Illegal Fireworks 06/30/99

HAWAII COUNTY POLICE DEPARTMENT
HILO CRIMINAL INVESTIGATION SECTION
LIEUTENANT DEREK PACHECO
PHONE: 961-2252
JUNE 30, 1999

MEDIA RELEASE

Police are warning Big Island residents that it is illegal to purchase fireworks by catalog without an import permit.

Catalogs from Olde Glory Marketing are being mailed, either by request or randomly, to Hawaii residents and circulated. And individuals have been using the catalogs to phone in orders to buy fireworks, including illegal aerial fireworks.

Police officers are currently investigating two separate cases in East Hawaii in which four cartons of fireworks were shipped to Hawaii. Three more cartons were recovered in Kona.

The cases have been routed to the prosecutor’s office for Grand Jury action.

The back of the catalog includes a disclaimer saying the purchaser is required to obtain all necessary permits, but residents who ordered the fireworks told investigators that the shipper either had told them that a permit is not required or had failed to mention the requirement.

State law (Section 132(D)-7, Hawaii Revised Statutes) requires residents to obtain permits from the Hawaii County Fire Department before importing fireworks into the state. Violators are subject to prosecution for a Class C felony.

Local shipping companies must also notify the Fire Department of any fireworks being received so that the department can check to see if proper permits have been obtained.

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