OHA Trustee Apoliona, among Others, Reported for War Crimes by Filipino Citizen

Press Release

KAILUA, O‘AHU, August 26, 2013 — On August 15, 2013, a complaint for war crimes was filed with the Philippine government on behalf of my client, Mrs. Maria Alma Pilapil, pursuant to Philippine Republic Act no. 9851 (2009), known as the “Philippine Act on Crimes Against International Humanitarian Law, Genocide, and Other Crimes Against Humanity,” with the Philippines Consulate in Honolulu. The complaint alleges that the war crimes of “unfair trial” and “pillaging” were committed against Mrs. Pilapil by Circuit Judge Ronald Ibarra, Bank of Hawai‘i officers and directors Peter M. Biggs, Sharon M. Crofts, Wayne Y. Hamano, Kent T. Lucien, Mark A. Rossi, Mary E. Sellers, Donna A. Tanoue, Haunani Apoliona, Mary G.F. Bitterman, Mark A. Burak, Michael J. Chun, Clinton R. Churchill, David A. Heenan, Peter S. Ho, Robert Huret,  Martin Stein, Donald M. Takaki, Barbara J. Tanabe, Raymond P. Vara, Jr., Robert W. Wo, and Alton T. Kuioka. Also named in the complaint is Mitzi A. Lee, attorney for Bank of Hawai‘i, attorney Robert D.S. Kim, Kevin Shiraki, Jeannie Jorg Domingo, and Lieutenant Patrick Kawai of the State of Hawai‘i Department of Public Safety Sheriff’s Department, Hawai‘i Division, to include his superiors and deputies.

When Mrs. Pilapil, also known as Maria Alma Barbaso Schwartz, wife of Stephen Michael Schwartz, a U.S. citizen, took out a loan from Bank of Hawai‘i with her husband, Bank of Hawai‘i required the Schwartz’s to purchase a title insurance policy in the amount of the money borrowed, which was $1,499,999.00. The Schwartz’s paid a premium of $3,735.00 to Title Guaranty of Hawai‘i. Title insurance insures the accuracy of the title search done by Title Guaranty of Hawai‘i, and if the search is inaccurate and the title to the property is defective, the insurance pays off the balance of the loan. Evidence of a defect in title produced by Laulima Title Search and Claims, LLC, was provided to Bank of Hawai‘i, but it was willfully disregarded and the foreclosure proceedings continued.

A motion to dismiss was filed during the foreclosure proceedings based on evidence that the court is unlawful, under both international law and United States constitutional law, as a result of the United States illegal overthrow of the Hawaiian Kingdom government on January 17, 1893, and its prolonged and illegal occupation since the Spanish-American War in 1898. Mitzi Lee, attorney for Bank of Hawai‘i, provided no rebuttal evidence, and, without cause, Judge Ronald Ibarra denied the motion. This action constituted an “unfair trial” and a criminal complaint was filed with the Hawai‘i Police Department and the International Criminal Court. On June 29, 2013, Bank of Hawai‘i “pillaged” my clients’ property with the assistance of Lieutenant Kawai of the State of Hawai‘i Sheriff’s Department. The eviction was based on an unlawful order stemming from a court that did not have lawful authority in the Hawaiian Islands. My clients’ possession was valued at $2.2 million dollars.

In 2009, the Congress of the Philippines enacted the Philippine Act on Crimes Against International Humanitarian Law, Genocide, and Other Crimes Against Humanity. In this Act the “State shall exercise jurisdiction over persons, whether military or civilian, suspected or accused of a crime defined and penalized in this Act, regardless of where the crime is committed, provided…the accused has committed the said crime against a Filipino citizen.” The war crimes of “unfair trial” and “pillaging” are punishable offenses under the Act, and since the alleged crimes were committed outside of Philippine territory the alleged perpetrators are subject to extradition to the Philippines under the 1994 U.S.-Philippines Extradition Treaty (1994 U.S.T. Lexis 185). According to the Act:

“The most serious crimes of concern to the international community as a whole must not go unpunished and their effective prosecution must be ensured by taking measures at the national level, in order to put an end to impunity for the perpetrators of these crimes and thus contribute to the prevention of such crimes, it being the duty of every State to exercise its criminal jurisdiction over those responsible for international crimes.”

Once the warrant for war crime(s) have been charged, my client demands the alleged perpetrators be extradited to the Philippines for prosecution to the full extent of the law.

Proclamation by the acting government of the Hawaiian Kingdom


August 21, 2013

Whereas, the Hawaiian Kingdom existed as an independent State in the nineteenth century, as acknowledged by the Permanent Court of Arbitration in 2001 by dictum in Larsen v. Hawaiian Kingdom, and that international law provides for the presumption of the Hawaiian State’s continuity, which may be refuted only by reference to a valid demonstration of legal title, or sovereignty, on the part of the United States, absent of which the presumption remains;

Whereas, because there exists no valid demonstration of legal title, or sovereignty, on the part of the United States over the Hawaiian Islands, all United States government agencies operating within the territory of the Hawaiian State that was established by the United States Congress, which includes the State of Hawai‘i and County governments, are self-declared and their authority unfounded;

Whereas, Hawaiian subjects took the necessary and extraordinary steps, by virtue of the legal doctrine of necessity and according to the laws of the country and international law, to reestablish the Hawaiian government as it stood on January 17, 1893, in an acting capacity on February 28, 1997, in order to exercise the country’s preeminent right to self-preservation during an illegal and prolonged occupation by the United States of America since August 12, 1898;

Whereas, for the past 13 years, the acting government of the Hawaiian Kingdom has been vested with a prescriptive special customary right under international law to represent the Hawaiian State during this prolonged and illegal occupation by virtue of the legal doctrine of acquiescence, as well as explicit acknowledgment by the United States of America, and other States, of the acting government’s de facto authority before the Permanent Court of Arbitration, the United Nations Security Council, and the United Nations General Assembly;

Whereas, a Brief on the Continuity of the Hawaiian State and the Legitimacy of the acting government of the Hawaiian Kingdom can be accessed online at: http://hawaiiankingdom.org/pdf/Continuity_Brief.pdf.

Now, therefore, by virtue of the authority vested in the acting government, we do hereby declare, proclaim, and make known as follows:

  1. The laws are obligatory upon all persons, whether subjects of this kingdom, or citizens or subjects of any foreign State, while within the limits of this kingdom, except so far as exception is made by the laws of nations in respect to Ambassadors or others. The property of all such persons, while such property is within the territorial jurisdiction of this kingdom, is also subject to the laws (§6, Civil Code). The Hawaiian Civil Code, Penal Code and the 1884 and 1886 Session Laws can be accessed online at http://hawaiiankingdom.org/constitutional-history.shtml.
  2. The acting government of the Hawaiian Kingdom reclaims its sovereignty over all property within the territorial jurisdiction of this kingdom by virtue of its special customary right to represent the Hawaiian State during an illegal and prolonged occupation by the United States of America.
  3. As a result of Hawaiian law not being complied with since January 17, 1893, all titles to real estate within the territorial jurisdiction of this kingdom are invalid and void for want of a competent notary public and registrar for the Bureau of Conveyances (§1249, §1254, §1255, §1262, §1263, §1267, Civil Code). Remedy for these defects will take place in accordance with Hawaiian Kingdom law and the international law of occupation.

Peter Umialiloa SaiActing Vice Chair of the Council of Regency, and Acting Minister of Foreign Affairs

Archives Takes Wraps off 1898 Senate Transcript: Secret Debate on U.S. Seizure of Hawaii Revealed [Feb. 1, 1969]


Honolulu Star-Bulletin, Saturday, February 1, 1969

WASHINGTON (AP) – Now it can be told—what happened during the longest of three Senate sessions during the Spanish-American War, a debate over whether to take over Hawaii.

The debate of nearly three hours on that day—May 31, 1898—and in two secret sessions the previous month had remained locked up until last week. Then at the request of a historian who noted gaps in the Congressional Record, the Senate passed a resolution authorizing the National Archives to take the wraps off the debate transcript.

The government’s only explanation for the long suppression of the debate records is that they had been long forgotten.

THE SECRECY WAS clamped on during a debate over whether to seize the Hawaiian Islands—called the Sandwich Islands then—or merely developing leased areas of Pearl Harbor to reinforce the U.S. fleet at Manila Bay.

Sen. Henry Cabot Lodge, grandfather and namesake of the current chief U.S. peace negotiator in Paris, had the floor. He was pleading for all war measures and particularly for the dispatch of reinforcements to Adm. George Dewey who already had destroyed the Spanish fleet in Manila Bay.

But before Lodge could press his case for the need of Hawaii as a rear base, Sen. David Turpie of Indiana demanded and got the Senate chamber cleared. Even the official reporter of debate was expelled for five minutes.

Study of the transcripts is unlikely to add more than a minor footnote to history, for as Lodge contended during the debate:

“I do not know anything that would give them (the enemy) any information,” because “there is nothing, nothing not already in the newspapers.”

LODGE COMPLAINED BITTERLY at the time about the secrecy, but his peers went along with Turpie and Sen. Georg Gray of Delaware, who questioned the “propriety” of public utterances “addressed to the ears of the enemy.”

Going further, Sen. Eugene Hale of Maine declared that the Senate is “the last place in which to discuss what shall be done about war,” for its word “goes on the wing of the lightning to every part of the globe.”

Lodge said Dewey’s need for reinforcement was urgent because “great and powerful interests in Europe (Paris bankers holding Spanish loan bonds) are directly interested in having Manila wrested from him and his fleet destroyed.”

Sen. William Stewart of Nevada saw “no possible secrets involved in the discussion of the annexation of the Sandwich Islands.” He contended the Navy required a coaling station for its ships and a “residing place” for the men enroute to the Philippines.

PEARL HARBOR, ALREADY UNDER LEASE, Stewart argued, wouldn’t be much use until costly dredging operations opened the entrance channel. “Either we must have the Sandwich Islands,” he declared, “or the administration must recall Dewey.”

The senate was unimpressed by the argument of Sen. Richard F. Pettigrew of South Dakota that the great circle route to Manila, skirting the Aleutian Islands, was 500 miles shorter than the route through Honolulu.

He argued that many warships and fortifications could be built with $10 million proposed to be “thrown away in the interest of a few sugar planters and adventures in Hawaii,” and asked: “Why embarrass that feeble republic, or monarchy, or oligarchy or whatever it is, with our presence?”

Sen. John T. Morgan of Alabama was concerned about the bubonic plague, cholera, yellow fever, small pox and “all the horrible diseases to which humanity is incident” prevailing in the Philippines. Therefore, “we cannot refuse to men going there a stopping place on the salubrious islands of Hawaii.”

Sen. Benjamin Tillman of South Carolina had the last word about the islands, saying “is not Hawaii lying there praying to the United States: ‘Please come and swallow me and pay the $4 million you promised.’”

THE UNITED STATES ANNEXED the Hawaiian Islands five weeks after the debate. But before the Senate reopened its doors that day, Morgan steered the discussion back to Cuba, the original cause of the war with Spain.

The first secret session, April 25, 1898, involved technical and emotional debate over wording of the declaration of war and why it or some accompanying resolution did not formally recognize the independence of Cuba or at least declare the Cubans to have the rights of belligerents in the conflict.

THE SENATE ENDED UP BY ACCEPTING the House passed version reading that “war and the same is hereby declared to exist and that war has existed since the 21st of April”—four days earlier.

Dropped from the final declaration was a Senate proposed tagline requiring the administration to “prosecute said war to a successful conclusion.”

Sen. Stephen White of California joined the unanimous vote for war “even with that mild prevarication” about when the war started.

1893 Executive Agreements and Their Profound Impact Today

On March 15, 2013, at the Keauhou Sheraton Hotel on the Island of Hawai‘i, Dr. Keanu Sai gave a presentation that provides a political science perspective of Hawaiian history that incorporates law on the repercussions of the illegal overthrow of the Hawaiian Kingdom government in 1893, and the effect of two executive agreements between Queen Lili‘uokalani and President Grover Cleveland that mandated the United States to administer Hawaiian law, restore the government, and thereafter the Queen to grant amnesty to the insurgents. The United States seizure of the Hawaiian Islands since 1898 and its willful violation of these agreements and international law have now given rise to war crimes that have and continue to be committed on a monumental scale. The presentation was sponsored by the Keauhou-Kahalu‘u Education Group, Kamehameha Schools, University of Hawai‘i at Hilo Kīpuka Native Hawaiian Student Center, Eia Hawai‘i Lecture Series, Keauhou Beach Resort, and The Kohala Center.

Dr. Sai received his Ph.D. in political science from the University of Hawai‘i at Manoa specializing in international relations and public law. His research specifically addressed the legal and political history of the Hawaiian Islands since the eighteenth century to the present. Dr. Sai has authored several law journal articles on the topic of the continuity of Hawaiian Kingdom as a sovereign state, is the author of a new history book titled “Ua Mau Ke Ea: Sovereignty Endures,” and served as lead agent for the Hawaiian Kingdom in arbitration proceedings before the Permanent Court of Arbitration, The Hague, Netherlands, in Lance Larsen v. Hawaiian Kingdom (1999-2001).

Speech of Dr. G. P. Judd at the Celebration – July 31, 1865

A1C65120A38111DCTwenty years ago, Kauikeaouli emerged from the grounds of Kanaina; he and Kekuanaoa, Paki, Keoniana, Kanoa, Kivini, and some foreigners on horseback, and they rode for Kulaokahua.

Admiral Thomas was there with his troops and mounted guns in all his grandeur, and also there were the young chiefs, and a crowd of natives and foreigners awaiting the arrival of the King.

When he arrived, Admiral Thomas came to him holding the Hawaiian flag in his hands. The King and all his people dismounted and the Admiral came and opened the flag to the wind, and then gave it to Kauikeaouli’s flag bearer.

Right then, 21 mounted guns fired as a salute to the Flag, and the British flag was lowered on Puowaina, while the Hawaiian flag was drawn up again, whereupon 21 guns of Puowaina sounded. Then the British flag was pulled down at the Fort and the Hawaiian flag was raised, so the Fort fired a 21 gun salute, followed by 21 guns from the ship Carysfort, 21 from the Dublin, 21 more from the Hazzard, and then the American ship Constellation fired a 21-gun salute. When that was over, the 21 mounted guns fired a salute in honor of the King.

The British soldiers stood in a circle saluting the King, and when that was done the King returned to the palace. At 3[1] o’clock the King, his soldiers and the crowd of people all went to the church of Kawaiaha’o and gave thanks to God for his grace in restoring the sovereignty of the Nation.

At three o’clock, the King went aboard the ship Dublin to a dinner hosted by the Admiral, and when the Carysfort saw the King’s flag on the launches, a 21-gun salute was fired, followed by 21 guns from the Hazzard, then the Dublin, and then a final 21 gun salute came from the Constellation.

When the dinner on board the ship was finished, the King and his retinue came ashore and the Dublin fired a salute, followed by the Carysfort, then the Hazzard and the Constellation, 21 guns each.

The next day the great feast at Luakaha was held for the Admiral, and Kauikeaouli decided that the 31st of July would become a holiday for the Nation and the people. What was the reason for this great festivity?

What was the reason for the resounding of 315 guns, startling the mountains and roiling the seas? It was because the flag, once pulled down, had been raised up again.

I should perhaps recount the source of this entanglement. It was the desire of British foreigners here ashore for Britain to take this island chain. It would not then remain independent, so Consul [Charlton] sought to petition the Admiral, whereupon the Admiral ordered Lord George Paulet to sail here to Hawaii and do everything according to the terms of the Consul, and he intended to take the land by war, but, the King gave in advance the sovereignty of the land to the two of them, so as to escape battle, in the manner of a mortgage until such time as the British government could decide about the entanglements that the foreigners had made up.

The Admiral perhaps recognized his own entanglement because of the transfer to George Paulet under Consul, therefore he was concerned and restored the sovereignty of the Nation.

Therefore, the chiefs and the common people are joyful on this day because of the victory of righteousness over wrong, and the religious ones praise God, their Savior, for allowing them not to live as prisoners under Britain. Glory! Glory!! Glory!!!

Speech of His Highness William Charles Lunalilo at the Celebration – July 31, 1865

LunaliloLadies and Gentlemen:

This is the day we commemorate the return of the Hawaiian Flag by Admiral Thomas. Twenty-two years have passed since that officer arrived at these shores, restoring the Flag to our King and the nation. Our hearts were filled with joy on that day that is forever remembered, and many tears were shed, not from sadness, but from joy. How very different from the previous February 25. I recall what I saw as I stood in the grounds of the old Fort with our current King and his younger brothers, now deceased; we witnessed our Flag being brought down. On that day, these islands were surrendered to the Crown of Great Britain, and on that day the flying star flag of Albion waved victoriously over these Islands. Many here probably heard the short speech King Kamehameha III gave regarding that event.

“Attention, Nobles, people, and subjects from my ancestors’ time, as well as those of foreign lands! Pay heed all of you! I say to you all that I am in distress as a result of predicaments into which I have been drawn without cause, therefore I have surrendered the sovereignty of our land, and so you should all heed that! However, my reign over all of you, my people, and your rights, will continue because I am hopeful that the sovereignty of the land will yet be restored, if my actions are just.”

That speech by the King to his people was short, but important nonetheless. He expressed his sadness about what he had seen. There were many tears that day. Those were dark and fearful days. The entire nation mourned during those months of investigation, thinking that the government might have been lost for all time to the hands of a foreign power. For five long months all remained calm, as at the outset, and on the 31st of July, the day we now commemorate, we saw “the flag for which they had dared for a thousand years to valiantly face war and the wind” brought down by one of the own sons of England.

As Doctor Gulick clarified, “America gaining independence was not something that simply came to be, nor was it some short-lived foolishness. Instead, it was something that came about and will be remembered for centuries, and is something that will continue on into the future.” The same is true of this, our restoration day, it is not something that just came to be. Admiral Thomas did not simply come here regarding trouble that was occurring and seek the facts as they have done before, but he heard, from a high-level source, of actions happening between this Government and those under its domain. He carefully considered it, and the setting was perfectly clear to him prior to his sailing here and his return of the land to its King who had acted justly. The people (though I speak as an individual) had acted appropriately, were thoughtful and vigilant in the workings of the Government, and if they had spoken or acted irresponsibly, they would certainly have incurred the wrath of the opposition. Something real that was witnessed was whether the assets that the nation had entrusted to someone in a certain department would continue to exist. It was assumed they had not. The books of every kind, which were critical, were taken away from the offices and hidden, then taken to the Royal Crypt, there to be left among the residents of that eerie place. Night and day, the work was carried out there, and the casket of Good Ka’ahumanu became the desk for writing.

But the sun rose again, brighter than ever. The hopes of the good and benevolent Kauikeaouli were fulfilled (you will likely never forget the short speech he gave with the wishes for his people on the day he surrendered the land to Great Britain, and his hopes that once his actions on behalf of his Kingdom were justified, it would be restored to him as before). At this time, we are an independent modern nation, and we are seen as such, and though we have only recently emerged from darkness into enlightenment, our status has grown, and continues to expand through righteousness.

Each of the many peoples of the earth has things of which they may be proud. England has promoted its powerful navy and through its colonies all around the world (and it is said to be true) the sun never sets on its bounds. France glorifies its Bonaparte, and the way all of Europe trembled while that soldier of a hundred wars sat on the French throne. Rome prided itself on its strength and its wealth. The United States of America was boastful that when it moved toward liberty, it gained its independence, and in recent years, stamped out both rebellion and slavery, never to rise again. Of what do we boast? I say sincerely, indeed there is something, for in the few, short years since the light of God’s word reached our shores, the tree of knowledge and wisdom has been planted, the roots have expanded out, the branches have spread wide, and now its fruits are being sent out among the benighted peoples of this great Pacific Ocean. The brightness of our enlightenment grows every day, and I am proud to say that we are assuming a position among the learned and civilized peoples of the world. I call this the true beauty of this land, Hawai’i.

As a closure to my reflections, I say that we should give our love to Him, the Judge of all things, because of his love for us, in our hours of strife and in times of good fortune and joy.

“May God Save The King With His Eternal Love.”