Maui prosecutor appointed to national DA’s association


The Maui News

Maui County Deputy Prosecutor Richard Minatoya has been appointed to be an associate director of the National District Attorneys Association.

The organization, known as “the voice of America’s prosecutors,” was formed in 1950 to provide a focal point for prosecutors to advance their causes and issues at the national level, according to the organization’s website.

Association representatives regularly meet with the Department of Justice, members of Congress and other national associations to represent the views of prosecutors to influence federal and national policies and programs that affect law enforcement and prosecution, the website says.

Minatoya was voted in as an associate director July 16 at the board of directors meeting in Minneapolis, Minn. He is among nine associate directors, including one who is a head prosecutor.

“It’s good that we can have a voice in a national organization,” said Maui County Prosecuting Attorney John D. Kim. “Having Richard’s voice in a leadership position can only benefit us locally.”

More than 5,000 elected and appointed district attorneys and assistant district attorneys are part of the larges prosecutor organization in the country.

As an associate director, Minatoya said one of his goals is have the organization hold a training or meeting on Maui “so our deputies get exposed to that too.”

In the Maui County prosecutor’s office, Minatoya is head of the appellate and asset forfeiture section, which handles appeals, post-conviction petitions and federal habeas corpus cases. The section also provides in-house training and tracks legislation.

Minatoya has worked as a Maui County deputy prosecutor for more than 13 years and also served for a year and a half as first deputy in the Kauai prosecutor’s office. He has been an attorney for more than 24 years.

He has a bachelor’s degree in economics from the University of Southern California and received his law degree in 1992 from the William S. Richardson School of Law at the University of Hawaii.

He serves as the Maui County member of the Hawaii Advisory Council on Emergency Management and is president of the Kiwanis Club of Kahului.