegations were critical to the issuance of warrants to search information related to the Defendant’s phone, to track his vehicle’s movements, and to intercept communications between the Defendant and others.”
The Motion indicates that the individuals with the initials of “V.R., E.A. and A.W.” were involved in the illegal drug trade on Guam.
“Additionally … some or all of the informants also allegedly purchased methamphetamine directly from A.W., an individual the Government appears to allege Mantanona conspired to distribute methamphetamine with,” the Motion states. “Some or all of the informants also directly probed Mantanona related to alleged payments to A.W. These informant(s) therefore have direct knowledge of the alleged conspiracy and criminal conduct alleged. Some or all of the informants also allegedly directly requested Mantanona’s protection as he was providing to A.W. Therefore, these informants were both participants and material witnesses in the conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine that Mantanona is alleged to be a part of.”
Mantanona, his law and federal prosecutors appeared in federal court today to argue the motion. The judge denied his request and said it was moot since the U.S. Attorney’s Office released the relevant information to the attorney of Boom Mantanona.
His trial is set to begin August 11 of this year in the U.S. District Court of Guam.