Former Honolulu prosecuting attorney Keith Kaneshiro and local businessman Dennis Mitsnuaga, along with Mitsunaga’s associates, are scheduled to go to trial in federal court in March.

Dennis Mitsunaga stands in line to enter US District Court..
Dennis Mitsunaga stands in line to enter the U.S. District Court in June. Cory Lum/Civil Beat/2022

During a telephonic hearing on Tuesday, Judge Wes Porter set the trial for 9 a.m. on March 21, 2023. A trial was initially set for this month but the parties mutually agreed to a continuance.

Kaneshiro is accused of wrongfully prosecuting Mitsunaga’s former employee at the businessman’s behest in exchange for $45,000 in campaign contributions between 2012 and 2016.

The former prosecutor and his campaign donor are charged alongside Terri Ann Otani, Aaron Shunichi Fujii, and Chad Michael McDonald, who were employees of Mitsunaga and Associates Inc., a local architecture and engineering firm.

All the defendants have pleaded not guilty to charges related to fraud, bribery and conspiracy.

The case is being prosecuted by San Diego U.S. Attorney Michael Wheat, who has been investigating corruption in Honolulu for years and won the convictions of former prosecutor Katherine Kealoha and her husband, former police chief Louis Kealoha in 2019.

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