Honolulu Councilmember Rod Tam Pleads Guilty to 26 Theft and Unsworn Falsification Charges

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HONOLULU – Honolulu City Councilmember Rodney H.C.G. Tam pled guilty today to two counts of Theft in the Third Degree, eleven counts of Theft in the Fourth Degree, and thirteen counts of Unsworn Falsification to Authorities.

The Department of the Attorney General filed a complaint alleging that Tam, as a Councilmember, submitted false claims for reimbursements of meals during fiscal years 2007-2008 and 2008-2009.  Tam knowingly charged the City higher amounts than the actual receipts paid for the meals, and was therefore overpaid in reimbursements.

The amounts of the individual overcharges described in the complaint ranged from $8.00 to $267.55 and were incurred at various restaurants in Honolulu.

Under a plea agreement with the Department of the Attorney General, Tam pled guilty as charged to all 26 counts.

“Mr. Tam violated a public trust, and has now pled guilty to 26 separate crimes,” Attorney General Mark Bennett said.  “We believe this is an appropriate resolution to this case.”

Sentencing is scheduled for January 27, 2011, before the Honorable Randal Shintani.

Theft in the Third Degree and Unsworn Falsification to Authorities are misdemeanors punishable by up to one year in jail, a fine of up to $2,000, or both.  Theft in the Fourth Degree is a petty misdemeanor punishable by up to thirty days in jail, a fine of up to $1,000, or both.

Submitted by Bridget Holthus, Special Assistant to the Attorney General

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