Therese Terlaje books oversight to focus on erroneous releases, investigation into marshals
Legislative Judiciary oversight Senator Therese Terlaje is putting the courts in the hot seat - an oversight hearing focusing on the court's role in getting prisoners released from prison and what the court is doing about an ongoing FBI investigation into their marshals is on the way.
Senator Terlaje has scheduled an oversight hearing on the Judiciary of Guam for November 19. The senator says she will focus on two areas - how the court can aid the prison in cutting down the number of erroneous releases of inmates and detainees at the Department of Corrections, and an ongoing federal investigation into marshals at the court who allegedly traded sex for turning a blind eye to active warrants.
"There's no room left in this system for that type of corruption that's being alleged," said the policymaker.
Senator Terlaje tells KUAM that the court has confirmed it has received and investigated complaints about marshals - but they won't reveal the nature of those complaints or if they're related to testimony provided in federal court by an FBI agent. The agent said there's an ongoing investigation into marshals. She reiterates that this was the driving force for her inquiries to Judiciary of Guam Chief Justice Katharine Maraman.
"We started off to ensure that the public will have some confidence in our law enforcement and our judiciary and all of this because of the allegations that had been made," she explained. "They will not release any details regarding the investigation that they are doing, but I do know that they (the court) are in discussions with the FBI – so, I'm satisfied with that."
Meanwhile, Terlaje said she also has questions about the court's connection to erroneous releases at the department of corrections. The courts notify DOC when a judge has ordered the release of an inmate or detainee, and Terlaje says she wants to ensure this process is tightened up and the potential for human error is minimized.
"To explain to the public how they are handing getting this information to the department of corrections. I want to ensure that DOC - because we're coming down pretty hard on them - that they're actually able to get the most accurate information in the most efficient way possible," she told KUAM News.