Skip to comments.State Sen. Ron Calderon, Brother Indicted On Public Corruption Charges
Posted on 02/21/2014 12:52:51 PM PST by BenLurkin
LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) California State Sen. Ron Calderon and his brother have been indicted by a federal grand jury on multiple political corruption charges, including mail and wire fraud, bribery and money laundering, federal officials said Friday.
Calderon, 56, and his brother, 59-year-old Thomas M. Calderon and a former member of the California State Assembly, were named in a federal indictment Thursday, Department of Justice spokesman Thom Mrozek said. The lawmaker, who is traveling, has agreed to surrender to federal authorities Monday.
According to the 24-count indictment (PDF), Calderon was indicted for mail fraud, wire fraud, honest services fraud, bribery, conspiracy to commit money laundering, money laundering and aiding in the filing of false tax returns.
Tom Calderon was also charged in the money laundering conspiracy and money laundering and self-surrendered Friday morning, Mrozek said. He is expected to be arraigned Monday afternoon.
Senator Calderon is accused of accepting tens of thousands of dollars in bribes and using the powers of his elected office to enrich himself and his brother Tom, rather than for the benefit of the public he was sworn to serve, U.S. Attorney Andre Birotte Jr. said in a statement.
According to the indictment, Caleron allegedly took bribes from Michael Drobot, the former owner of Pacific Hospital in Long Beach, a major provider of spinal surgeries that were often paid by workers compensation programs. Drobot allegedly bribed Calderon to preserve a law that allowed Drobot maintain a health care fraud scheme taking advantage of health insurance companies.
Federal officials say Calderon is not implicated in the health care fraud scheme, but allegedly acted on Drobots behalf in exchange for employment for his college-age son, plane trips, golf outings and expensive dinners. Calderon also allegedly arranged meetings between Drobot and other public officials to help him maintain his health care fraud scheme.
In a federal case accusing him of conspiracy and paying illegal kickbacks filed Friday morning, Drobot admitted to paying bribes to Ron Calderon in a plea agreement, federal officials said.
According to the indictment, Calderon also solicited and accepted bribes from people he thought were with an independent film studio but were actually undercover FBI agents. Federal officials say Calderon agreed to support expanding a state law that gave tax credits to studios that produced independent films of at least $1 million in California in exchange for his daughter being paid $3,000 a month for a job he knew she was not performing, $5,000 for his sons college tuition and $25,000 for a non-profit political organization operated by the lawmaker.
The indictment alleges Calderon took several official actions to lower the threshold of this law to $750,00, including meeting with other state senators and introducing new legislation to create a separate tax credit.
Corruption victimizes each and every one of us. The indictment alleges Mr. Calderon traded influence for cash in the 30th District and beyond. In addition to robbing us of taxpayer money, corrupt practices rob us of trust in government, said Bill Lewis, the assistant director in charge of the FBIs Los Angeles field office, in a statement.
The embattled senator was stripped of his committee assignments in November amid a federal investigation involving allegations he accepted money in return for promoting certain bills. Calderons offices in Sacramento and Montebello were also raided by FBI agents in June.
Calderon represents the 30thSenate District, which includes Bell, La Mirada, Whittier, Montebello where he lives with his family and portions of Los Angeles.
Apparently, this crook has no party affiliation. How did he get elected in the late great state of Kalifornia?
Amazing isn’t it.
“Honest services fraud”?
Couldn’t most of Congress be indicted for that?
Ronald Steven Calderon (born August 12, 1957, in Montebello, California) is a Democratic California State Senator from the 30th Senate District. He was elected to the Senate in 2006.
I know. “unexpected”.
Absolutely no Party affiliation reported; therefore, we all know he is a DEMOCRAT.
Filthy, corrupt partisan MSM.
One-Party Rule Leads to Corruption in California
The truth is that the Democrats, who totally control policies in the state by virtue of “supermajorities” in both houses of the State Legislature, are making California increasingly poorer; the Census Bureau announced last week that California has the highest poverty rate in the nation for the second year in a row. Yet despite California’s dreary economic conditions, some of California’s Democratic lawmakers are making themselves or their campaign committees richer in a personal sort of “economic comeback,” and, in some cases, they are doing so by breaking the law.
One recent investigation into payoffs in the State Capitol has been breathtaking. Powerful liberal Democratic State Senator Ron Calderon recently had his office in the state capitol building raided by the FBIs Public Corruption Squad. According to the FBIs search warrant, which was obtained and released by the Al Jazeera American Network, probable cause for the raid included allegations that the Senator had received hundreds of thousands of dollars in bribes in exchange for legislative favors, including: $60,000 in bribes from an undercover FBI agent; another $28,000 in bribes from a hospital executive; and tens of thousands of dollars more in bribes paid to the State Senators brother through a nonprofit organization.
In other investigations, a Democratic Assemblyman from Watsonville was fined by the states campaign finance commission for illegally coordinating his successful election with an independent effort that spent tens of thousands of dollars. Another former Democratic State Senate leader faces record fines for misusing his campaign funds on concert tickets, fireworks, and expensive dinners.
Yet the revelations of Calderons alleged bribe-taking are the most serious and eye-opening. Calderon was a member of the California Film Commission, overseeing one of the states most important industries. Indeed, some of the alleged bribes he accepted had to do with establishing bogus tax credits for Hollywood film companies.
Members of the California Legislature have been scolded in some press accounts for their pay-to-play antics, and these usually involve Democrats.
Yup, no party affiliation and they didn’t tie the scandal to Bush. That might mean he is a democrat.
It's like no distinguishing physical characteristics of 'teen?' Consequently, Amish.
LOL at the media not reporting his party affiliation..he is a DEM like all other corrupted scum..now imagine if he were a Republican, now THAT would be flashed everywhere
The FBI press release:
Quite a link.
It would be the first word in the headline.
Ron Calderon Investigation: FBI Raids Offices Of California State Senator, Latino Legislative Caucus
SACRAMENTO, Calif. — The FBI searched the offices of a California state senator and the Legislature’s Latino caucus on Tuesday but would not disclose the reason for the investigation.
Laura Eimiller, a spokeswoman for the FBI office in Los Angeles, said the warrants were served at about 3 p.m. Six to eight agents left the Capitol more than six hours later carrying at least a half-dozen boxes and what appeared to be a computer hard drive.
She would not disclose the target of the search warrants, but Senate Chief Sergeant-at-Arms Tony Beard told The Associated Press it was Sen. Ron Calderon, a Democrat from the Los Angeles County city of Montebello.
“It’s a federal search warrant served on Sen. Calderon’s office. It’s a sealed search warrant. I don’t know what it relates to,” Beard said.
He said Calderon was not present during the search.
Calderon did not return a message left on his cellphone. His spokesman, Rocky Rushing, said he could not comment and referred calls to Los Angeles attorney Mark Geragos.
“I have a sense that they’re on a witch hunt,” Geragos said in a telephone interview. “My client refused to read their script and so this is what resulted....My client has done absolutely nothing wrong.”
He said he does not know what the FBI is investigating or if others also are targets of the investigation.
He contended the Justice Department is targeting his client, a Democrat, as “a bait and switch” to mute congressional Republicans’ outcry over recent disclosures, including that the department obtained telephone records from AP reporters and editors and private emails from a Fox News correspondent.
The lawmaker is part of a powerful Southern California political dynasty. His two brothers served in the state Legislature and his nephew, Ian Calderon, was elected to the Assembly last year.
He is known as a moderate, business-friendly Democrat. After his election to the Assembly in 2002, he was a member of the Assembly Moderate Caucus.
Calderon played a key role last year in brokering an agreement that led to new state laws governing foreclosures that went beyond the national mortgage settlement with the nation’s five largest banks.
State Sen. Ron Calderon should resign, immediately, before an emerging corruption and bribery scandal forces him from office in handcuffs. True, Calderon has yet to be charged with a crime. But the litany of allegations detailed in a 125-page federal affidavit leaked last week clearly indicate big charges will be coming quite soon.
The sealed affidavit obtained by cable TV channel Al Jazeera America alleges the senator and his brother have collected more than $1 million in payments in exchange for shaping legislation in the Capitol.
What an embarrassment for the people he supposedly represents, the heavily Latino southeast county communities of Norwalk, Pico Rivera, Montebello, Whittier, Bell and other areas. A compromised Calderon has no ability to serve them and needs to leave the Legislature now.
Calderon, protecting himself, has kept silent in the face of allegations so egregious that they could become part of Californias biggest political scandal in decades. The family political dynasty hes central to has been dogged for decades by tawdry realities and worse rumors. But page after page of the affidavit paints the picture of a greedy politician hungry to pocket money from anyone who offers it, a man with no qualms about using the power of his office as a tool to advance favors entirely for his own financial gain, a man who shows a chilling readiness to be bought off with opulent gifts, a man who does not belong in public office.
The first problem involves the former owner of Pacific Hospital of Long Beach, Michael Drobot. The affidavit accuses Drobot of giving Thomas Calderon, the senators brother, a $10,000 monthly consulting fee and $1 million in exchange for the brothers help ensuring that a legal loophole in state law went unchanged.
That loophole allegedly allowed Drobot to take tens of millions of dollars in workers compensation claims from the state.
The second part is the senators relationship with an undercover FBI agent posing as independent movie executive Rocky Patel. Calderon allegedly took $60,000 in bribes from the agent much of it funneled to his children in exchange for pushing legislation giving breaks to Hollywood.
The crook’s district includes Bell, home of the $700,000-a-year city manager and part-time city councilmen, who were paid $100,000 annually. And he’s indicted on corruption charges? What a shock.
Of course it would..it would state “REPUBLICAN(Yeah it would be in BIG letters) State Senator INDICTED on Public Corruption Charges” and then throughout the article it would keep on repeating REPUBLICAN REPUBLICAN REPUBLICAN
Actually I saw entire investigation piece on Al Jazeera America that scoop for them
Apparently the TV station CHANGED the sentence about him and identified him as a Dem.