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Pflueger accepts plea deal in deadly Kauai dam breach

Published On: Jul 18 2013 01:52:47 PM HST
Updated On: Jul 18 2013 03:54:22 PM HST

James Pflueger (left)

HONOLULU -

A retired car dealer pleaded no contest to reckless endangering Thursday in a dam breach in Hawaii that swept seven people to their deaths in 2006.
    
State Attorney General spokeswoman Anne Lopez says that in exchange for James Pflueger's plea, state prosecutors agreed to drop seven manslaughter counts.
    
Lopez says the agreement calls for five years probation when he's sentenced Jan. 23. At the sentencing, prosecutors can argue for additional conditions such as community service or a fine.  Pflueger could also face up to a year in jail.
    
Pflueger's company, Pacific 808 Properties, pleaded no contest to seven counts of manslaughter. The company will pay a $350,000 fine that will go toward a dam inspection and safety program.
    
Each manslaughter count would have carried a sentence of 20 years in prison for the 87-year-old landowner.
    
Pflueger's attorneys couldn't be reached for comment.

Attorney General David Louie said, "I am satisfied that by entering into this plea agreement Pflueger has accepted responsibility for his part in this tragedy.  It is my hope that the events of today can provide a degree of closure for the families and community affected by the Ko Loko Dam breach."

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