Man charged in sex case extradited from Thailand back to isle

A man charged with sexually molesting a minor for more than a year was extradited from Thailand back to Maui, law enforcement officials said Thursday.

Steven Strike, 46, is being held without bail in a Maui jail after being tracked down by the U.S. Marshals Hawaii Fugitive Task Force.

On Feb. 7, 2012, Maui police received a complaint alleging that Strike, who was living in Paia at the time, sexually molested a minor for more than a year, the task force said. After being questioned by police and arrested for continuous sexual assault of a minor under 14, he was booked, processed and released pending further investigation.

On Feb. 1, Strike was indicted by the Maui County Grand Jury for alleged sexual assault, but Maui police were unable to locate him, the task force said in a news release. Police learned that a few days after his initial arrest, he left the state.

The Maui Prosecutor’s Office requested the assistance of the Hawaii Fugitive Task Force. Its investigation led them from Paia to Tempe, Ariz., to Bangkok.

The task force reached out to the Department of State regional security officer in Bangkok, and on Dec. 1, the regional security officer and a Thailand Immigration Authority official located and arrested Strike at a residence in Pattaya, Thailand.

Strike had been living in Pattaya for the past 21 months.

On Thursday, Strike was extradited back to Maui, where he is awaiting his initial court appearance, the task force said.

The task force includes the Hawaii-High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area; state Sheriff’s Department; Maui Police Department; Hawaii Police Department; Kauai Police Department; Honolulu Police Department; City and County of Honolulu Prosecutor’s Office; state Department of the Attorney General; Drug Enforcement Administration; and federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms; Immigration and Custom Enforcement; and Social Security Administration.