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Federal judge approves court-appointed counsel for Kealohas - Honolulu, Hawaii news, sports & weather - KITV Channel 4

Federal judge approves court-appointed counsel for Kealohas

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HONOLULU -

A high profile public corruption case will soon be costing tax payers.

Former Honolulu police chief Louis Kealoha and his deputy prosecutor wife Katherine will be receiving court appointed attorneys. 

Up until this point, the Kealohas would've had to pay for their attorneys: Myles Breiner, Kevin Sumida and Gary Modafferi.

But starting next week, the public will be paying for the couple's new attorneys.

Louis and Katherine Kealoha walked out of Federal Court Thursday afternoon, after U.S. District Judge Michael Seabright met with the couple behind closed doors to discuss their finances.

Seabright announced to the courtroom, "case will require substantial expenditures to defend" and the Kealoha's current "debt exceeds their assets."

The court granted the Kealoha's attorneys motion to be taken off of the case because they feared they wouldn't get paid.

The Kealoha's assets have been frozen by the federal government.

Their attorneys also requested for the court to appoint mainland counsel going forward, but Seabright rejected that request saying they'll choose new counsel for the Kealoha's from a list of Hawaii attorneys.

Seabright expects the Kealohas to have new court appointed attorneys as soon as next week Monday or Tuesday. 

Once appointed, attorneys Breiner, Sumida and Modafferi would be relieved of the case.

As of now, tax payers will pay the whole thing but there are scenarios where the Kealohas would be on the hook for partial payment.

Seabright told the couple in court Thursday, if their financial situation changes and somehow come across a substantial amount of money, they'd have to report it, then the court would re-evaluate their situation.

There was also talk in court about the Kealoha's selling their home in Hawaii Kai to help them clear debt so it is possible for their financial situation to change if they decide to sell their house.

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