Former Maui Corrections Officer Arrested on Warrant for Alleged Sex Assault

November 7, 2016, 1:17 PM HST · Updated November 7, 1:43 PM
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    A former Maui Community Correctional Center state corrections officer was arrested by US Marshals on Saturday, Nov. 5, 2016 on an arrest warrant for alleged sex assault against a female inmate who was in custody at the time.

    James Siugpiyemal, 43, of Maui was wanted by Maui Police and Maui Prosecutor’s pursuant to an arrest warrant for five counts of alleged sexual assault.

    US Marshals tracked Siugpiyemal to Yap, located within the Federated States of Micronesia, and say he fled to the island of Yap after leaving Maui while on the run from authorities.  Although Siugpiyemal lived and worked in Maui for several years, he remained a FSM citizen and was not a United States citizen, according to department reports.

    On or about July 31, 2014 to Aug. 11, 2014, Siugpiyemal while employed as a state corrections officer on Maui is accused of allegedly forcing a female inmate who was under his control to engage in sexual intercourse and sexual contact in violation of sections contained within the Hawaiʻi Revised Statutes.

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    On Oct. 24, 2014, a Maui County grand jury returned an indictment charging Siugpiyemal and an arrest warrant was issued for Siugpiyemal charging him with three counts of sexual assault in the second degree and two counts of sexual assault in the third degree.

    Bail for the warrant was set at $500,000; however, by the time the arrest warrant was issued, US Justice officials say Siugpiyemal had already fled the State of Hawaiʻi and was declared a fugitive on the run.

    Maui Police and the US Marshals began a joint investigation to track down and arrest Siugpiyemal. US Marshals determined Siugpiyemal had fled Maui for Guam on Oct. 9, 2014; then traveled from Guam to Yap, Micronesia on Oct. 11, 2014 where he allegedly went into hiding. Investigators also say they discovered that after fleeing Maui, Siugpiyemal made phone calls to family and friends in Maui to tell them goodbye and that he had no intentions of returning to Maui or the United States.

    For approximately two years from Nov. 2014 to Sept. 2016, US Marshals, Maui Police, Maui Prosecutor’s Office, and the US Department of Justice Office of International Affairs worked with the FSM Government to have Siugpiyemal arrested and extradited back to the United States to face the charges against him in Maui.

    Then on Sept. 20, 2016, Yap authorities detained Siugpiyemal based on the United States request and brought him before a Yap court to face extradition hearings. Siugpiyemal voluntarily waived his right to contest extradition back to the United States and was held in confinement until US Marshals could travel to Yap and secure his return to the US.

    On Nov. 5, 2016, U.S. Marshals arrested Siugpiyemal on the island of Yap and extradited him back to the United States. Siugpiyemal arrived in Hawaiʻi over the weekend and was turned over to Maui Police for processing and further prosecution.

    According to The Kaselehlie Press, a newspaper in FSM, Siugpiyemal is the first FSM citizen to
    be extradited to the United States since 2005.

    James Siugpiyemal. Courtesy image.

    James Siugpiyemal. Courtesy image.

    James Siugpiyemal. Courtesy image.

    James Siugpiyemal. Courtesy image.

    James Siugpiyemal. Courtesy image.

    James Siugpiyemal. Courtesy image.

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