Gun rights advocates told Guns & Patriots they are shocked by the news that one of California’s most ardent anti-gun politicians was arrested by federal authorities for multiple charges including illegally trafficking firearms.
“It is the height of hypocrisy when one of the leaders of the anti-gun movement is involved in distributing firearms to criminal elements,” said Sam Paredes president of Gun Owners of California a non-profit lobbying organization formed to protect and preserve Second Amendment rights in California.
In a crushing criminal complaint filed in the Northern District of California last week, state Sen. Leland Lin Yin Yee (D-San Francisco) is being accused of conspiracy to commit wire fraud and conspiracy to deal and import firearms without a license, he said.
In addition to Yee, other defendants include: Raymond “Shrimpboy” Chow, the current Dragonhead, or leader, of the San Francisco-based Chee Kung Tong organization and Keith Jackson, a consultant to the CKT and Jackson’s son and associates, the complaint said.
According to the complaint, Yee functioned as an operative of the CKT, as he furthered his own political career and its financing, and along with Jackson, reached out to undercover agents with the FBI.
“In a further attempt by Jackson and Yee to gain money from one of the undercover agents, in August 2013, Jackson told the undercover agent that Yee had a contact who deals in arms trafficking,” the complaint said. “Jackson requested that the undercover agent provide a campaign donation on behalf of Yee, for Yee to facilitate a meeting with the arms dealer with the intent of the undercover agent to purportedly purchase a large number of weapons. During a meeting with the undercover agent, Yee and Jackson allegedly discussed details of the specific types of weapons the undercover agent was interested in buying and importing.”
Paredes said, “If the indictment is true, Yee was providing firearms – of a significant greater firepower – to criminal elements for distribution in the United States and California.”
GOC has had major differences with Yee who was a proponent of approx. 40 gun-control bills last year that would limit the ability for law-abiding citizens to purchase legal firearms, he said. “We have had animated discussions with him in the hallways of the state capital and in committee hearings.”
The U.S. Attorney’s office announced that the complaint charges 26 defendants with firearms trafficking, money laundering, murder-for-hire, drug distribution, trafficking in contraband cigarettes, and honest services fraud. Additionally, Yee, who has been a state senator since 2006, is alleged to have solicited and received donations for various campaigns in exchange for multiple official acts.
“Yee’s arrest is just another glaring example of the hypocrisy of the gun-hating, liberal-left elitist,” said Mark Walters, host of nationally syndicated Armed American Radio. AAR is the official radio program of the United States Concealed Carry Association. “They make laws they don’t feel they have to comply with but at the same time would prosecute us for it.”
It comes as no surprise that a gun-hater turned crook would offer as many anti-gun bills as possible, he said. “It seems to me Yee wanted to corner the market on the illegal importation of firearms for his own profit.”
Clearly outlawing guns while capturing the market is mob-politics, he added. “Just like what happened during prohibition; they wanted alcohol illegal and they profited immensely from it.”
The state of California is controlled at its highest levels in government by the very same elitist gun-hating hypocrites as Yee, said the co-author of “Lessons from UNarmed America.”
On Walter’s March 30 program, Alan Gottlieb, the leader of the Second Amendment Foundation said: “It was guns for Yee, but not for thee!”
The details in the complaint are so nefarious, it could be the making of a movie script, said Paredes. “Your best Hollywood writers could not come-up with a script for a movie like this indictment.”
Yee was the author of the “Bullet Button Ban” bill that attempted to ban legally owned AR-15/AK-47 style firearms that have bullet buttons in California, he said. “He wanted to make the bullet button illegal which would instantly make arguably one million guns in the state illegal.”
A bullet button modifies a rifle so that the magazine is not removable without the use of a tool. Firearms with this feature no longer have a “detachable magazine” as defined and banned under California law. In the recent matter of Haynie v. Pleasanton, the court determined that guns that have the bullet button installed do not qualify as assault weapons and are therefore legal in the state.
Application of pro-Second Amendment legislation is difficult, said Parades who has been involved with GOA for more than 30 years.
“The Democrats have a two-thirds majority in both houses of the legislature so they have a super majority and the power to override any objections the governor might have to gun control legislation,” he said. “Thankfully we have a handful of Democrat members in the legislature who believe in the Second Amendment and vote consistently for gun rights.”
In California, Yee has been the third Democrat senator who has either been indicted or convicted for criminal activity in the past two years, he said.
“The public sees they have a justified mistrust of government. I think there will be a backlash on Democrat members especially if they are pro-gun control.”
The founding fathers provided a system of checks and balances through the legislative process and through elections, said Parades. “We can work-out our strong political differences in the political arena.”
Yee undermined the political process to such a degree – it’s scary, he said.
Last year no one would have guessed that something so corrupt could have happened in the state senate, he said. “We are immensely saddened by the dark cloud that has been brought over the whole legislative process.”
Gun Owners of America are believers in the idea that one is innocent until proven guilty, he said. “But the minute we have an inkling you are involved in illegal activity the entire weight of the law should come down on you.”