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Man gets 16-month term for extortion


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POSTED: Wednesday, September 09, 2009

U.S. District Judge David Ezra sentenced former Aloha Stadium security chief Herbert Naone yesterday to 16 months in prison and fined him $10,000 for extorting and tipping off an Oahu nightclub owner of impending Honolulu Liquor Commission inspections.

Naone, 60, pleaded guilty in 2006.

His co-defendant, former Honolulu Liquor Commission night-shift supervisor James Rodenhurst, pleaded guilty in 2007. He is on supervised release after serving most of his 17-month prison term. Rodenhurst received 54 days' good-time credit, said Assistant U.S. Attorney Florence Nakakuni.

Naone and Rodenhurst extorted thousands of dollars from Corey Kaowili Jr., who owned Club Sin City (also known as Club Pearl Ridge) in Pearl City and Volcanoes Night Club on Nimitz Highway in 2004 and 2005, according to the indictment against them.

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Rodenhurst, a retired Honolulu police officer, informed Naone, his childhood friend and Kamehameha Schools classmate, of the inspections. Naone used the information to let Kaowili know when it was OK to violate liquor laws, according to the indictment.

In turn, Naone collected money from Kaowili and split it with Rodenhurst. Naone also threatened to shut down Kaowili's businesses if he did not pay up, the indictment said.

The case is among a number of drug and gambling prosecutions that resulted from a wiretap investigation of a former FBI employee.

Kaowili is serving a 46-month federal prison term for methamphetamine distribution.