FILING OF INFO OR SEEKING OF INDICTMENT EXTENDED TO APRIL 5
By JOSEPH G. LARIOSA
(© 2018 Journal GlobaLinks)
CHICAGO (JGL) – Magistrate Judge Richard L. Puglisi of the U.S. District Court in Honolulu, Hawaii had reset the preliminary hearing
from March 7 to March 28 of the bulk smuggling case filed against Felina Sabino Salinas, the business manager of Filipino televangelist Pastor Apollo Quiboloy, to give parties more time to “examine evidence in this case, and to allow parties to investigate the charges against defendant and explore potential resolution of the case.”
In an order issued on March 5, Judge Puglisi said although the government has 30 days to “assert information and/or seek thru Grand Jury an Indictment against the defendant” (until) March 15,” he had acceded to the requests of both parties in the case to extend the filing of information or seeking an indictment up to April 5 so the “the ends of justice (are) served by permitting this extension (as they) outweigh the best interest of the public and defendant in a speedy trial.”
United States Attorney Kenji M. Price and his Assistant U.S. Attorney, Michael F. Albanese, are representing the government in the case while Salinas is represented by Rustam Barbee.
Ms. Salinas was arrested on Feb. 13 shortly after claiming ownership of her carry-on bag containing US$355,000 cash, 9,000 Australian dollars, and PHP1,000 found inside an outbound Cessna private jet, #N425PQ/C-680 at Honolulu International Airport “with the intent to evade currency reporting requirement under Title 31, United States Code, Sec. 5316.”
The jet was en route to the Philippines carrying two crew members and four passengers. The names of the crew members and four passengers were not identified in the complaint copy obtained by philamessenger.com.
Ms. Salinas, said to be from Davao City but lives in Kapolei, Hawaii, is free after posting $25,000 security bond and cash deposit of $5,000. Her passport was confiscated and her travel is restricted within the island of Oahu, where the Honolulu court is located.
According to the complaint filed by Special Agent Ann Mylene Haney of the Department of Homeland Security Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) before Judge Puglisi, Salinas “with the intent to evade currency reporting requirement under Title 31, United States Code, Sec. 5316, did knowingly conceal more than $10,000 in currency, namely approximately $355,000 in U.S. dollars and $9,000 in Australian dollars, in an article luggage and did attempt to transport such currency from a place within the United States to a place outside the United States.”
Haney said that on Feb. 13, 2018, the CBOP officers conducted an outbound inspection of a Cessna private jet, #N425PQ/C-680, at Honolulu International Airport.
All passengers and crewmen were escorted to the Signature Flight Support lounge area.
CBPO Joseph Barino provided the passengers CBP Currency Reporting Forms.
A passenger later identified as Felina Sabina Salinas declared she was carrying US$40,000 and Philippine P1,000 in U.S. Currency Reporting Form.
Supervisor CBP Officer Ernest Durante and CBPO Wendy Lau-Castro, then, inspected a black rolling carry-on bag located inside the plane. They also observed numerous black socks that were neatly bundled.
BUNDLES OF $100 BILLS
When CBPO’s Durante and Lau-Castro opened the multiple bundles of socks, they observed stacks of $100.00 bills contained within the socks. CBPO Durante, then, stopped the inspection and secured the plane. Durante, then, notified the Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) Honolulu Border Enforcement Security Task Force (BEST) Group Special Agents Ann Mylene Haney and James Chambers.
Salinas positively identified a blue purse, the black rolling carry-on bag that contained the currency, and a red backpack as her property.
After the agents counted the currency, the total amount inside the rolling carry-on bag was U.S.$335,000 and $9,000 Australian, which were not declared.
Salinas was charged with the offense of attempted bulk cash smuggling, which carries maximum of not more than five years imprisonment and “forfeiture to the U.S., any property, real or personal, involved in the offense, and any property traceable to such property.”
After posting a $25,000 bond and a $5,000 cash deposit, she was released from detention but she was prohibited from possessing any firearm, ammunition, destructive device or other dangerous weapon. She was requested to provide financial information and allowed to take part in voluntary stress and anxiety counseling as arranged by Pretrial Services. She must also cooperate in the collection of DNA sample if authorized by 42 U.S.C. Sec. 14135a.
During the detention hearing on Feb. 14, Salinas was held without bail being a “serious risk defendant will flee.”