Campaign investigator sued

Employees of an engineering firm under investigation for alleged illegal political donations to Honolulu Mayor Jeremy Harris have sued a top Honolulu police investigator.

Roy Tsutsui, Kenneth Sakai and Nancy Matsuno of R.M. Towill Corp. alleged that Maj. Daniel Hanagami violated their constitutional rights after they were arrested earlier this year.

The city was also named in the suit.

The three, who have not been charged with a crime, said Hanagami threatened them with further arrests after they refused to answer questions about their political donations to Harris.

The suit, filed by attorney Carl Varady, asks that a state judge issue an injunction against further arrests and further "publicity" or "humiliation" until a warrant is issued for probable cause.

Hanagami, who could not be reached for comment, is the HPD's top white-collar crime investigator.

State campaign records show that Tsutsui, Sakai and their spouses gave more than $15,000 to the Harris campaign during the past 10 years.

Police and city Prosecutor Peter Carlisle are looking into whether they were illegally reimbursed for the contributions.

A Star-Bulletin study found that R.M. Towill employees and their relatives made more than $42,000 in campaign contributions to the Harris campaign during the past decade.

Under state law, a donor can give no more than $4,000 to a mayoral candidate during a four-year election cycle.

R.M. Towill has received about $20 million in nonbid city contracts since 1996.


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