Man Sentenced for Stealing Waikiki Fireworks & Intent to Distribute Meth
An O‘ahu man was sentenced for stealing fireworks that are normally used in the Friday Night Hilton Waikīkī fireworks display as well as intention to distribute methamphetamine.
Malcolm Militante, 51, formerly a resident of Ewa Beach, Hawai‘i, was sentenced Thursday, Aug. 16, 2018, to 88 months’ imprisonment for possession of explosives, namely display fireworks, and for possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine. As part of his sentence, Militante must pay $2,966.60 in restitution to Hawai‘i Explosives & Pyrotechnics (HEP), the company from which Militante stole the fireworks.
U.S. Attorney Kenji M. Price stated that, according to court documents and information presented in court, HEP produces commercial fireworks shows, including the Friday night fireworks show at the Hilton Hawaiian Village in Waikīk. On Nov. 25, 2016, HEP reported that the company truck had been stolen, and HEP’s storage bunker, which had contained display and general use fireworks, fireworks supplies, and equipment, had been burglarized.
The next day, the Honolulu Police Department received an anonymous tip that Militante possessed the stolen fireworks at a residence in Ewa beach that he shared with his mother. HPD officers searched the residence, found the stolen fireworks, and seized them. Militante was later indicted for stealing the fireworks from HEP and for being a convicted felon in possession of explosives, namely the fireworks.
On Nov. 9, 2017, Militante was arrested on those charges. At the time of the arrest, HPD recovered a backpack containing about 29 grams of methamphetamine, a digital scale, other drug paraphernalia, and $6,000 in cash. Militante was later indicted in a separate case for possessing the 29 grams of methamphetamine with the intent to distribute it.
On Jan. 16, 2018, Militante pleaded guilty to possession of explosives, namely display fireworks, and possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine. The two cases were joined for purposes of sentencing.
U.S. District Judge Derrick K. Watson, imposed a sentence of 88 months to be followed by a five-year term of supervised release. In imposing sentence, Judge Watson noted that possession of display fireworks is inherently dangerous. He further stated that, while Militante did not attempt to modify or destroy the fireworks, the possession of them in an unsecured place like his residence, which he shared with his mother, put them both at risk.
The case was jointly investigated by the Honolulu Police Department and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives. It was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Marshall H. Silverberg.