Former Ewa Beach man sentenced for stealing fireworks

Local News

A former Ewa Beach man has been sentenced to 88 months for possession of explosives and for possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine.

As part of his sentence, Malcolm Militante, 51, must also pay $2,966.60 in restitution to Hawaii Explosives & Pyrotechnics (HEP), the company from which Militante stole the fireworks. 

U.S. Attorney Kenji M. Price state 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 Waikiki. 

On November 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 November 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 January 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. 

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