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A Pahoa woman accused by the federal government of conspiring to distribute methamphetamine and fentanyl on the Big Island is being detained without bail.
U.S. Magistrate Judge Wes R. Porter on Thursday ordered that 27-year-old Mikki Matsuyama should remain behind bars.
Porter considered a variety of factors before deciding Matsuyama is both a flight risk and a danger to the community, according to the court minutes.
A preliminary hearing for Matsuyama and her co-defendant, 31-year-old Elias Peace of Hilo, is scheduled for 9 a.m. Aug. 29 before Porter. Peace also has a detention hearing set for 9:30 a.m. Monday.
Matsuyama and Peace are both charged with one count each of conspiracy to possess with the intent to distribute methamphetamine and fentanyl and attempted possession with intent to distribute the drugs.
According to the complaint, on Aug. 5, Axel, a Hawaii Police Department drug-detection canine, indicated a parcel at the United Parcel Service facility in Hilo contained drugs, and police intercepted the package.
The parcel was a small, rectangular brown box with “The Home Depot” logo. The package was sent from the UPS Store in Santa Fe Springs, Calif., and was addressed to “Mikki Naru, 445 Desha Avenue, Hilo, Hawaii 96720,” according to the complaint.
The document states that inside the parcel was a black plastic container labeled “Harbor Freight Tools Tactical Ammo Box.” The box allegedly contained three sealed plastic bags with a total weight of just over 3 pounds of meth and a large quantity of blue pills with an M/30 imprint, weighing about 110 grams and testing positive for fentanyl.
Police obtained a search warrant authorizing the installation, use and monitoring of a GPS tracker in the package, as well as a search warrant for the Desha Avenue residence. Authorities replaced the seized meth with a similar amount of a “psedo-methamphetamine” and delivered the parcel to the carport area of the Desha Avenue home belonging to Peace’s mother.
At about 5:10 p.m. Aug. 8, Peace arrived at the Keaukaha home in a silver Mazda sedan with Matsuyama as a passenger, picked up the parcel and drove away. Police allegedly found the contents of the plastic container within the parcel strewn on the road fronting 396 Nahale-a Avenue in Hilo.
Peace was arrested by police on Aug. 10 at the Desha Avenue address. Matsuyama, a bit later, turned herself in to law enforcement in downtown Hilo.
According to documents, Matsuyama, after being read her rights, told police she previously received three UPS parcels with a pound of meth, and a fourth with 2 pounds of the drug, which she distributed.
She reportedly told authorities her supplier was a Mexican man she knows as “Jay” who instructed her to make payments for the drugs, by wiring money in increments of $1,000 to $2,000 to him in Mexico. She also allegedly said she owes Jay about $30,000 in drug debt.
Peace also reportedly talked to authorities, telling them he knew earlier this year that Matsuyama was selling drugs and they decided to ditch the contents of the box after spotting the tracking device and noticing the “drugs” looked and felt different.
According to documents, Peace said Matsuyama told him prior to the package being opened she thought it would contain a couple of pounds of meth and 1,000 fentanyl pills.
At the time of the alleged offense, Matsuyama was on state probation for a habitual property crime conviction. In addition, she has an active, unresolved felony narcotics possession case in Hilo Circuit Court, as well as a misdemeanor theft case filed Tuesday in Hilo District Court.
At the time of the offense, Peace was on a year of probation for a misdemeanor unauthorized entry to a motor vehicle conviction. He also has an active, unresolved misdemeanor criminal property damage case in Hilo District Court.
Email John Burnett at email@example.com.
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