Law enforcement removes Coco Palms camp - Honolulu, Hawaii news, sports & weather - KITV Channel 4

Law enforcement removes Coco Palms camp

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Coco Palms raid Coco Palms raid
KAPA’A, Hawaii -

Occupiers at the site of historic Coco Palms were ordered off the property Thursday. That comes about one month after a judge ruled they have to leave.

Authorities blocked off entry into the grounds, closing Kuamo'o Road in both directions as the sweep took place. 

According to state sheriffs, a 23-year-old woman was arrested on suspicion of trespassing.

A van could be seen driving off the property during the eviction while others parked outside the perimeter to talk to authorities. A law enforcement van was also seen leaving the area but it's unclear, if anyone was in it. 

The group living on the property claims ancestral rights to the land, and have been fighting developers in court but ultimately the court ruled against them. A ruling some say, they're still trying to fight.

"The action is pending and no final order or judgment has been entered. If the ejectment action is still pending and still no final order has been made. I don't know how this can happen," Noa Mau-Espirito, a man claiming ownership said.

Authorities, including state sheriffs, DLNR, the attorney general's office and Kauai Police executed the court order. 

Chief Darryl Perry said in a statement:

"Our law enforcement officers are required to uphold the laws of the County of Kaua'i, and protect and serve its people without prejudice."

Mayor Bernard Carvalho has been meeting with the occupiers for the past several months. He says while he understands the cultural significance of the he property, he adds "we must follow and respect the law." 

"We have other options that we've offered our Hawaiian community, maybe looking at other ways to take care of their passion, to take care of the land, water in a different locations maybe... Hopefully we can find the balance as in, you can do this here but not here and you can develop here... but malama this area," Carvalho said.  

The iconic Coco Palms was demolished back in 2016. The property is expected to reopen as a resort this year, according to its website.