Feb 25, 2009

Assault in Ngerbeched

KOROR (Palau Horizon) – A man who assaulted another man with a baseball bat was arrested on Friday morning.

Detective Lt. Aloysius Alonz of the Bureau of Public Safety Criminal Investigation Section said that the suspect was arrested for assault and battery with a dangerous weapon.

The victim was assaulted with a baseball bat on February 1 in Ngerbeched area.

The incident was investigated by Detective Willy Mays Towai.

Lt. Alonz said that also last week, a minor was arrested for burglarizing a residence in Dngronger.

The minor was arrested on February 16.

The minor was responsible for the burglary at a residence in Dngeronger where an assorted jewelry was stolen.

The value of the jewelry was estimated to be over $2,000.

Toribiong introduces FY2009 budget of $58.8 M

KOROR (Palau Horizon) – President Johnson Toribiong introduced a Fiscal Year 2009 budget of $60,287,987 but only appropriate $58,787,987.

Toribiong signed the bill Saturday night hours before he leaves for Taiwan for his first state visit.

Toribiong said to ensure the immediate needs of the country for the remainder of 2009 fiscal year, a unified budget must be in place and the proposal is aimed at maintaining the fund levels similar to the 2008 budget.

He said his administration is committed on expending only those funds made to the local treasury from local revenue collections until the Compact review with the United States have been completed.

He said that he will ensure a reduction in government spending because of the current economic climate locally and is hopeful that Congress will also contribute in passing legislation that will generate new revenues.

Remaining obligations he said can be addressed through a supplemental budget and in the 2010 budget.

The bill proposed appropriations of $34,104,286 for the operational and contingent expenses of the Executive Branch, while the Judicial Branch gets appropriation of $2,219,000 while the legislative branch gets $3,668,000.

The bill also stated that the remaining balance in the amount of $2,380,431 of the Palau Public Utilities Corporation (PPUC) be reverted back to the National Treasury to defray the shortfall for FY 2009 local allocations.

The bill also proposed appropriations of $2,782,558 to debt service; $1,546,000 to low-income household assistance; $500,000 for Compact Review fund, to finance the conduct of review and discussions regarding the Compact.

Palau is operating on a continuing budget authority for the first four months.

Toribiong said Vice President and Finance Minister Kerai Maruir worked hard on the budget bill to ensure that it is achievable and realistic.

Machete Style

KOROR (Palau Horizon) – A man was injured when assaulted with a machete early Sunday morning.

The incident occurred in Medalaii.

Bureau of Public Safety Criminal Investigation Section Detective Lt. Aloysius Alonz said the victim was transported to the hospital for treatment.

According to Lt. Alonz the victim is now out of danger.

The suspect has been identified but no arrest has been made yet.

Drunk Driving in Palau

KOROR (Palau Horizon) – Palau courts got tougher against drunk drivers as four men were sentenced last week to spend 20 days in jail as a result of DUI convictions.

The 20-day jail termare for first time offenders, repeat offenders will get a higher jail sentence in the past, first time offenders, only get a mandatory 24-hour jail term.

Public Defender Garth Backe said that the court is now imposing tougher penalties on intoxicated drivers.

Backe said first time offenders, will get this time the punishment for first time offenders for DUI is one year probation, 20 days in jail, $500 fine and 30 hours of community service.

The offender will also be barred from driving for a year and will have to undergo evaluation from Bedochel Treament Program.

Backe said a second offense will mean 40 days in jail and $1,000 fine.

Last week four people pleaded guilty to DUI charges, Judge Honora Rudimch sentenced them to 20 days in jail.

Backe said that DUI suspects can contest the charges and go to trial, suspects pleading guilty will get 20-days jail term automatically.

DUI suspects losing the case can get more than 20-day jail sentence, the statute can impose up to one year jail sentence against first time offenders.

Man charged with child sexual abuse

KOROR (Palau Horizon) – A man was charged with child sexual abuse, indecent assault and assault and battery for abusing a 13-year-old boy.

Jason Bodo Skebong was summoned to appear in court on February 24 at 1 pm to face his charges.

The police affidavit submitted in court stated that the victim went to the Criminal Investigation Section with his parents on November 26 to report the incident to the police.

The affidavit stated that on October 21, 2008, the defendant brought the victim to his apartment in Meyuns.

According to the affidavit, Skebong asked the victim to play hide-and-seek with him.

The affidavit further stated that when the defendant found where the victim was hiding, the defendant pushed the victim against the wall and started abusing him.

The affidavit stated that the defendant called the victim’s sister and apologized for what he had done to the victim.

Diaz introduces bill to eliminate MBTV competitor

KOROR (Palau Horizon) – Five Senators jointly authored a proposed Senate Bill which will manage the radio frequency spectrum and regulate the use of all radio frequencies and radio communication devices.
Senate Bill 8-19 was sponsored by Sens. Alfonso Diaz, Raynold Oilouch, Adalbert Eledui, Mlib Tmetuchl and Surangel Whipps Jr.

The bill also prohibits the issuance of broadcasting radio and television license any foreign government; any non-citizen, any corporation or any corporation of which any officer or director is a non-citizen; or any corporation directly or indirectly controlled by any other corporation of which any officer or director is a non-citizen.

The bill said that the use of radio communication devices mainly in the VHF and UHF bands and a number of radio stations including fixed and broasdcasting stations has increased significantly
The bill will establish necessary government control over the import, sale , offer for sale , lease offer for lease, manufacture , shipment and possession of radio communication equipment.

The measure will calls for maximizing the allocation and use of the spectrum and make adequate provision of the spectrum and provide a responsive and flexible approach to the needs of users in the spectrum.

The bill will also provide a regulatory environment that maximizes opportunities for the Palau communications industry in domestic and international markets and promote Palau’s interests concerning international agreements, treaties and convention relating to the radio communications or the radio frequency spectrum to keep up with the obligations under the Compact of Free Association agreement.

The 45-page document listed also licensing; violation when it comes to unlicensed operation of telecommunication devices, unlawful possession of radio communication devices.