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Oakland Mayor’s Son Tied to Alleged Drug Ring

From Times Wire Services

The FBI and federal prosecutors on Wednesday called Oakland Mayor Lionel Wilson’s son Stephen “an associate” of a cocaine trafficking operation but refused to say whether he will be charged in the case.

“Based on our investigation, Mr. (Stephen) Wilson is an associate,” Barry Mawm, the FBI’s assistant special agent in charge of criminal operations, said at a news conference.

He displayed a chart in which Stephen Wilson, whose Oakland home was searched Monday, was listed along with four others linked to Guillermo Diaz, a Mexican travel-book publisher in Marin County and an alleged cocaine supplier. Diaz is the central figure in a seven-month FBI investigation that also has Mafia ties.

Diaz and the other four have been charged. Wilson has not. On Tuesday, the FBI released an affidavit that said wiretaps and other surveillance “indicate the existence of a continuing conspiracy” between Diaz, Wilson, two others on the chart and unnamed others to distribute cocaine.

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The chart showed a link between Diaz and Sergio Maranghi, alleged to be the leader of a San Francisco drug ring with connections to Mafia figures on the East Coast and in Italy.

Mawm said the FBI believes that Diaz was one of Maranghi’s suppliers.

“We know Diaz and Maranghi had a relationship,” Mawn said, but declined to elaborate.

Maranghi was arrested Dec. 1 in a massive roundup of 76 drug suspects in the United States and 133 people in Italy.

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Agents also displayed part of $246,856 in cash that they said was found in the search of Wilson’s home, most of it in a car parked outside registered to Wilson’s girlfriend and the rest in the house. They said they seized the money, the car and another car belonging to Wilson, along with a money-counting machine. No drugs were found in the house.

Mawm said Wilson’s status as the mayor’s son “has no bearing at all” on his treatment. But he and others at the news conference refused to say why Wilson had not been charged, or whether he will be.


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