Santa Clara Co. undersheriff, Apple security chief indicted in alleged concealed weapon scheme

SANTA CLARA COUNTY, Calif. (KGO) -- The Santa Clara County District Attorney's Office formally announced Monday morning indictments against the county's undersheriff and Apple's security chief as part of its ongoing investigation into a concealed weapons permit scheme.

DA Jeff Rosen announced the charges against Undersheriff Rick Sung and Thomas Moyer, the head of Global Security at Apple.

"It's a very sad day when law enforcement officers commit a crime," said Rosen. "When those who are sworn to uphold the law, violate the law, it tarnishes the badge, the reputations, and the effectiveness of all law enforcement agencies."

According to Rosen, Sung held back issuing concealed weapons permits to Apple's security team, until Moyer agreed to donate $70,000 worth of iPads to the sheriff's office.

Moyer's attorney is maintaining his client's innocence.

"Tom Moyer has nothing to do with any improprieties in the sheriff's department," said defense attorney Ed Swanson. "He knows nothing about a bribery scheme, because he wasn't asked to make a bribe and he didn't offer one."

Rosen says the iPad donation was pulled back once the DA's office issued search warrants into the case.

A total of seven indictments have now been issued in the alleged scheme, where some of the money went to Sheriff Laurie Smith's 2018 reelection campaign.

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Smith hasn't been charged.

Former undersheriff John Hirokawa says the sheriff should consider stepping down to preserve the integrity of the department.

"If she has nothing to do with it, then she should be doing something about it," he said. "They need to feel as though they're free to speak up and point out things, and for me, in the last several years, those things were being discouraged because you had to be loyal to the sheriff."

Criminal defense attorney and former Santa Clara County public defender Jaime Leanos says the district attorney's office is taking a methodical approach.

"This is generally how the indictment process works," said Leanos. "You go after the low-level players, then you go after the mid-level players, and then ultimately, your target is the highest-level person who you can criminally charge."

The District Attorney's office would not specify if the sheriff would be charged, but said the investigation was far from over.

"There's more witnesses for us to interview in the case and there's certainly more evidence for us to uncover and we'll see where that evidence takes us," said Rosen.

The Santa Clara Sheriff's Office issued a statement regarding Monday's indictments saying, "As law enforcement officers, we are held to the highest moral and ethical standards. This is a difficult time for our organization, however our goal remains to provide the highest level of public safety to the residents of Santa Clara County."

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