Capitol Alert

Former California Sen. Leland Yee set to change not-guilty plea

Former state Sen. Leland Yee, D-San Francisco, leaves the San Francisco Federal Building on March 26, 2014.
Former state Sen. Leland Yee, D-San Francisco, leaves the San Francisco Federal Building on March 26, 2014. Associated Press file

Is a plea deal in the works for former state Sen. Leland Yee?

The San Francisco Democrat, who pleaded not guilty last year on charges related to public corruption, illegal arms dealing and racketeering, is scheduled for a “change of plea” hearing in federal court Wednesday morning.

Yee’s attorney could not immediately be reached for comment. Abraham Simmons, spokesman for the U.S. attorney’s office in San Francisco, said he could not discuss what might happen at the hearing.

Yee was arrested in March 2014 on suspicion of trading favors to help retire campaign debts from a failed mayoral run. He faces up to 165 years in prison and $2.25 million in penalties for charges including accepting money to influence medical marijuana legislation and offering to facilitate an international arms deal. A trial is set to begin Aug. 10.

Three of Yee’s co-defendants are also on the calendar to change their pleas, including Keith Jackson, a former San Francisco school board member and Yee fundraiser who is charged with wire fraud, gun trafficking, narcotics conspiracy and murder for hire.

Alexei Koseff: 916-321-5236, @akoseff

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