FBI raids California homes of Oakland mayor and Vietnamese 'trash king' entrepreneur

By AP   June 21, 2024 | 03:29 pm PT
FBI raids California homes of Oakland mayor and Vietnamese 'trash king' entrepreneur
A part of Da Phuoc landfill, managed by David Duong's Vietnam Waste Solutions (VWS), in HCMC's Binh Chanh District in 2018. Photo by VnExpress/Quynh Tran
Federal authorities raided a home belonging to Oakland Mayor Sheng Thao early Thursday as part of a California investigation that included a search of at least two other houses belonging to David Duong, Vietnamese so-called 'trash king'.

FBI agents carried boxes out of 80 Maiden Lane, a four-bedroom home that property records link to the first-term mayor, the San Francisco Chronicle reported. Thao’s spokesperson Francis Zamora referred inquiries to the FBI.

"The FBI conducted court-authorized law enforcement activity on Maiden Lane in Oakland this morning. We are unable to provide additional information at this time," a bureau statement said.

Agents also carried out searches about three miles to the south at two homes owned by members of the politically influential Duong family that owns the recycling company Cal Waste Solutions, the Chronicle said. The firm has been investigated over campaign contributions to Thao and other elected city officials, the local news outlet Oaklandside reported in 2020.

One of the properties is owned by Andy Duong and the other is connected to David and Linda Duong, according to records cited by the Chronicle. David Duong is the leader of recycling company California Waste Solutions, as well as Vietnam Waste Solutions. Andy Duong is his son.

Phone messages and emails seeking comment on the raid from Cal Waste Solutions officials were not immediately returned. Personal phone numbers for members of the Duong family could not be found.

Thao, 38, is facing a recall election less than two years into her term as mayor. The city clerk’s office last week notified leaders behind the recall effort that they had gathered enough verified signatures to qualify for the ballot in November.

Increased crime and budgetary problems have challenged Thao since she assumed office in January 2023 after a stint on the Oakland City Council.

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