Kuleana lots on Zuckerberg estate draw crowd

KILAUEA — A public viewing was held Sunday for several small land parcels, whose contested ownership has been the subject of international news, sparked a years-long legal battle involving hundreds of parties and prompted a public apology from the world’s fifth-richest man.

People from all over the state — attorneys, politicians, activists, journalists and curious residents — arrived at an entrance to Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s 700-acre estate on the North Shore for an opportunity to look at the four kuleana lots scattered across the property to be sold at public auction later this month.

A partition sale of the four land parcels will be held noon March 22 on the steps of Kauai’s Fifth Circuit courthouse — one of the final steps toward the resolution of a lawsuit to settle the ownership dispute filed by Carlos Andrade, a former University Hawaii professor who owns about a 25-percent stake in the kuleana lots.

Andrade’s interest in the kuleana dates back to an ancestor, Manuel Rapozo, who acquired the land in the late-19th century. Today, hundreds of his descendants — and innumerable native-Hawaiian rights activists — claim a stake in the land and say Andrade has no right to own or auction off the parcels.

Sunday marked the next step toward finalizing the matter in court — a public viewing is legally required prior to the partition sale — although there is no indication the dispute will be settled at the auction, regardless of the outcome. Many of Rapozo’s descendants feel Andrande’s legal fees are being paid by Zuckerberg and suspect his bid at the upcoming auction will ultimately come from a Zuckerberg-controlled account.

“Does anyone believe that Carlos is bidding on his own?” Wayne Rapozo asked in an email last week.

Rapozo is a London-based corporate lawyer and descendant of Manuel Rapozo who is helping to coordinate and finance the legal battle against Andrade’s quiet title suit. He continued, “I am stunned Hawaii’s public policy makers and even the court are not bothered by this. But the court will not allow us to present evidence.”

Craig DeCosta, a cousin of Wayne Rapozo who is also working to fight the quiet title suit, said at the viewing Sunday his contingent of family members hopes to put together funds to finance a bid for the lots. They hope to keep the land as collective family property and fear Andrade will sell the land to Zuckerberg if he wins at auction.

Beyond the international, intra-familial dispute, lies a group of people whose stake in the land comes from another realm entirely.

“We belong to that land, not the other way around,” Ka’iulani Mahuka said Monday. “They’re selling our sand. And they don’t own it.

In Mahuka’s view, Manuel Rapozo’s acquisition of the land was not legal in the first place because he purchased the lots at auction in 1894, the year after Hawaii’s monarchy was overthrown by a group of businessmen and sugar planters, a coup that led to Hawaii’s annexation by the United States.

“All land transactions after 1893 are illegal,” Mahuka said.

She calls the public auction of her ancestral lands “a war crime” and the partition and sale of Hawaiian land “the biggest heist in history.” She is exasperated by the fact that her government representatives and legislators allow the practice to continue.

“Where is the Office of Hawaiian Affairs when our kuleana lands are being auctioned off?” she asked. “While they squander our trust money, our people are living in their cars.”

This story has been edited to show the correct date of the public auction. A previous version listed the date as March 2 instead of March 22.

  1. False Flag March 6, 2019 7:47 am Reply

    Hold on….those Zucko-kuleana parcels aren’t even owned by HAWAIIANS? Why is Ka’iulani claiming stake in land that was legally sold to the Rapozos 150 years ago? I’m confused. Does that mean that every non-Hawaiian property owner in Hawaii has to forfeit their land, or is it just Zuckerberg because he’s rich and his website sucks? Who gets the land if the Andrades lose it? The ones who complain the loudest? OHA? The guy who sells the chicken in Anahola? Somebody please explain…

  2. Debra Kekaualua March 6, 2019 7:57 am Reply

    Zuckerberg and Andrade are moving forward with CRIMINAL activity that is rampant in THIS FAKE STATE, kanaka being dismissed ALL DAY EVERY DAY via the fifth wealthiest man on the planet to OWN what CAN NOT BE “OWNED”! AMERICA IS PHQING US AGAIN as is the U.S. MILITARY that NEVER shoulda been here in the first place. mAhalo to all the Maoli who actively attended this continuing EVIL that has comprised these islands to the IS WHAT IT IS and the u.s.a. for continuing to keep the ONE LIE told by u.s.a. at the UNITED NATIONS, that annexation documents is in place and WE kanaka voted! BULL SHIT! Judge Soong told the fake state P.A. “It is the burden of the state to show us the annexation document”, then soong himself from his fifth circuit court bench committed a FELONY and has since bailed, AND THE GAME is still on! NO one is able to show ANY document that is ANNEXATION TREATY, NO ONE!

    THE united states of america is lawless, corrupted worse than Kealoha or COK as well as all fake counties, but hey, now weve got another chief of police NOT from here, has NO IDEA of the depth of the u.s.a. RAMRODS only up kanaka maoli arses, so u.s.a. can claim ONERSHIP of Hawaiian Kingdom aina!

    u.s.a. has been warring with these islands and our people DECADES, and i pray they all will be tried and sentenced for all the WAR CRIMES committed by this obviously demented REGIME!

    MAHALO for all maoli who presented at Zuckerbergs adamant gig to Own not only 700 acres, but dismissing kanaka maoli from their aina, that CANNOT be “owned”.

    THE FAT LADY is irie and we now have proof positive that the world will be apprised of what the MAGA is all about! MAGA did this to countless other nations over a century! READ Kinzer book ‘OVERTHROW” it tells names and activities that the cover story says A century of REGIME Changes from Hawaii through IRAQ! WE didnt make up these story lines, america did during the spanish american REGIME change and for FUN america took over these Hawaiian Kingdom aina and placed tons of americas military warring peoples and machinery. NOTED on TV, PMRF! WHILE tourista and residents play at the beach, PMRF has their OWN water well only for them AND is the baddest military base on an island 33×30 miles. Had the Ooops missile compromised hawaii in any way, WWIII wouldve been blamed on North Korea, but america couldnt get away with this ploy, so our governor igenoring our truth and integrity TOOK the fall cuz he couldnt find his password!

  3. MisterM March 6, 2019 8:41 am Reply

    These Rapozo descendants are nothing but leeches. They had no idea they had any interest in the land, but as soon as a billionaire wants their tiny piece, all of a sudden they have faux righteousness indignation. Money-grubbing hypocrites.

  4. No get nuts March 6, 2019 9:17 am Reply

    Pay attention kids your about to watch history repeat itself. Thanks for the sh@ storm Mark.

    1. Hawaiian Realtor March 6, 2019 10:52 am Reply

      Quiet title suits like happen all day every day. Hawaiians and non-Hawaiians use the process to determine ownership of kuleana parcels to sell. Not a s**t storm….a mundane real estate transaction. In a way, you are correct. History is repeating itself, because this process happens all of the time to less famous people and nobody ever raises a stink because it’s perfectly legal and extremely fair.

  5. wildman March 6, 2019 12:15 pm Reply

    HEADS UP ! First and foremost, Rapozo is automatically illegal, his land was purchased after 1894, in records shows the transaction of the members of the illegal safety committee as well recorded. And now in 2019, Zukerberg publc announcement of auction is slated for Mar 22, 2019. Suddenly appears today Mar 3, 2019 without a public Notice…according to source of the Courts..Mr. Zukerberg is in violation of the Federal U.S.C law. And, his accomplices Senators and Legislators who may be liable for his actions…

    According to federal law, 18 USC Ch. 47: FRAUD AND FALSE STATEMENTS. Chapters 47, 1038.False information and hoaxes.
    1039.Fraud and related activity in connection with obtaining confidential phone records information of a covered entity.

    You are hereby informed. By public announcement.
    You do not file for an auction on Mar 22, 2019. And then,
    produce it on Mar 6, 2019 without a public notice…

    Wildman. Feb 6 ,2019.

  6. harry oyama March 6, 2019 5:31 pm Reply

    One thing is sure about OHA, useless agency squandering off $millions while many Hawaiians are homeless. They could step in this case and set a precendence lawsuit against ALL land grabs, but choice not to do so.

    Who knows if OHA is not being pressured not to act?

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