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Suspects in gambling case plead not guilty

By Rob Shikina

LAST UPDATED: 07:46 p.m. HST, May 08, 2014

Five people pleaded not guilty to gambling charges in Circuit Court Thursday in connection with Products Direct Sweepstakes gaming machines.

Tracy Yoshimura, owner of PJY Enterprises, a distributor of the gaming machines, is charged with 257 counts. His bail was confirmed at $250,000.

The four others in court Thursday were Eugene Simeona Jr., his brother Clayton Simeona, Gary Danley, and Alexander Alejandro.

Judge Richard Perkins confirmed bail for Simeona at $200,000 and $50,000 for the remaining three. All posted bail except Alejandro, who appeared by camera from Oahu Community Correctional Center. He remains in custody on a separate Hawaii island warrant.

Four other people indicted will be arraigned on Monday, said Yoshimura's attorney Keith Kiuchi. Those four are: Quentin Canencia, Desiree Haina, Michael Miller, and Michael Madali. 

Last week, an Oahu grand jury returned a 414-count indictment charging them with various crimes including racketeering, gambling promotion, possession of gambling devices, and money laundering.

The indictment came one day after U.S. District Judge Leslie Kobayashi ruled that the Products Direct Sweepstakes machines are gambling devices.

Honolulu Prosecutor Keith Kaneshiro said at a news conference on Monday that the indictment came after a three-year investigation and the seizure of 200 Products Direct Sweepstakes machines at seven companies and 14 locations.

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livinginhawaii wrote:
Getting rid of the competition will really please the big gaming interests in Las Vegas. Will they be rewarding those who were involved in shutting down this operation?
on May 8,2014 | 01:09PM
gobows wrote:
its called campaign donations
on May 8,2014 | 01:27PM
HOSSANA wrote:
Let me put it this way. What was there to investigate!!! The machines were in the arcades and the customers and police knew it. Its not like it was in some clandestine hideaway. The liquor commission knew about the machines and even certified it to be place in the liquor establishments. So what was there to investigate. The only difference was the interpretation of the law and when the Prosecutor got the legal interpretation that the machines were illegal, then they raided the establishments and seized the machines and arrested the owners of the machines or the establishments. Keith Kaneshiro got his photo op but he really didn't do anything. It was good publicity for his office and those dummies standing behind him like mannequins like they did something important. Give me a break. They are trying to make it like a "big deal of an investigation" when it was nothing but chicken feed. Give me a break. This prosecutor has never been in a courtroom unlike the last prosecutor so he is just trying to milk the situation and get as much publicity as possible for the next prosecutor election.. How can the public buy all this shibai!!!
on May 8,2014 | 01:31PM
pro populus wrote:
boy, ignorance is most definitely bliss.
on May 8,2014 | 01:56PM
Hawaii5OhOh wrote:
And, what about Keith's promise long ago to solve the Diane Suzuki case? The police searched the suspect's (D. H.) yard on Kuleana Place in Pearl City (across from the Waiau power plant) a long time ago, and nothing happened. When they were digging by a newly constructed wall, the suspect's father got all agitated. However, no body was found, and the cops only found a woman's tutu in the general area, but they couldn't prove that it belonged to Diane. Also, the timing of the search of the dance studio, where they found lots of traces of blood in a bathroom, and the search of the suspect's yard, was about 6 months apart. A cop who had the authority had refused to give the cops permission to do the search of both locations at the same time. The timing difference gave the suspect's family 6 months to re-hide the dead body on their property. The suspect's family must have known people in the right places to be protected like that for all these years. The person got away with killing Diane and the suspect's family got away for covering it up. Next year will make 30 years since Diane went missing. So, Keith, what about Diane Suzuki? Are you part of the cover-up, too? Not even a man-slaughter charge against the suspect? Why?
on May 8,2014 | 03:14PM
noheawilli wrote:
I sure hope the jury members know about the rich history of jury nullification. If I'm on that jury, I am well aware of the power of the jury against an overbearing State.
on May 8,2014 | 02:14PM
handsomeguy wrote:
Any prosecutor can get a jury to indict a ham sandwich. It took Keneshiro three years to figure out that this was illegal? How long does it take him to investigate a real crime!! This guy is a loser and is only looking for publicity. Reminds me of our old friend Muffi.
on May 8,2014 | 03:33PM
TheFarm wrote:
gambling just brings out the best in people!
on May 8,2014 | 03:52PM
yhls wrote:
What a complete waste of time, resources, and taxpayers' monies.
on May 8,2014 | 07:24PM
LadyNinja wrote:
Hawaii5OhOh. I don't see what the relevance of this article has to do with the Diane Suzuki case? Please comment on the news article at hand, if you have a problem with the Diane Suzuki case write a letter to the editor or call HPD if you like but get with the point and issue at hand.
on May 8,2014 | 08:07PM
LadyNinja wrote:
Going to be an interesting trial for everyone. Let's see how Tracy Yoshimura portrays himself in court and what his lawyers do. Will be a most interesting case for sure!
on May 8,2014 | 08:08PM
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