Court confusion for anti-TMT demonstrators - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Court confusion for anti-TMT demonstrators

HILO, BIG ISLAND (HawaiiNewsNow) -

A mix-up is causing confusion for Thirty Meter Telescope demonstrators who were arrested on Mauna Kea earlier this month. 

22 of them showed up at District Court in Hilo on Tuesday to enter their plea, but most of them will have to wait until next week. Some received calls or notices about having their arraignment moved to Waimea on May 7, but their names still appeared on the Hilo docket. Judge Barbara Takase only allowed two people, who were unavailable next week, to enter not guilty pleas, according to an attorney for some of the activists.

"We were told to appear over in Waimea, yet we're also on the docket here, so there is some of that concern about the fact that they're jerking us around," said Moanikeala Akaka, a former Office of Hawaiian Affairs trustee.

An attorney for several of the demonstrators said the change appears to be a venue correction based on the location of the arrests.

"I think law enforcement essentially realized that where the arrest took place was inconsistent with where they originally noted the protectors to appear," explained attorney Dexter Kaiana.

Judge Takase did decide to refund the bail money for most of the demonstrators in court.

Meanwhile, TMT's main website is still the target of cyber attacks.

"TMT's website was attacked on Sunday, April 26, 2015, however it was back up within a few hours. Attackers have continued their attempts, which is causing the TMT website server to be periodically unavailable," said a statement from Sandra Dawson, TMT's manager of Hawaii Community Affairs. 

"While TMT has not yet determined a construction restart timeline, tremendous work in other areas of the project continues. Software development, building of mirrors and other technology advancements are being done by TMT partners in Canada, China, Japan and India," Dawson said. 

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