A minor figure in the expanding political storm over the Sheng Thao FBI raid says he’s had some major harassment and violence directed at him, and shots were fired at his home just days before the raid.

On Thursday, we posted a lengthy roundup of what we currently know about last week’s FBI raid on Mayor Sheng Thao’s home. And we don't know anything officially, because the FBI is not talking about why they conducted that raid on Thao’s home, plus the homes of prolific political  donors David and Andy Duong, and the offices of Cal Waste Solutions that the Duongs both operate. Thao continues to stress her innocence.

Our Thursday report referenced a ton of new reporting about alleged illegal campaign donations, detailed by the Chronicle, Oaklandside, and KGO. That KGO report was on an allegedly illegally funded 2022 Thao mayoral campaign mailer funded by an Oakland man named Mario Juarez, who just happens to be facing felony charges for bouncing the check for those mailers.  

Yet on Friday, the Chronicle reports the odd detail that gunshots were fired at Juarez’s home just 11 days before the raids. One might guess this is unrelated to the raids. After all, it’s Oakland. But the Chronicle also notes that Juarez was brutally attacked on May 3 — an attack that happened at the very Cal Waste Solutions office that the FBI raided.

Juarez’s attorney Ernesto Castillo says the shootings were an attempt on Juarez’s life, but told the Chronicle he was “not at liberty” to disclose why.

The Chronicle describes Juarez as “an Oakland businessman with a history of financial troubles who twice ran for city council.”

Both incidents were confirmed with Oakland Police Department reports that showed these incidents did occur at the dates and times described, though there are no names listed on any of those reports.

“He's lucky to be alive,” Castillo added to the Chronicle. “He was ambushed — severely beaten on one occasion and on another he was met with gunfire when he arrived to his home.”

Juarez was charged with a felony in January for bouncing the check, though the Chronicle cites his social media posts that say, “Not the first time a prosecutor charges an innocent person.” There is no evidence that Juarez is a target of, or even a subject of the ongoing and still-mysterious FBI investigation.

Related: Scandal Believed to Be Behind FBI’s Sheng Thao Raid Had 93 Alleged Illegal Donations — Some May Be to Recall Backers [SFist]

Image: NEW YORK, NEW YORK - MAY 02: Sheng Thao speaks onstage at the TAAF Heritage Month Summit at The Glasshouse on May 02, 2024 in New York City. (Photo by JP Yim/Getty Images for The Asian American Foundation)