Sen. Leland Yee's Lawyer Paul DeMeester Replaced By Jim Lassart

By Riya Bhattacharjee
|  Wednesday, Apr 2, 2014  |  Updated 1:20 PM PDT
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Sen. Leland Yee Changes Lawyers

NBC Bay Area

Sen. Leland Yee waves to reporter Christie Smith before he heads to federal court. March 31, 2014

State Sen. Leland Yee's lawyer Paul DeMeester will no longer be representing him against federal charges of corruption and gun trafficking.

DeMeester will be replaced by San Francisco attorney Jim Lassart. Lassart served 12 years as an assistant district attorney in San Francisco where he tried complex homicide cases followed by serving five years with the U.S. Attorney's office persecuting organized crime.

DeMeester confirmed to NBC Bay Area Wednesday that he is stepping aside but added that there was no conflict.

DeMeester said that as a long-time friend of Yee, he stepped in when the senator needed representation last Wednesday after was arrested during a FBI raid.

DeMeester told NBC Bay Area that he is pleased to have successfully assisted in the senator's release from federal custody.

State Sen. Leland Yee's lawyer Paul DeMeester speaks to reporters outside the San Francisco Federal Building.

NBC Bay Area's Tony Kovaleski contributed to this report.

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