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Hawaii man will return to San Diego to face murder charge

  • GEORGE F. LEE / GLEE@STARADVERTISER.COM
    Accused murderer Anthony Simoneau with his attorney Lesley Maloian appeared in the court room of Judge Richard Perkins on an extradition hearing Monday morning. He is a charged in the death of his previous wife Fumiko Ogawa.
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A Honolulu man wanted in California for murder waived extradition Monday in state court.

Honolulu police arrested Anthony Simoneau last Thursday based on a warrant from the district attorney in San Diego.

Simoneau, 46, is charged in San Diego with killing his Japanese-born wife Fumiko Ogawa in 2007.

The San Diego district attorney’s office said Simoneau will be transported back to San Diego to face the murder charge within 30 days.

For security reasons, an exact date of Simoneau’s extradition will not be given, San Diego officials said.

"I look forward to my day in court in San Diego and proving these charges erroneous," he said.

Circuit Judge Richard Perkins denied Simoneau’s request for bail pending his extradition to California. He said he will consider setting bail if Simoneau is still here on Oct. 7. 

Simoneau’s lawyer Lesley Maloian said she expects San Diego authorities will transport Simoneau to California before then. 

Ogawa’s body was found in a shallow grave in a desert near San Diego in January 2007. San Diego police said Ogawa was last seen alive two weeks earlier near the Point Loma home she shared with Simoneau.

Authorities were not able to identify Ogawa’s remains until 2011, after a family member in Japan provided them a DNA sample. Her family had reported Ogawa missing in November 2007.

Simoneau never reported his wife missing, telling people that she was in Japan caring for a relative or in Hawaii working on their new home.

San Diego police say Simoneau married Ogawa in 1996. They said he filed for divorce in 2002 but put it off after Ogawa inherited a significant amount of money from relatives in Japan. Simoneau then went on a spending spree, buying four luxury sport-utility vehicles, four boats, a motorcycle and  three other vehicles, police said.

In 2011, Simoneau moved to Hawaii and was arrested for felony theft for stealing a $395 piece of luggage from Nordstrom. 

San Diego official interviewed Simoneau while he was still in custody for the theft but did not charge him with his wife’s murder.

Maloian said she believes California officials were able to charge Simoneau last week based on new evidence or a new witness.

Simoneau pleaded guilty to theft in 2011 and a state judge sentenced him to probation and fined him $1,580.

Last month another state judge set aside the guilty plea and conviction and granted Simoneau a three-year deferral. That gave Simoneau the opportunity to have the theft charge permanently removed from his criminal record if he stayed out of trouble for the three years.  One of the conditions for staying out of trouble is not getting charged with another crimes.

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