Posts Tagged ‘Kamala D. Harris’

Oh, It’s On! City Attorney Dennis Herrera Calls for Federal, State Investigations into Mayor Ed Lee Campaign

Friday, October 7th, 2011

Get up to speed on this issue right here, courtesy of The Bay Citizen writer Gerry Shih, who’s been nosing around our somewhat-corrupt SFO airport lately.

And here’s the version of the same story what’s in the National Section of today’s New York Times:

Contributions to Mayor Raise Issue of Legality


Your City Attorney Dennis Jose Herrera:

Via Luke Thomas of Fog City Journal

And here they are – Interim Mayor Ed Lee and Mayoral Spokesmodel Tony Winnicker along with the Fourth Estate (including feisty Gerry Shih and feisty Luke Thomas) at San Francisco City Hall:

And here’s “City Family” member GO Lorrie’s Airport Shuttle:

All the deets:

“Herrera calls for criminal investigation of laundered campaign donations to Ed Lee

Letter to U.S. Attorney, State A.G. and San Francisco D.A. says only investigators with authority to subpoena records, question witnesses under oath can resolve questions

SAN FRANCISCO (Oct. 7, 2011) — City Attorney Dennis Herrera today called for a formal criminal investigation into allegations first reported late yesterday afternoon that donors to interim Mayor Ed Lee’s campaign conspired to exceed contribution limits by laundering money through business associates. Herrera’s three-page letter to U.S. Attorney Melinda Haag, California Attorney General Kamala D. Harris, and San Francisco District Attorney George Gascón noted that the published admissions by employees of Go Lorries Airport Shuttle may indicate felony and misdemeanor violations of state and local laws. The California Fair Political Practices Commission has already announced a civil investigation into allegations that donors were reimbursed cash to make campaign contributions to Lee.

Further heightening concerns about the apparently illegal contributions, Herrera wrote, is that the donations closely followed official actions by mayoral appointees that significantly benefited the purported donors’ employer. Those actions include altering shared-ride the loading zone configurations at San Francisco International Airport to favor Go Lorries Airport Shuttles “due to feedback” from unspecified parties. Lee’s campaign has reportedly returned some $8,500 in donations that were questioned yesterday.

“Investigations are warranted when credible allegations risk undermining public trust in our local government — and we’ve certainly reached that point here,” Herrera said. “Only independent investigators with authority to subpoena records and question witnesses under oath can adequately resolve questions to which San Franciscans deserve answers. A formal investigation will best assure justice while protecting innocent parties. I hope interim Mayor Lee’s campaign joins in calling for such an inquiry, and cooperates with it fully.”

Herrera’s letter noted that multiple political endeavors on interim Mayor Lee’s behalf for much of the year have been plagued by ethical and legal questions, including political activities by city contractors, and the advent of a controversial “general purpose committee” that advanced Lee’s candidacy throughout the summer while sidestepping legal restraints that normally apply to candidate committees.

Urging “a full, fair and speedy investigation,” Herrera’s letter to federal and state criminal prosecutors concluded: “Allowing these questions to remain wholly unanswered can only serve to betray San Franciscans’ confidence in the integrity of their public institutions, and potentially diminish the legitimacy of their elected leadership.”

SFPD Arrests Hannah Yau and Maria Dionisio for Epic $2.6 Million Dollar Embezzlement Scams

Wednesday, July 28th, 2010

This one, involving former employees of U.K and San Francisco-based Autonomy Corporation, speaks for itself.

Let’s hear from the SFPD:

“The San Francisco Police Department in conjunction with the San Francisco District Attorney’s Office announced today the arrest and charging of Maria Lourdes B. Dionisio and Hannah Yau for their alleged involvement in a $2.6 million dollar embezzlement scam.”

And now let’s hear from the office of District Attorney Kamala D. Harris, below.

Popo shut us down. Wow:
SAN FRANCISCO – District Attorney Kamala D. Harris announced today the arrest and charging of Maria Lourdes B. Dionisio and Hannah Yau for their alleged involvement in a $2.6 million dollar embezzlement scam.

“The conduct alleged in this case is a classic example of the fox guarding the hen house,” said District Attorney Kamala D. Harris. “To pull off a fraud of this magnitude over a number of years is about more than just being a rogue employee. There is a level of planning and sophistication involved here that makes this crime especially egregious.”

Maria Lourdes B. Dionisio, age 46, of Pacifica, is charged with violating Penal Code sections 487(a), grand theft, 508, embezzlement, and 502(c)(1)(A) and 502(c)(1)(B), computer use crimes, all felonies. Hannah Yau, age 56, of Fremont, is charged with violating Penal Code sections 487(a), grand theft, and 508, embezzlement.

According to court documents, defendant Dionisio, a payroll clerk, and defendant Yau, a financial analyst, were formerly employed by Autonomy, Inc., a San Francisco software programming firm based in England. The two defendants allegedly caused or permitted many checks to be wrongfully issued to themselves over a four year period, resulting in a loss of approximately $2,600,000.

The alleged conduct came to the attention of corporate officers when defendant Dionisio was fired in May 2010, for reasons unrelated to theft.   When she filed for unemployment insurance, defendant Dionisio listed an annual salary of $449,740,far in excess of her base salary of $63,000. An investigation revealed that bonus checks far in excess of those authorized had been paid to defendant Dionisio, who caused the checks to be drafted, and to defendant Yau, who also received checks herself, but did not alert her employer of the theft.

“This case involves an employee who allegedly embezzled from her company and then brazenly claimed her ill-gotten gains as legal compensation in order to inflate her unemployment benefits,” said District Attorney Harris. “The company impacted by the alleged conduct did the right thing in coming forward to report this case to authorities.”

The defendants were arrested on July 28, 2010 in San Francisco. Bail was set in the arrest warrant at $1,000,000 for each defendant.   The defendants are scheduled to be arraigned in San Francisco Superior Court on Thursday, July 29, 2010 at 9:00 am.”