Condo owner sues over access

KILAUEA — A Kilauea condo owner is claiming fraud and substantial interference with property rights over what he calls an illegally revised property regime.

Paul Nguyen and Kim Ta, a retired Kilauea couple that purchased a two-lot condo of Moloaa Hui 1 on Koolau Road in June, are suing defendants Dylan and Sheala Strong, along with neighbor Bradley Smith, original owner-developer Michael and Candace Strong, and their company Moloaa Hui Lands, Inc., for trespass, conversion, nuisance and unjust enrichment.

The suit is asking the court to negate a revised Condominium Property Regime that allows additional units access of the Nguyen’s limited-use road. It is also asking for an order to remove an illegal underground power line through the Nguyen’s property.

The Strong’s subdivided their own land and revised the CPR to allow access to two new units 88 and 89. The Nguyens, who own the adjacent unit on lots 48 and 50, said the daily vehicle and farm equipment traffic to and from 89A sends dust onto their property and home just 40 feet away and are asking the court to void the restated CPR declaration.

The suit alleges that the updated regime did not go through the appropriate process and receive 75 percent owner approval which amounts to fraud. The damage amounts to loss of privacy and property value. 

Michael and Candace Strong formed Moloaaa Hui Lands, Inc. in 1996 as parcel owner of Moloaa Hui I and II condo developments, including unit 33. The company did not include the Nguyen road as a common element in the 2005 CPR.

The company dissolved in 2008, but on June 4, attorney Eric Strong formed Moloa‘a Hui Lands, Inc., and signed a long-term lease in July with Global Signal Acquisitions to build a cellphone tower. It is not legal as a different company to renew leases using the old company name without ownership of land or title, Nguyen said.

Smith resides in unit 87, while Dylan and Sheala Strong own unit 89A, which are adjacent to Nguyen’s unit. Strong leased out the adjacent unit 88, which the complaint alleges has no dwelling right on agriculture land with a power meter from the line across Nguyen’s property that is used to serve unit 89.

The developer has taken action without the consent of the condo owners and no improvements have been made to common elements when owners are paying association dues to the responsible management.

Dylan Strong filed a petition to block Nguyen’s temporary restraining order and for an injunction against harassment that was heard on Dec. 22 in 5th Circuit Court. No agreement was reached through mediation, and Judge Trudy Senda granted a trial date of Jan. 23.

In a separate matter the neighboring Kauai Makai filed a $500,000 suit against Nguyen and Ta on Dec. 4, claiming that the couple hired tree cutter took down more than 40 mature ironwood and plum trees on their side of a fence that divides the properties.

Both cases are assigned to Judge Kathleen Watanabe. No hearings have been scheduled.

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