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Guam Hotel Wins Land Grab Case Against Former Senator

By Gina Tabonares

SAIPAN, CNMI (Marianas Variety, March 28) – The management of Hotel Nikko Guam won the land grabbing case against former Senator Theodore Nelson who claimed that the Tumon Bay property where the hotel is located was illegally acquired by the hotel owners.

Superior Court Judge Arthur Barcinas, in his ruling, granted the summary judgment filed by TNN Guam, the owner of Hotel Nikko, saying that the claims of Nelson with the Department of Land Management are declared void and cancelled while the plaintiff holds title through a legal purchase.

Nelson, one of the heirs of the original landowner of the Tumon Bay property, also known as Gogna or Estate 49, filed a criminal case against TNN Guam and Calvo Insurance Underwriters whom he accused of "swallowing" the property.

Gogna or Estate 49 in Dededo is where Hotel Nikko Guam, Gun Beach, Two Lovers Point and Fafae Beach are located.

Nelson claimed that Estate 49, which includes more than 11 hectares, was "mysteriously" consolidated with the adjacent Estate 431, which was sold to the hotel owners.

Calvo Finance Corp. purchased Estate 431 in 1972 during which Don Hotson made a land survey map.

According to Nelson, the 1972 survey of Hotson was enlarged and illegally took all of Estate 49.

He said the land scam succeeded when Calvo Insurance Underwriters was granted ownership of Lot No. 10113 or Estate 431, which illegally included Estate 49 as discovered on Oct. 12, 2005 by a registered surveyor.

TNN Guam Inc., through its lawyer Kevin Fowler, filed a damage suit against Nelson in October 2005 for alleged slander.

On June 1, 2006, the hotel management filed a motion for summary judgment to determine the real ownership of the land which was possessed by Don Luis De Cortez Torres on July 29, 1861.

There was confusion as to the status of Estate 49 between 1941 and 1978 when Calvo’s Insurance obtained a land parcel that included both Estate 431 and Estate 49.

Nelson argued that the U.S. government condemned the land for possible use for a power plant and subsequent to the plant being built at Tanguisson Beach.

The former senator complained that Calvo Insurance illicitly subsumed Estate 49 to Estate 431 without providing notice to the rightful owners of Estate 49.

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