Three Honolulu Men Arrested on Extortion Charge
|U.S. Attorney’s Office August 29, 2011|
HONOLULU—TORY WINWARD, 44, CURTIS SWANSON, 44, and JESSE YOSHINO, 30, all Honolulu residents, were arrested today on a charge of conspiracy to interfere with commerce by extortion in a criminal complaint unsealed in United States District Court today. The complaint and accompanying affidavit allege various threats and acts of violence in connection with the operation of a Waikiki bar and restaurant.
United States Attorney Florence T. Nakakuni said that the complaint is a result of a joint investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the Honolulu Police Department (HPD). The FBI and HPD arrested all three defendants this morning without incident. The complaint alleges that the defendants conspired to obtain money from the owners and operators of The Shack Waikiki as well as promoters of events at the establishment. According to the complaint and affidavit, the defendants engaged in a variety of acts in furtherance of the conspiracy, including:
- YOSHINO attacking and punching an owner in November 2010;
- SWANSON and WINWARD demanding money from a promotional company in May 2011; and
- WINWARD attacking and punching an owner in July 2011.
A criminal complaint is merely an accusation, and all defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty. Each defendant was scheduled to appear in federal court this afternoon, where Magistrate Judge Richard Puglisi was to set dates for hearings on the prosecution’s requests for detention without bail as to each defendant and preliminary hearings. If indicted and convicted of the charge, each defendant faces a maximum term of imprisonment of 20 years.
The prosecution is being handled by Assistant U.S. Attorney Thomas J. Brady.