February 2, 2024
Oakland, CA – Alameda County District Attorney Pamela Price joined a statewide coalition of District Attorneys in announcing Tesla, Inc.’s (“Tesla”) agreement to pay $1,500,000 to settle allegations Tesla violated California’s environmental hazardous waste control laws. The settlement also imposes a five-year injunction on Tesla to ensure its future compliance with those laws. The Alameda County District Attorney’s Office will receive $312,500 from the agreement.
The settlement resolves a nearly six-year investigation into Tesla’s alleged illegal disposal of hazardous waste at its electric car service centers, solar energy centers, and its Alameda County electric vehicle factory in Fremont. Tesla, in addition to manufacturing its electric vehicles in Fremont, also owns and operates approximately 57 electric car service centers and 18 solar energy facilities throughout California.
“Although Tesla denied any wrongdoing, this settlement and the injunction imposed on it ensures the company will follow environmental laws,” said Alameda County District Attorney Pamela Price. “I am happy that Tesla was willing to work closely with investigators from our Consumer Justice Bureau and took steps early on at its Fremont manufacturing plant to prevent any more hazardous automotive or manufacturing waste from going into landfills.”
Starting in 2019, Alameda County District Attorney investigators joined other counties’ investigators in conducting undercover inspections of Tesla’s trash receptacles at Tesla’s electric car service centers as well as its Fremont manufacturing plant. These waste inspections intercepted hazardous automotive wastes that otherwise illegally would have gone into county landfills (i.e., lubricating oils, brake cleaners, lead acid, and other batteries, aerosols, antifreeze, waste solvents and other cleaners, electronic waste, waste paint, and other debris). Among the hazardous wastes that Alameda County investigators found illegally disposed of at the Fremont factory were metal car panel welding spatter waste (which can contain copper), waste paint, and primer-contaminated wipes/debris.
As part of the settlement, Tesla is ordered to pay $1,300,000 in civil penalties and $200,000 to reimburse the costs of the investigation, to be divided among the participating counties. (Alameda County will receive $275,000 in civil penalties and $37,500 in costs, the highest share of civil penalties.) Tesla also must comply with a detailed injunction for five years that includes requirements that it properly train its waste-handling employees regarding hazardous waste control laws and hire a third-party consultant to conduct annual waste audits at ten percent of its California facilities. The injunction specifically requires the Fremont factory be among the facilities audited annually.
Convicted Man to be Sentenced 8 Years in State Prison After Accepting a Plea Deal for Allegations of Human Sex Trafficking in Alameda County
January 29, 2024
Oakland, CA – District Attorney Pamela Price announced that one of her sexual assault prosecution team members secured the conviction of Ricky Levi (31) on a felony charge, human trafficking of an adult.
On January 4, 2024, the defendant accepted an 8-year plea bargain reached by the prosecution and the defense. Mr. Levi is accused of convincing his domestic partner to sell her body for his financial gain. He then trafficked her between Oakland and Los Angeles. The facts of the case include that the defendant physically and sexually assaulted his victim, vandalized her property, and brandished a firearm toward her.
“Our dedicated prosecution team is committed to preventing human trafficking, raising awareness about this form of modern-day slavery, and doing what we can to combat it,” said DA Price. “We are taking a concerted approach to addressing this issue. Mr. Levi is among those convicted by my office for human trafficking in the month of January and demonstrates that in 2024, we are starting the year doing as much as we can to prosecute and convict anyone guilty of trafficking children and adults in Alameda County.”
Ricky Levi will return to court on March 11, 2024, where he is expected be sentenced to 8 years in state prison.
The Alameda County District Attorney’s Office (DAO) is one of California’s largest prosecutors’ offices and is led by Alameda County’s first Black woman District Attorney, Pamela Price. Price brings her vision to this office to fairly administer justice in the pursuit of thriving, healthy, and safe communities for every person who steps foot in Alameda County, no matter their race, gender, religion, sexual orientation, income, or zip code. Price has been recognized as one of the most progressive prosecutors through her forward-thinking, innovative strategies to interrupt cycles of violence and crime and bring change to a criminal justice system rooted in systemic racism. Follow Madam DA on Twitter and Facebook @AlamedaCountyda.
Alameda County District Attorney Pamela Price’s H.E.A.R.T. Team to Lead Anti-Human Trafficking Event in Oakland
January 23, 2024
Oakland, CA – On Wednesday, January 24, 2024, Alameda County District Attorney Pamela Price’s Human Exploitation Assistance and Response Team leads a Public Safety March, Rally, and Resource Fair in Oakland’s San Antonio Neighborhood.
The Public Safety March starts at 2:00 PM at the intersection of 17th Ave & International Blvd. It will proceed to the Rally and Resource Fair at San Antonio Park, a few blocks away from a frequent human trafficking hub commonly referred to as “the Blade.”
“During this month’s two safety walks with the H.E.A.R.T. Team, I saw with my own eyes the realities of human trafficking in our community,” said DA Pamela Price. “I saw adults and young people, many of whom I believe to be children as young as 13, standing in the rain for hours. We offered help, and some accepted. We hope to reach more people willing to accept assistance on Wednesday.”
These events are happening during National Human Trafficking Awareness Month and bring together several partnering organizations, community groups, and law enforcement agencies including Alameda County DA’s Victim Witness Assistance Division, BAWAR, Banteay Srei, EBAYC, Alameda County District Attorney Family Justice Center, F.B.I., FOSAP, Justice At Last, Highland Hospital, Love Never Fails, MISSEY, Nola Brantley of Nola Brantley Speaks, the Oakland Police Department, Oakland Unified School District, Planned Parenthood, SHADE, and TRYBE.
The Alameda County District Attorney’s Office (DAO) is one of California’s largest prosecutors’ offices and is led by Alameda County’s first Black woman District Attorney Pamela Y. Price. Price brings her vision to this office to fairly administer justice in the pursuit of thriving, healthy, and safe communities for every person who steps foot in Alameda County, no matter their race, gender, religion, sexual orientation, income, or zip code. Price has been recognized as one of the most progressive prosecutors through her forward-thinking, innovative strategies to interrupt cycles of violence and crime and bring change to a criminal justice system rooted in systemic racism.
Follow Madam DA on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook, and @AlamedaCountyda on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook.