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Apple Chief Security Officer Indicted for Bribery

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published by Chand Bellur
November 24, 2020 at 8:42 p.m.


  • Apple’s chief security officer, Thomas Moyer, was indicted by a grand jury for allegedly bribing the Santa Clara County Sheriff’s Office.
  • Prosecutors allege Moyer bribed two law enforcement officers with 200 iPads in exchange for four concealed weapons permits for Apple employees.
  • Moyer’s legal defense contends he is the victim of a conflict between the District Attorney’s and Sheriff’s offices.
  • Moyer never delivered the 200 iPads to the law enforcement officers.

Apple Head of Global Security Indicted for Bribery

Local politics may entangle one of the world’s largest corporations in an embarrassing legal battle. Santa Clara County prosecutors charged Apple Chief Security Officer Thomas Moyer with bribing two law enforcement officers with 200 iPads in exchange for four Apple employees’ concealed weapons permits. The officers, Undersheriff Rick Sung and Sheriff’s Captain James Jenson, were charged with requesting the tablets in exchange for concealed weapons permits.

Moyer’s attorney argues that his client is “collateral damage” in a battle between the Attorney General’s and Sheriff’s offices. District Attorney Jeff Rosen contends that law enforcement officers manipulated the iPad donation from Apple’s security chief:

“In the case of four CCW licenses withheld from Apple employees, Undersheriff Sung and Cpt. Jensen managed to extract from Thomas Moyer a promise that Apple would donate iPads to the Sheriff’s Office…” 

The recent indictments are part of a series of bribery investigations by District Attorney Rosen’s office. Two other cases implicate the officers with similar schemes to exchange CCW licenses for high-value items.

Apple released a statement contending that, after thorough investigation, they found no wrongdoing. Thomas Moyer will continue as Apple’s head of global security. 

California Concealed Weapons Permits Difficult to Obtain

California Concealed Weapons (CCW) permits are typically challenging to acquire, as the state has some of the nation’s strictest gun control laws. Applicants must demonstrate high moral character with a justified need to carry a firearm. Applicants must attend training and undergo background checks before being granted or renewing a CCW. CCW holders must renew the permits every two years.

Given the high value and requirements for the permits, Moyer’s case becomes a bit murkier. CCW’s typically go to applicants who attend training courses and require a concealed firearm. Any method of casually obtaining four CCW’s appears questionable, as the licenses are difficult to obtain.

In California, security guards are allowed to carry firearms; however, they must pass stringent training classes. Armed California security guards obtain a Bureau of Security and Investigative Services firearms permit. It’s unclear which Apple employees were to receive the CCW’s. Apple’s security guards can carry guns as their job requires, without a CCW.

A battle between two government entities may have entangled Thomas Moyer. The larger question is, who at Apple needs a concealed weapons permit? Security personnel require different licensing to use firearms on the job. Obtaining these permits, in absentia, for third-parties may be the larger issue. CCW’s require background checks and training. Why are four Apple employees exempt from California firearms regulations?


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