Patrons of Oakland Mayor Thao, whose house was raided by FBI, donated to prominent Sacramento County politician

Andy Duong (left) and then Oakland City Councilmembere and current Mayor Sheng Thao in 2019.  Both individuals had their domiciles raided by FBI agent. |   

It is never good when a squad of FBI agents makes an early morning visit to your house. That is what greeted embattled Oakland, Calif. Mayor Sheng Thao yesterday morning.

Various reports say the FBI descended on Madame Mayor's Oakland residence and some of her political benefactors, the Duong family, and offices of the family business, Cal Waste Recyclers. The Duong family's Cal Waste is Oakland's contracted curbside waste recycler.

The FBI has not disclosed details of the multiple raids in which agents were seen leaving with boxes of materials. The raid's implications for Mayor Thao, who is facing a November recall election, and the Duong family show they are under scrutiny.

The Duong family is reportedly a benefactor of primarily Democratic candidates. Andy Duong, a member of the Duong family and whose house was one of the four domiciles raided yesterday, has a prolific social media presence that includes pictures of him with President Biden and Vice President Harris.

A review of Mr. Andy Duong's Instagram page also shows him posed with Gavin Newsom, California Attorney General Rob Bonta, Nevada Attorney General Aaron Frd, HHS Secretary Xavier Becerra, Congresswoman Barbara Lee, Congressman Josh Harder, Assemblymember Mia Bonta, former U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder, and many less prominent politicians. 

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Following yesterday's raid, produced a lengthy article on Mayor Thao and the Duongs. It does not paint a flattering picture. Interestingly, is reporting today that the mayor has fallen off the radar since yesterday's raids. 

While the Duongs are politically active nationally and in the Bay Area, their money has also worked into Sacramento County politics. According to his California Form 460 file on July 31, 2023, Sacramento County District Attorney Thien Ho has received $4,900 from Duong Family Investments LLC (Victor Duong) Oakland, CA 94606. 

San Francisco Chronicle reporting ties (see embedded story below) the family trust to David and Andy Duong and suggests they have involvement with so-called straw donors.

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The story says:

"Last July, David Duong was named in a warning letter issued by the FPPC. The watchdog found that a committee he is associated with, Duong Family Investments LLC, failed to disclose itself as a major donor in 2018 and warned that it could face fines of $5,000 per violation in the future.

David Duong has continued to donate heavily to political candidates and causes amid the various probes. He has donated heavily to an assortment of Republican and Democratic campaigns on the federal level. He and his son have also donated to local and state campaigns, including to those of Attorney General Rob Bonta."

During their fundraising efforts, candidates and their campaign staff do not vet the donors' intents or investigate their reputations unless the donor is already notorious. However, when the slightest sniff of corruption appears, particularly for elected law enforcement officials, those donations are usually returned.

DA Ho was contacted through the district attorney's public relations office, asking if he intends to return the donation. As of 1 p.m., there has been no response to the inquiry. 

The next California Form 460 for the first six months of 2024 must be filed by July 31.  

An Elk Grove News reader contributed to this story. 

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