First published: Sunday, April 1, 2007
SARATOGA SPRINGS (Albany Times-Union) -- Lawyer Kurt Mausert's quest to bring the alleged killer of his brother to justice continues to face obstacles created by Hawaiian prosecutors not taking any action, he says.
"Nobody in Hawaii is answering any of my correspondence," Mausert said of letters to the U.S. attorney's office and state prosecutors in Hawaii.
Mausert's campaign reaches back to February 1979, when his older brother, Eric Mausert, then 28, was knifed on a Honolulu street while trying to prevent a fight, according to Kurt Mausert.
Eric Mausert, a graduate of Bishop Gibbons High School and a former Schenectady resident, was a Hare Krishna monk working in Honolulu as an indexer of Sanskrit texts for the religious community.
He was driving a newly married couple, also members of the Krishna community, to the airport when they stopped to seek the blessing of the woman's family, according to Kurt Mausert, who was 21 when his brother died, and newspaper accounts. The parents were not happy with the wedding.
Juvenal Llaneza, brother of the new bride, went after the couple, according to accounts of the incident. He allegedly stabbed Eric Mausert in the heart, according to Kurt Mausert. Llaneza was arrested by Honolulu police then freed. Llaneza, who was from a politically connected family, left for the Philippines, Kurt Mausert said.
Kurt Mausert found Llaneza while doing an Internet search several years ago. The information provided renewed energy for his efforts to get Llaneza extradited from the Philippines and brought to trial in Honolulu.
Now, he faces more frustrations. He said he tried to persuade the U.S. attorney to prosecute Llaneza as a fugitive from justice. That didn't get anywhere.
"All they give me is the silent treatment," he said.
"I'm the relative of a homicide victim. They won't come out and say we're not going to do it," he said.
The U.S. attorney's office in Honolulu did not respond to a request for comment.
U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer's staff is assisting Kurt Mausert to get some answers. Schumer's office has written Edward H. Kubo Jr., the U.S. attorney for Hawaii, seeking to get the case pursued, Mausert said.
Mausert also has written the bar associations in every state and the American Bar Association asking them to boycott Hawaii until his brother's case is resolved. So far, none of the bar associations have agreed to do so.
Source: Timesunion.com (Albany Times-Union)
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