State Sen. Leland Yee, others indicted in corruption case 

click to enlarge Leland Yee | Ron Calderon
  • In this photo made Tuesday, Jan. 28, 2014, state Sen. Leland Yee, D-San Francisco, left, speaks on a bill, while his seat mate Sen. Ron Calderon, D-Montebello, works at his desk at the Capitol in Sacramento, Calif. Yee and several others were indicted on corruption charges Friday.

A California state senator and more than two dozen others have been formally indicted in a sweeping San Francisco political corruption case, officials announced Friday.

The U.S. Attorney's office in San Francisco released a grand jury indictment Friday that replaces the criminal complaint prosecutors filed last week. State Sen. Leland Yee and 19 others were arrested in the San Francisco Bay Area on March 26.

The indictment contains the same charges as the complaint, but it does add two more people to the case who weren't named last week.

In total, 29 people have been charged in connection with an organized crime investigation centered on a Chinese social organization the FBI says is a front for an Asian gang. The status of some of those charged is unclear.

Yee, a San Francisco Democrat, is charged with conspiring to connect an undercover FBI agent with an arms dealer in exchange for campaign contributions. He is also charged with trading political influence for cash.

The senator's new lawyer, former federal prosecutor Jim Lassart, didn't immediately return a phone call Friday.

Yee is free on $500,000 bond pending trial. He and most of the other defendants, including Raymond "Shrimp Boy" Chow, are scheduled to be arraigned Tuesday.

Chow remains in jail after a magistrate judge declared the Hong Kong native and convicted felon a flight risk and a danger to the community.

Chow is the leader of a Chinese community group that the FBI says is a front for a notorious Asian gang. His charges include money laundering, trafficking in stolen goods and illegal cigarettes.

The two new people charged in the case are Zanghao Wu and Tong Zao Zhang.

They are charged with buying contraband cigarettes from an undercover FBI agent in New York. The Marlboro brand cigarettes were missing stamps that show New York state taxes had been paid.

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