California State Senator Leland Yee accused of wire fraud

Mar 26, 2014 5:10 PM

Federal Officials are accusing California State Senator Leland Yee of conspiracy to deal firearms and wire fraud.

According to the Associated Press the allegations against Yee were outlined in an FBI affidavit in support of a criminal complaint against Yee and 25 other people. The affidavit was unsealed Wednesday, as Yee was scheduled to appear in court.

Yee, a democrat, was elected to the State Senate in November 2006 and represents District 8, which includes San Francisco and San Mateo County. Yee ran for mayor of San Francisco in 2011 and is currently running for secretary of state.

According to KCRA-TV A second man, Raymond Chow, was also arrested. Chow was reportedly the head of Ghee Kung Tong, one of several fraternal organizations in San Francisco's Chinatown. Chow had returned to Chinatown after serving time in prison on gun charges.

Chow is accused of money laundering, conspiracy to receive and transport stolen property and conspiracy to traffic contraband cigarettes.

California Highway Patrol officers and the Senate sergeant-at-arms remained stationed outside Yee's office until about 12:15 p.m.

The FBI investigation dates back years and the FBI is making a number of arrests connected to the investigation according to NBC Bay Area.

Before his arrest, Sen. Leland Yee was best known publicly for his attempts to strengthen California's open records and government transparency laws.

Yet he also was regarded somewhat warily by his colleagues in the Legislature, where he was known for his sometimes chilly relationship with Democratic leaders when he refused to follow their lead.

Yee’s arrest comes shortly after two other democratic law makers have faced legal trouble. Sen Ron Calderon pleaded not guilty to charges he accepted $100,000 in bribes last month and earlier in the year, Sen. Rod Wright was convicted in a perjury and voter fraud case.

Click here to read more from KCRA-TV or NBC Bay Area.


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