San Francisco city attorney issues 14 more subpoenas in corruption case

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SAN FRANCISCO (KRON) – City Attorney Dennis Herrera announced on Thursday that 14 more subpoenas had been issued in the joint public corruption investigation that has led to federal charges against former Public Works Director Mohammed Nuru and San Francisco restaurateur Nick Bovis.

The 14 subpoenas issued Thursday focus on a mixed-use project at 555 Fulton St., its permit expediter and contractor Walter Wong, Zhang Li, the developer of the site, and their associated businesses.

“Make no mistake, we’re following the evidence wherever it leads,” Herrera said. “We’re not going to stop until we get to the bottom of this. San Francisco has always been a leader, and we’re going to make sure that we lead when it comes to clean government.”

The subpoenas seek a range of records, including documents that could show services or value being provided to city employees or their families, and communications and records regarding the progress of construction at 555 Fulton St. Services and value could include money, material goods, travel, meals and accommodations.

The City Attorney and Controller’s investigation identified a portable bathroom scheme that related to a $171,000 contract that the City awarded to a Bovis-related entity named SMTM Technology LLC. On Feb. 7, 2020, the City terminated that contract for non-performance by the required deadline. The City did not pay any money under the contract. Additionally, the City did not renew a contract with Alternate Choice, LLC to provide street trash cans. The contract expired at the end of January 2020. Alternate Choice was subpoenaed today.

The additional companies subpoenaed today include Z&L Properties, Inc., FPC Builders, Inc., Jaidin Consulting Group, LLC, W. and Wong Construction Co., Inc which uses the same address as Alternate Choice. Investment firms Synergy California Green Hospitality Regional Center, LLC and SCGHRC Holdings III, LLC and engineering firm BKF Engineers were also subpoenaed.

Herrera initial issued 10 subpoenas on Feb. 12 to PG&E, construction firms Webcor, Pankow and Clark Construction, waste management company Recology, as well as the Lefty O’Doul’s Foundation for Kids, the San Francisco Parks Alliance and San Francisco Clean City Coalition nonprofits.

Federal officials have accused Nuru and Bovis of designing corruption schemes, including allegedly trying to steer city contracts to Bovis. Nuru is also accused of lying to the FBI, having city contractors preform free of discounted work on his vacation home and accepting luxury travel gifts from a developer.

San Francisco Mayor London Breed also admitted to having a personal relationship to Nuru earlier in the month, although she has not been indited in the conspiracy in anyway at this time.

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