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Paul Pelosi Jr., the son of Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, is reportedly at the center of a fraud and bribery scheme involving a squalid San Francisco flop house owned by his ex-girlfriend that’s being investigated by the FBI.
That’s according to the Daily Mail, which is now reporting that “smoking gun documents” have been obtained that tie Pelosi Jr. to efforts to remove permit violations against the property referred to as “The Pit.”
The British newspaper said the speaker’s son “listed himself as the owner” of the flop house, and has unearthed documents reflecting this.
“In the documents, Paul Pelosi Jr. signed statements that he was the property owner, ‘the party legally and financially responsible for this proposed construction activity’ and agreed to ‘abide by all applicable laws and requirements that govern Owner-Builders as well as employers,'” the Daily Mail reported. “And they even show Pelosi Jr., 53, applying for one of the very same permits that building inspector Bernie Curran and ‘permits expeditor’ Rodrigo Santos have been indicted for.”
“The Department of Building Inspection (DBI) form, signed by Pelosi Jr. and dated December 7, 2017, is a ‘smoking gun’ that evidences the House Speaker’s son’s close links to the high-profile public corruption criminal case,” he newspaper added.
The FBI probe becomes the sixth bureau investigation that Pelosi Jr. has been linked to, the latest being focused on an indicted building permit fixer who allegedly bribed a city official.
Rodrigo Santos, former president of the San Francisco Building Inspection Commission, was indicted for fraud in November. Prosecutors contend that Santos arranged for clients to donate thousands of dollars to building inspector Bernie Curran’s favorite non-profit in exchange for permits. Set to appear in court Friday, both men deny any wrongdoing.
Curran told the Daily Mail that Santos introduced him to Pelosi Jr. in the Department of Building Inspection offices, saying Pelosi Jr. was a jogging partner.
As BizPac Review noted, one of Santos’ clients wrote a check for $1,500 to the Golden Gate Youth Rugby Association in an apparent effort to sway Curran to remove violation notices against the dilapidated Mission District Hotel, better known to building inspectors as “The Pit.” The property reportedly has a long history of permit violations.
Associates of Pelosi Jr. who have been subpoenaed and interviewed, including his ex-girlfriend, the building’s former owner, her attorney, and a consultant in the sale of the hotel, assert that FBI agents questioned them about Pelosi Jr.’s involvement in the property. Speaker Pelosi’s son admitted he was “helping remove the citations from the property” in a February 2019 report obtained by the Daily Mail.
The ex-girlfriend, Karena Feng, sues Pelosi Jr. in 2019 for allegedly conspiring with a now-convicted lawyer and fraudulent realtor to steal the property from her, the newspaper reported. While the case was dismissed in 2020 on technical grounds, the accuses, including Pelosi Jr., denied the claims.
More on that from the Daily Mail:
Pelosi Jr. was recorded as the listing agent on a 2015 contract in which Feng sold the property for $4million, though she claimed her signature on it was forged.
He was also listed as chief financial officer of Feng RE Inc, Feng’s company which held the flop house, in 2015.
In an August 2016 email to Feng, Pelosi Jr. claimed that he owned 20 per cent of Feng RE.
But when Mission Local asked him about the property in 2018 he lied, at first denying ever having held any stake in Feng RE.
“It’s not my business,” he told the paper. “I never got paid. I never expected to get paid.”
When confronted with documents showing he had been an officer of the company, he reportedly changed his story to the paper, claiming Feng gifted him 20 per cent equity in the building on his birthday but he refused the offer – contrary to his claims in his August 2016 email to Feng.
Pelosi Jr. was reportedly interviewed by federal agents in San Francisco over the hotel and there is some belief that he could be the mysterious Client 9 mentioned in charging documents. Client 9 being described as “an individual working on behalf of the owners of the property located on the 1300 block of Utah Street.”
“Text messages obtained by the feds allegedly show Santos and Client 9 brazenly discussing a bribe to Curran’s favorite charity to help grease the permit process,” the Daily Mail reported.
The British tabloid said Pelosi Jr., who has not responded to written messages, “hung up” when asked for comment, saying he had another incoming call.
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