In the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands and besieged casino operator Imperial Pacific International Holdings Limited has reportedly asked a federal court to allow a foreign investor to place slightly over of $5.59 million into a local bank account for its own benefit.

According to a report from the Marianas Variety newspaper, the move from Pacific International Property Management would permit the Hong Kong-headquartered casino firm behind the as yet unfinished Imperial Palace Saipan development to partially satisfy a judgement issued in favor of former contractor Pacific Rim Land Development.

Litigation lifeline:

The newspaper reported that Pacific Rim Land Development successfully sued Imperial Pacific International Holdings Limited in federal court amid claims that it was owed upwards of $5.65 million for work it carried out on the 14-story Imperial Palace Saipan up to September of 2018. However, the defendant purportedly subsequently claimed that it was suffering financially due to the temporary coronavirus-related closure of its sole venue and was struggling to satisfy payroll, utility and tax commitments.

Added appeal:

Michael Dotts, an attorney working for Imperial Pacific International Holdings Limited, reportedly told the newspaper that his client has appealed this legal judgement to the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit and also wants permission to subsequently return the incoming funds to Pacific International Property Management should this endeavor prove successful.

Dotts reportedly stated…

“Imperial Pacific International Holdings Limited now has an investor who has placed on deposit $5,599,975 in a [local] bank and who is willing to allow this account to be used or transferred to secure payment of the judgment pending appeal.”

Dangerous demand:

Marianas Variety reported that Dotts is moreover leading an effort that it hoping to overturn a court order that obliges his client to auction off its fleet of local vehicles as well as all of its gaming machines and construction equipment so as to help satisfy the debt owed to Pacific Rim Land Development. The attorney purportedly declared that such an action would ‘cause irreparable harm’ to Imperial Pacific International Holdings Limited and likely bring in far less than the assets’ fair market value.

Dotts reportedly told the newspaper…

“The gaming equipment is carried on Imperial Pacific International Holdings Limited’s audited books at a value of more than $20 million but the best estimate is that it will sell for $2 million. No one but my client can legally own these machines on Saipan so it will all need to be sent away. To re-open, my client will have to purchase all of its gaming equipment again.”