Tuesday, March 9, 1999

Supreme Court upholds
ruling on Bishop minutes

By Rick Daysog


The state Supreme Court has upheld a lower court decision ordering the Bishop Estate to deliver minutes of more than five years of board meetings to the attorney general's office.

Five substitute Supreme Court justices yesterday denied writs of mandamus filed by trust attorneys asking them to direct Circuit Judge Bambi Weil to reconsider a December 1998 ruling.

The high court's order -- signed by acting Chief Justice Wendell Huddy and acting Associate Justices George Masuoka, Ronald Ibarra, Dan Kochi and Shackley Raffetto -- said the estate's attorneys did not demonstrate that they are entitled to the "extraordinary relief" they sought.

A writ of mandamus, which is a rarely used, asks a higher court to direct an official to reconsider or withdraw an action.

Weil in December ordered the estate's in-house lawyer Nathan Aipa to hand over boardroom minutes for the March 1993 through November 1998 period to the attorney general's office and to attorneys for Bishop Estate trustees Oswald Stender and Gerard Jervis.

The minutes, which filled two large boxes, were subpoenaed by Stender's lawyer, Douglas Ing, for the trial for the removal of fellow trustee Lokelani Lindsey. Stender and Jervis are seeking Lindsey's ouster for alleged breaches of trust and mismanagement of the estate-run Kamehameha Schools.

Ing said he wanted records to show whether Lindsey received board permission for some of her actions as trustee.

Aipa initially declined to give the records to Jervis and Stender on the ground that the minutes should be protected by attorney-client privilege.

Aipa later delivered the records to the two trustees but declined to give the minutes to the attorney general's office pending the outcome of the estate's appeal.

Bishop Estate Archive

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