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Hawaii County Police announced on Friday that Mauna Kea fiber optic cable, which links Mauna Kea observatories to the University of Hawaii, has been damaged. They said that they have filed a case and started investigation.
In a statement on October 16, the Hawaii County Police said that the damage was reported by a Mauna Kea Observatories Support Services employee on Thursday. The damage was found during an investigation into the cause of a malfunction in June of a fiber optical line, as per the police.
On June 24, hundreds of people protested against the construction of a Thirty Meter Telescope on the summit of Mauna Kea. That time, about 12 individuals were arrested by the police. During press conference, the police did not link the case of damaged fiber optic cable with the incident in June. As per Mauna Kea Observatories Support Services, the police said that June 24 was the day when the malfunction was first observed.
“Technicians reportedly determined that a fiber optics cable in a conduit located about halfway between Hale Pohaku and the summit had been tampered with and then pushed back into the conduit to avoid detection”, as per the statement by the police. They also said that the damages were of $50,000.
Police said if anyone has any information regarding the case, the person should tell police by calling the Police Department’s non-emergency line.