Federal judge delays Kealoha's bank fraud trial
A federal judge moved the start date of the bank fraud trial against former Honolulu Deputy Prosecutor Katherine Kealoha, and her husband, former Chief of Police in Honolulu Louis Kealoha to 2019 because of an undisclosed medical condition.
HONOLULU - A federal judge moved the start date of the bank fraud trial against former Honolulu Deputy Prosecutor Katherine Kealoha, and her husband, former Chief of Police in Honolulu Louis Kealoha to 2019 because of an undisclosed medical condition.
The medical records are sealed. Judge Richard Puglisi ruled that her "condition" means she wouldn’t be able to be physically be present for the trial and, therefore, wouldn’t be able to defend herself.
"We're happy that the judge listened to all our arguments and are happy that he decided that in the interest of a fair trial, the trial should be continued," said Katherine Kealoha's attorney, Cynthia Kagiwada.
Both Katherine and Louis face bank fraud charges: money mismanagement for minors under Katherine's care. It was supposed to begin November 14th. A new trial may start as early as February 2019, but will she be ready by then?
"At this time, we don't know because we don't know what this new trial date is going to look like," said Kagiwada.
The motion to move the start date was fought by prosecutors who claim Katherine was “faking” her illness. They said this isn't the first time. In a public court filing, prosecutors claim she "previously attempted to manipulate others, but claiming to suffer from serious medical infirmities." But that document's been removed from the record. Judge Puglisi calling it "improper" for prosecutors to publicly mention her medical condition.
There is another trial against the Kealoha's scheduled to begin in March. That one involved a mailbox theft and the cover up, and pulled in four other Honolulu police officers.
Thursday, attorneys representing the Kealoha's in the bank fraud case and the prosecutors will be joined by the attorneys of those HPD officers to discuss the new start date for the first trial, and possibly moving the date of the second trial.