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Copper thieves strike again at Moanalua Gardens

By Gary Kubota

LAST UPDATED: 5:58 p.m. HST, Apr 15, 2014

Copper thieves swiped about 50 feet of Hawaiian Telcom's copper cable in an underground manhole in the Moanalua Gardens area sometime between Monday night and Tuesday morning. 

Thieves broke through a manhole welded shut to prevent copper theft, and sawed through two cables. 

The severed cables had the potential to cause telephone and internet service disruption to more than 600 Hawaiian Telcom customers, according to  a news release issued by Hawaiian Telcom.

The incident marks the fourth time thieves have stolen copper cable at Moanalua Gardens, despite theft-prevention measures.

Hawaiian Telcom crews are now working to replace the stolen cables by splicing a 1,200 pair section and a 600 pair section in the manhole. This work is slated to be completed by the end of this week.

Stealing copper wire weighing a pound or more is a class C felony in Hawaii.

Hawaiian Telcom spokeswoman Ann Nishida Fry said the number of copper thefts affecting Telcom total about 20 a year, and the number is growing. Hawaiian Telcom is asking the public to call 911 to report suspicious activity to police, or call Hawaiian Telcom security at 643-7111.

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