KOROR, PALAU – On Monday, September 13, 2021, the President of the Angaur State Legislature, Leon Gulibert, was sentenced on Terroristic Threatening in the First Degree, Sexual Harassment, Labor Trafficking, violating the Code of Ethics and the Unified Tax Act.
Before sentencing, the Court reviewed the Pre-Sentence Report prepared by the Probation Department including statements from both victims, background information on the Defendant, and letters of support for the Defendant. In addition, the Court heard testimony from two witnesses, including one of the victims and also one of Defendant’s relatives speaking on his behalf. Defendant also addressed the Court asking forgiveness from the victims, his relatives, the community of Angaur, and the Court, and promising not to ever be before the Court again.
The Court stated, “no other human being should be treated this way” and that “Defendant says he is remorseful. Anyone who does that should be remorseful.” The Court went on to say she is required to balance the interests of the Republic and the victims in this case. And while the rights of the Defendant needed to be protected, not so much the interests of the victims (under the current law), the Court must consider what happened to them.
Defendant and Defense Counsel asked for leniency, and the Office of the Special Prosecutor requested Defendant be incarcerated for six months. The Court stated six months incarceration was warranted in this case, noting Defendant wasn’t an ordinary citizen, but a long-standing community leader who knew or should have known the laws and should have been the first one to say, “these are the laws.” As agreed by the parties in the Plea Agreement, the Court also ordered Defendant to be on probation for seven years following his incarceration during which time he will be required to make restitution to the victim, pay $28,000.00 in fines to the Republic, and have no contact whatsoever with the victims, directly or indirectly.
With agreement of the parties, the Court gave Defendant two weeks during which time he is expected to put his affairs in order before reporting to jail on September 27, 2021, to commence his six months of incarceration.