'Ice' trafficker sentenced on Maui
WAILUKU » A man who had a clandestine methamphetamine laboratory in his Maui apartment has been sentenced to 20 years in prison.
Circuit Judge Joel August also ordered Rudy Z. Bernardino to serve at least two years behind bars before becoming eligible for parole.
Bernardino had pleaded no contest to first-degree methamphetamine trafficking.
Bernardino graduated from the Maui Drug Court in July 2005. He was arrested March 5, 2007, when vice officers executed a search warrant for his apartment.
Officers reported recovering more than an ounce of methamphetamine, as well as chemicals associated with the processing of methamphetamine. They also reported finding a loaded .45-caliber revolver and a glass smoking pipe.
Deputy Public Defender Wendy Hudson said her client started drug treatment and landed a job after his arrest.
Hudson said several family member were at Friday's sentencing to show their support for Bernardino, who had been held since August on $150,000 bail.
"Rudy has a very good chance of rehabilitation because of his family support," Hudson said. "He's going to come out of this as a very good father, son, brother and uncle."
Florida man guilty in isle tax case
A state judge found a Florida man guilty of filing false Hawaii state tax returns and collecting $71,438 during a period of two years.
On Feb. 25, Circuit Judge Richard Pollack ordered former Hawaii resident Christopher E. Burns to repay the $71,438 and sentenced him to six months in jail and five years probation. He had faced a $100,000 fine and three years in prison for each charge.
Burns, who had pleaded no contest, was released for time served and allowed to apply for probation jurisdiction in Florida.
A former military electrical engineer, Burns filed Hawaii resident income tax returns electronically for the years 2004 through 2006. In the first two years, he received refunds of $35,703 and $35,735 that were deposited electronically to a mainland bank account.
The Department of Taxation suspended his attempt to collect a refund for 2006.
The Department of Taxation said Burns was the first successfully prosecuted case against an out-of-state person who electronically filed and collected false income tax returns.
Ala Wai harbor's B dock closing
The Department of Land and Natural Resources is closing B dock at the Ala Wai Small Boat Harbor so it can be replaced as part of a $4.2 million improvement project.
The project also includes replacing docks C and D; transient docks; and the row 700 and row 500 docks.
B dock tenants were notified last week that they will be relocated to the new F dock that opened in January.
Body ID'd in 65-year-old crash
U.S. military officials have confirmed that the body of a man found on a California glacier last summer was that of Ernest Munn, who died in an Army training flight crash 65 years ago.
His remains will be returned to his family for burial near the family's hometown of St. Clairsville, Ohio. Munn's remains were identified last week by the Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command in Hawaii.
Scientists from JPAC and the Armed Forces DNA Identification Laboratory used mitochondrial DNA in the identification of Munn.
Munn, 23, was one of four airmen aboard the AT-7 trainer that was supposed to fly from Mather Field to Los Banos on Nov. 18, 1942. The plane veered off course and crashed into the 13,710-foot-high Mount Mendel glacier in Fresno County.
Munn's body was found in August by Seattle author Peter Stekel, who was doing research for his book about the plane crash, "The Final Flight."
Representatives of the U.S. Army met with Munn's family last week to coordinate his burial with military honors.
Also on board the flight were Leo Mustonen, 22, of Brainerd, Minn.; William Gamber, 23, of Fayette, Ohio; and John Mortenson, 25, of Moscow, Idaho. Mustonen's body was found in 2005. The other two bodies have not been found.
Police, Fire, Courts
COURTESY OF NICK LATULIP
Rescue workers, right, helped a capsized catamaran off the Diamond Head end of Waikiki around noon yesterday.
6 people safe after race boat capsizes
Six people were rescued yesterday after a 30-foot catamaran racing from Maui to Honolulu overturned off Diamond Head, according to a Coast Guard news release.
The catamaran Manju capsized half a mile from shore near the surf spot Suicides and Ewa of the Diamond Head Buoy at 12:03 p.m., the release said.
A bystander called 911.
Two lifeguards on jet skis and a fire department crew aboard a small boat transferred the Manju's crew to a Coast Guard 47-foot motorboat.
A Honolulu Fire Department helicopter monitored the transfer.
The Coast Guard's 47-foot boat towed the Manju in, dropping the rescued crew and their vessel off at Ala Wai Boat Harbor at 2:33 p.m.
No one was injured.
Suspect is sought in man's stabbing
Police are looking for a suspect wanted in the critical stabbing of a 20-year-old man in Halawa yesterday.
At about 1 a.m., the victim was at the bus stop at Kamehameha Highway and Kohumue Street when he allegedly was stabbed three times to his right side, police said.
The victim was taken to the Queen's Medical Center, where he remains in critical condition.
Man allegedly slashes relatives
Police arrested a 41-year-old man for allegedly attacking two relatives with a knife.
The suspect and a 23-year-old man were arguing at the suspect's Kamaio Place home in Mililani at about 2 a.m. yesterday. The suspect allegedly slashed at the man's head and shoulder. A 43-year-old man tried to intervene and was slashed on his arm, police said.
5 airlifted safely off Wahiawa hike
Honolulu firefighters airlifted yesterday five people who lost their way while hiking in Wahiawa.
After heading up the trail at the end of California Avenue, the group called firefighters at about 6:30 p.m. because they couldn't find their way out, said Honolulu fire Capt. Frank Johnson.
A fire helicopter picked up all five adults and dropped them off at Iliahi Elementary School before 8 p.m., Johnson said. No one was injured.