Updated: Jun 10, 2020
By Johnnie Rosario
(Tumon, Guam) More than half of the funding distributed from the Community Benefit Fund was given to two organizations with direct ties to then-governor's chief of staff Matthew Deleon Guerrero.
According to documents disclosed to the legislative independent minority regarding the CBF, Imperial Pacific International (CNMI), LLC has thus far remitted a total $1,447,708 in CBF money to five organizations, businesses, and agencies upon request of Gov. Ralph Torres and his administration.
More than half of the proceeds, or a total $775,000, was given to two organizations, where Mr. Deleon Guerrero was a leader.
A letter from Mr. Torres to then-IPI chairman Marco Teng and then-CFO Ed Chen dated April 9, 2018 requested a $350,000 check from CBF funds to Million Dollar Scholars, a program under MYPros. MYPros, or Marianas Young Professionals, is the junior chamber of commerce and at the time was led by Mr. Deleon Guerrero. (NOTE: This organization is not related to the Saipan Chamber of Commerce).
Lina Dela Cruz from the Governor's Office sent to letter to Mr. Teng, Mr. Chen, and Mr. Deleon Guerrero on April 18, 2020, and Mr. Deleon Guerrero then forwarded the email to then-IPI vice president of legal affairs Viola Alepuyo.
A January 31, 2018 letter from Mr. Torres to the IPI officials requested $425,000 for Commonwealth Advocates for Recovery Efforts (CARE) organization, where Mr. Deleon Guerrero served on the Steering Committee.
Mr. Deleon Guerrero has since resigned his position as Mr. Torres's chief of staff, but ended up landing expensive contracts with the Commonwealth government.