Friday, October 3, 2003

Lindsey is spotted
at casino in Vegas

A motion alleges
the former Bishop trustee
violated an agreement

Former Bishop Estate trustee Lokelani Lindsey, granted a temporary stay from prison to provide around-the-clock care for her ailing husband on Oahu, has to explain to a judge why she was in a Las Vegas casino last month.

Lindsey was spotted in Oakland, Calif., and the California Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas by an IRS agent who had investigated her case.

She was convicted of federal money-laundering and conspiracy charges and was scheduled to begin serving a prison sentence next month. After the IRS agent spotted her, prosecutors filed a motion Wednesday in U.S. District Court in Nevada asking that she be required to report sooner.

Lindsey, who was sentenced in October 2002 to six months in federal prison for her role in a scheme to hide sister Marlene Lindsey's assets from bankruptcy court, had obtained three extensions totaling 11 months to delay her surrender. She told the court she needed to care for her husband.

A hearing on the motion is set for today before Chief Judge David Ezra in Honolulu. Lindsey's attorney is likely to ask for a delay because of a conflict in his schedule.

In a declaration to the court, Jerry Yamachika, a supervisory special agent with the IRS Oakland Field Office, said he saw Lindsey at the Oakland International Airport walking in the terminal area around 10 p.m. Sept. 18. The next day, he saw Lindsey walk past him at the California Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas while he was having lunch there.

"Obviously, if the reports of being in Oakland and Las Vegas are true, then she has obtained a delay in her surrender which is contrary to what is being observed," said assistant U.S. Attorney Les Osborne.

Lindsey's attorney, William Harrison, criticized the prosecutor's motion as "ridiculous."

"She takes a couple days respite and they're after her," he said.

Lindsey is not prohibited under bail conditions from going to Las Vegas because that is where her attorney and her case is, Harrison said.

Lindsey was in Las Vegas for a "few days" to meet with Harrison's co-counsel, David Chesnoff, to "tie up some loose ends" before she surrenders, Harrison said. At her husband's request, she also visited his 85-year-old sister who is ill.

Lindsey had three people caring for her husband while she was gone, he said. She had also taken the time off at the advice of her doctor, Harrison said.

At an August hearing, Ezra told Lindsey it was the last time he was granting her a continuance and ordered her to surrender Nov. 3. The government has opposed all three of her requests.

Marlene Lindsey also was sentenced to six months in prison. She completed her term and returned to Hawaii last month, said her attorney, federal deputy public defender William Domingo.


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