Oakland Port Official Steps Down Amid Strip Club Scandal

OAKLAND (CBS 5) — The executive director of the Port of Oakland has stepped down, amid a scandal involving the use of public money at a strip club.

On Monday, Omar Benjamin notified the port of his retirement, effective immediately. According to a statement by the Port of Oakland, acting executive director Deborah Ale Flint takes over day-to-day operations and directs the port’s key business plans.

Benjamin’s name has been connected to a $4,500 bill at a strip club in Houston, Texas in 2008. The bill was submitted for reimbursement by the port’s maritime director James Kwon. An investigation revealed Benjamin was at the strip club with Kwon, along with several shipping industry executives.

In October, Benjamin and Kwon were placed on administrative leave.

According to officials, Benjamin will not receive severance as part of his retirement package.

The port plans to discuss additional developments regarding policies and oversight at a meeting on Thursday, officials said.

(Copyright 2012 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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