Showing posts from May 26, 2013

US Ambassardor to Vietnam David Shear Visiting Little Saigon, Orange County


Attorney Tam Nguyen Announcing his 2014 City Council Campaign

Last month, the San Jose attorney Tam Nguyen publicly declared his candidacy for District 7 city council seat in 2014.  This is the seat that will be vacated by the controversial Madison Nguyen. 

It is quite an early announcement by any standard but Tam Nguyen was just trying to measure who are the other candidates.   Right now,  Cam Van Le is the only other person who is hungry for the seat.   Earlier in the year, she moved to District 7 from District 8.    However, she was surprised by Tam Nguyen announcement but she is determined to win the race anyway.

It will be an interesting race with 1/3 of the electorates in the district are Vietnamese-Americans.   Many believes that this a district where a Vietnamese-American candidate would be a favorite to win.   Neverthless, there are strong speculations that Maya Esparza is harboring interest in running for the seat, especially with Labor behind her.   

Our Lady of La Vang Cathedral in San Jose

After 25 years of persistent petitioning and sometimes with strong-arm tactics,  the Vietnamese-American Catholics in San Jose got part of their wish to have a parish that they can officially call their own.   On April 28, 2013,  Bishop Patrick McGrath announced the renaming of St. Patrick Proto-Cathedral Parish to be Our Lady of La Vang Parish.  

The St. Patrick Parish has served the Vietnamese-American community for the past 37 years and the parishioners are now predominately Vietnamese-Americans.    However, the San Jose Diocese had been reluctant to designated it as a Vietnamese-American parish.   It is not uncommon to have such designation in southern California, Texas, Virginia, Oregon, Washington, Maryland, Kansas, Oaklahoma, Florida and Louisiana.  There  are about 3 dozen Vietnamese-American parishes in the US that specifically serve the Vietnamese-American Catholic communities. 

So what prompted the change of heart by Bishop Patrick McGrath and his predecessor, Bishop Eme…

US Consulate in Vietnam Caught Taking Bribery For Visa Scheme

According to a McClatchy report, a consular officer allegedly sold visas for millions of dollars at the US Consulate in Ho Chi Minh City, and laundered millions in profits by buying real estate in Phuket and Bangkok.

The state department has been covering up the story for weeks but it was recently exposed by McClatchy. 

Foreign Service officer Michael T. Sestak was charged on conspiracy to commit visa fraud and bribery in an alleged scheme that investigators say spanned several countries. He and his cohorts charged Vietnamese  up to $70,000 each for visas granting legal entry to the United States.

The state deparment investigators say the alleged conspiracy occurred while Sestak was handling non-immigrant visas in the U.S. consulate in Ho Chi Minh City. Sestak served in the consulate until last September.  Sestak then moved the money out of Vietnam by using money launderers through offshore banks…

Scott Pham for Santa Clara County Supervisor

For the last two weeks,  LSI has been flooded with email from Scott Hung Pham about his campaign for the June 4 special election.    Scott was elected to the Alum Rock Union School Board in 2010.   He abruptedly resigned in 2012 and cited personal reason for his departure.  Now he is putting his name in the ballot with 5 other candidates for the recently vacated District 2 supervisor seat.  

In his latest email, Scott espoused interesting statistics to support his chance of winning.  He declared that based on his experience, there will be about  15,000 votes casted in this special election.   There are 20,000 Vietnamese-American registered voters in District 2; thus, he claimed, in bold letters with red color highlight, he only needs 7501 votes to win. 

He emphasized if the Viet turnout is high, he will have a very good chance of winning the election outright.   To further remind the community to vote for him, he included a picture of himself standing next to  the convicted felon L…