Council OKs legal fees for embattled Honolulu prosecutor

HONOLULU — The Honolulu City Council has approved hiring a law firm to represent the city’s prosecutor against an impeachment effort launched when he became a target in a federal corruption investigation.

The council voted 5-2 Friday to pay up to $75,000 to represent Prosecuting Attorney Keith Kaneshiro.

Kaneshiro is on paid leave after the state attorney general called for him to step down because he received a letter from the Justice Department informing him he’s an investigation target. He earns about $171,000 annually.

The investigation has resulted in indictments against former Kaneshiro deputy Katherine Kealoha, her husband ex-Honolulu police chief Louis Kealoha and current and former officers.

The target letter prompted a businessman to file the impeachment petition against Kaneshiro. A court hearing on the petition is scheduled for Monday.

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