State roundup for November 17


State: Reinstate insurance plans

HONOLULU (AP) — Hawaii’s insurance commissioner is requesting insurance carriers continue health plans that faced non-renewal by the end of the year because they don’t comply with the federal health care law.

State Insurance Commissioner Gordon Ito said Friday his request follows President Barack Obama’s decision to allow states and insurers to choose which plans to continue as the Affordable Care Act is implemented.

Insurance carriers now have the option to apply to the Insurance Division to have the existing plans continue. Those plans would not be available on the Hawaii Health Connector, and therefore not eligible for tax credits.

Men guilty of meth trafficking

HONOLULU (AP) — Two brothers from Waialua have been convicted of methamphetamine trafficking.

The U.S. Attorney’s office announced that a federal jury on Thursday found Jacob Drummondo-Farias guilty of conspiring to distribute and possess, with intent to distribute, 50 grams or more of meth. His brother and co-defendant Joshua Lew pleaded guilty to the same charge.

Prosecutors say the brothers agreed with others to distribute meth that was mailed to Honolulu from California. Prosecutors say they orchestrated the shipment of 850 grams of meth, which was intercepted at the Honolulu airport by law enforcement.

Lew faces up to life in prison with a mandatory minimum term of 10 years. His brother also faces life but because of a previous drug conviction, he faces a mandatory minimum term of 20 years.

Mall rampager gets five years

LIHUE, Kauai (AP) — A 32-year-old Lihue woman who took a baseball bat to an ATM and shop windows at Kukui Grove Center has been sentenced to five years in prison.

Patricia Lewis was sentenced Wednesday in 5th Circuit Court and ordered to pay more than $4,500 in restitution.

She pleaded no contest Aug. 20 to criminal property damage for events on Dec. 19, 2012. Investigators say she used an aluminum baseball bat to smash the ATM and a glass door and window.

Lewis apologized but Judge Kathleen Watanabe says the court can’t ignore prior convictions in determining whether she could reoffend.

 

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