Neighborhood Board Figure Accused Of Fraud

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BY JIM DOOLEY -Ewa Neighborhood Board member and past state House candidate Kurt Fevella has been sued for fraud by a Mainland woman who claims Fevella took financial advantage of her elderly father while he was in Fevella’s care.

Ewa Beach Residence sold to Kurt Favella (Photo Courtesy of Carroll Cox)

Fevella has not responded to the suit yet and did not reply to requests for comment.


The state court suit was filed by Melanie Burroughs, daughter of Paul W. Burroughs, an Ewa Beach resident who died in 2009, two years after selling his home to Favella and his wife for $250,000.

Before he passed away, Burroughs told his daughter that he planned to leave “the majority of his estate” to her, the suit, filed by attorney John Edmunds, alleged.

While acting as Burroughs’ caregivers, Kurt and DonnaLee Favella “assisted him from time to time in his personal and financial affairs” and “used undue influence and fraud” to induce him to deed the title to his house to them, the suit charged.

Property records show that in 2007, Burroughs took out two mortgages on his home before selling it later that year to the Favellas.

The first mortgage, for $100,000, was made in January 2007 and the second, an adjustable rate “reverse mortgage” worth up to $660,000, was borrowed in June 2007, according to state land records.

Reverse mortgages allow individuals over 62 years of age to draw cash from the equity in their homes over time.  The effect on the market value of a home varies according to terms of the loan.

Favella did not respond to questions about how the loan proceeds were used or if he assisted Burroughs in borrowing the money.

Both loans have since been repaid.

Favella, who works part-time for the City as a refuse inspector, ran  unsuccessfully for the state House of Representatives in 2008 and last year.

A vocal proponent of the Honolulu rapid transit project, Fevella is past chairman of the Ewa Neighborhood Board and was re-elected to the board earlier this year.




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Jim Dooley joined the Hawaii Reporter staff as an investigative reporter in October 2010. Before that, he has worked as a print and television reporter in Hawaii since 1973, beginning as a wire service reporter with United Press International. He joined Honolulu Advertiser in 1974, working as general assignment and City Hall reporter until 1978. In 1978, he moved to full-time investigative reporting in for The Advertiser; he joined KITV news in 1996 as investigative reporter. Jim returned to Advertiser 2001, working as investigative reporter and court reporter until 2010. Reach him at


  1. The deceased was robbed and his house and assets taken from him.

    His expensive art collect worth a million was taken by Senator Willie Espero and is in his house.

    • If you read this, please contact my attorney Mr. John Edmunds regarding what you know of my dad’s art collection. He needs an accounting of everything and if this senator didn’t buy this collection from my father, then he has something that doesn’t belong to him…

  2. This happens way too often! Worked on a couple of cases involving these types of crimes. But they gotta watch out for these types of folks, as well as the ATTORNEYS that they hire to help them with their cases…

    Pray for this family, but also for the deceased. Many prayers out to the family members left to clean up this huge mess.

    • It does happen way too often but not in this case. The folks we need to watch out for are the ones who try to claim what isn’t theirs to claim. The plaintiff wasn’t here for years to care for her dad and is now suing because she isn’t inheriting what she thought she was going to get.

      I will pray for both families and for Mr. Burroughs too. In my opinion, the family members who are left to clean up this mess are those of Kurt and his wife. They were the ones that were here during Mr. Burroughs last years, and even when he passed away they were the ones who made arrangements for his funeral. And they will be the ones that are still living here in Ewa Beach amongst the many people who will have a negative recognition of Kurt because of this senseless case.

      Definitely prayers for everyone involved.

  3. SAD!!!! I sat in a few Ewa Neighborhood board meetings in the past when Kurt was Chair. He always said a prayer before the meeting started. A few times I over heard him talking about the Lord (which is a good thing), but to think that he could do such a evil and cruel thing like this makes me sick! All I can say is… what goes around comes around. In biblical terms… you reap what you sow dude!! Kurt Favella and his family should be ashamed of themselves. Others involved should receive the same punishment. Who’s to say that if Kurt gets busted, he may just bring everyone involved down with him. I’M JUST SAYIN’!! Something to think about guys.

    • The situation is a sad one, but your response to this article about how Kurt is being ACCUSED of doing those things make it worse. He is being ACCUSED…that doesn’t mean that he did do this. I know him personally for many years and have even witnessed how he treated Mr. Burroughs and know without a doubt that Kurt did not take advantage of that man. Besides that Kurt and his family are being put through this torment for nothing, what is really sad here is how this all came about now, 2 years after the man has passed away. I think about how sad it was for this man to receive care from friends instead of his own family. I’ve been to the house while Mr. Burroughs was still alive and also while Kurt and his wife planned and made all the arrangements for his funeral back on 7-15-09, and I saw no abuse or mistreatment of Mr. Burroughs by Kurt or his family, in the many years that Kurt took care of Mr. Burroughs.

      It’s not your fault that you don’t Kurt personally otherwise you would know he is a caring person who would not ever do anything like that. But it is your fault that you would allow a news article that reports cases of accusations (not news of what actually happened) to change how you view a person you don’t even know and lets you say things like “Kurt Fevella and his family should be ashamed of themselves”. If anyone should be ashamed of themselves, it should be the plaintiff who didn’t come to take care of her aging father and instead is suing an innocent man and his wife 2 years after her father passed away, because she isn’t getting the inheritance she expected or wanted.

      Yes I also believe you reap what you sow so I hope that it falls back onto whoever’s evil and cruel intentions are behind this case. In response to all those that have tried to bring Kurt down in the past, he continues to trust in God and rise from the false accusations. The same will happen here but how unfortunate it is how inconsiderate people can be, not realizing that this all has a negative effect on his public image and character and financially affects him adversely. I’ll continue to pray for all of those involved in this case, especially the ones with the evil motives.

      • Whoever you are Xela, you have a lot of nerve judging me and my motives. I know what my father’s intentions were regarding myself and my brother and the only reason it took this long to file the case is that a lot of background work had to be done before it could be filed. I appreciate that Mr. Fevella was there to take care of my dad since I couldn’t. But, you and others like you, should not be judging people. I bet Mr. Fevella didn’t tell you that he waited a week before notifying me of my father’s passing. His claim of not knowing how to contact me is very weak. I spoke with my father on Father’s day, June 14, 2009, just two weeks before he died and had sent more than one letter (at his request by the way) letting him know how I could be contacted. Now, if Mr. Fevella is the man of God that he’s claiming to be, then WHY didn’t he send me the things that I had requested – my dad’s personal things (including family pics), the name of his attorney and insurance company, and a copy of the death certificate. Mr. Fevella told me on the day he called me that he would send those things out as soon as he got them together. I called him several days later and he was very coarse with me on the phone about my calling him regarding those things. If he had just worked with me, this could have all been avoided. Think of the negative affect on me of what Mr. Fevella has done. I and my brother were the only family my dad had left. My father didn’t want me coming over there while I was battling (and still battling) my cancer. Put yourself in my shoes and think of how you would feel if someone said what you said about me. I will pray for you and will continue to pray for Kurt and his family as I have done ever since finding out. Remember, JUDGE NOT LEST YE BE JUDGED.

      • @ Xela: Your opinions and your sweet comments about Kurt is your opinions. The reason why the public is able to comment on any news articles that come about is to voice their own opinions. You say that many people have tried to bring Kurt down in the past. Now the question arises to “WHY?” Why would people want to bring Kurt down so badly? If you say that its jealousy, I highly doubt that.

        As for judging Melanie Burroughs for not being there for her father is ruthless all on it’s own! You get mad at people voicing their opinions about Kurt, but what about your opinions about Ms. Burroughs? You don’t know her history and her situations as well. There are many people out there that don’t care for their parents as they should and that’s unfortunate, but there could be a reason for that. Some people are just too busy to even notice their parents and some people like Melanie Burroughs didn’t have a choice but to move off the island. In addition, she’s battling a terminal illness!

        So now that I have voiced my opinion about your opinion, I just want to add that I DO KNOW KURT FEVELLA!

  4. Before judging Melanie Burroughs, you should know that she was battling cancer for two years and had to go through extensive chemotherapy and could not travel to Hawaii.

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