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Kidnapping victims escape their captors

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Two off-duty Honolulu Police Department officers helped capture a kidnapping suspect in Kaneohe over the weekend, according to a police affidavit filed yesterday in Honolulu District Court.

Big Island resident John Zackary Kutsu Toyofuku, 29, was to make his initial appearance in court today. He was being held on $75,000 bail at the Alapai cellblock on two counts of kidnapping and a firearms charge in connection with the bizarre case of two Windward men who were abducted but were able to escape over the weekend.

Police said two or possibly three other suspects are still being sought.

At about 6 p.m. Sunday, off-duty Detective Jeffrey Lee was driving along Likelike Highway in Kaneohe when he saw a white van stopped in the center lane of traffic, according to the affidavit. Lee saw two men—one of them Toyofuku—forcibly load a third man into the van.

Lee identified Toyofuku as the man who then went into the driver’s seat of the van and began driving toward Kamehameha Highway, the affidavit said. Lee turned his vehicle around and pulled alongside the van at Kamehameha Highway and motioned for the driver to pull over, but the driver refused, the affidavit said.

As Lee called for assistance, he saw one of the victims shoved out of the rear of the moving van, then get up and run to the car of a good Samaritan who stopped to help, the affidavit said.

The victim sustained multiple injuries to his body and face and had black plastic zip-ties around his wrist and gray duct tape around his neck, the affidavit said. He told police at the Kaneohe police substation that he and a friend, another man, had been kidnapped, beaten and held hostage.

A short time later police were called to investigate a suspicious white van parked along Ualani Place, near Hoomaluhia Botanical Gardens and about a mile from where the van originally was spotted, the affidavit said. The van was empty.

A resident in the area told an officer that a man tied up with duct tape was hiding in his home, while other area residents told police they saw two suspects running from the van, the affidavit said.

Meanwhile, off-duty police officer Douglas Lee, who was visiting a friend at nearby Awanene Way, was told by another resident that he had allowed a stranger to use his house phone and that he overheard him say he needed help, the affidavit said.

Lee met up with two other officers scouring the area, and the three located and detained one of the suspects, believed to be Toyofuku, in the yard of an Awanene Place resident, the affidavit said.

It was not known whether Jeffrey Lee and Douglas Lee are related.

Police said one of the victims was abducted Friday night and that he was taken to a Kailua home where he was threatened with further harm unless he lured another man there.

The second man showed up at the home Saturday and was then kidnapped, police said.

A police spokeswoman said detectives do not believe the victims were randomly selected, but she declined to provide other details.


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