Ex-guard, inmate convicted in Hawaii gang trial

HONOLULU (AP) — Jurors have convicted a former guard and an inmate of charges related to their roles in a Hawaii prison gang.

The jury reached its verdict Friday in a trial that has provided an inside look at the operations of the “USO Family” prison gang. Prosecutors say the gang started with a few Hawaii inmates needing protection in a mainland prison and has grown to at least 1,000 members involved in drug-trafficking, violence and tax fraud.

Jurors found former Halawa Correctional Facility guard Feso Malufau guilty of a conspiracy charge involving taking bribes from the gang to smuggle drugs and cigarettes into the prison.

Jurors found inmate Tineimalo Adkins guilty of leading a brutal gang attack on a fellow Halawa inmate in order to maintain his position as an USO.

Ted Sakai, Department of Public Safety Director, issued the following statement:

“These guilty verdicts are a result of our concerted effort to root out contraband and corruption and strengthen procedures. Thanks to partnerships with the FBI, DEA, IRS and the County Police Departments, we are arresting individuals who commit illegal activities within our facilities and letting others know that we will not tolerate it. We expect the highest levels of integrity and professionalism from our staff who work in the most challenging of environments every day. Our hard-working, dedicated employees as well as the public expect us to weed out these types of illegal, unsafe activities and we are continuing to do that through on-going investigations.”

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