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Search of senator's office involves water measures

Posted: June 5, 2013 5:48 p.m.
Updated: June 5, 2013 5:48 p.m.

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — The FBI investigation of California state Sen. Ron Calderon involves legislation he introduced for a Los Angeles-area water district that uses his brother as a consultant, according to two people questioned by federal agents.

Agents raided a state senator's two offices on Tuesday but the FBI wouldn't provide details on the investigation, which originated in Southern California. Two people told The Associated Press on Wednesday that they were questioned by the FBI about Calderon and his brother, Tom.

Michael Franchek, former vice president of EcoGreen Services, said agents contacted him twice and they discussed a deal his company lost out on to a firm linked to Tom Calderon, who was also a consultant for the Central Basin Municipal Water District.

And a Los Angeles-area elected official said agents asked him about legislation written by Ron Calderon for Central Basin. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because the investigation is ongoing.

Agents spent more than six hours Tuesday searching the main office of Calderon, a Democrat from the Los Angeles County city of Montebello.

The FBI also searched a separate office assigned to Calderon in the Legislative Office Building across the street from the Capitol, said the Senate's chief sergeant-at-arms, Tony Beard.

Beard previously said the second site was home to the Latino caucus. He clarified Wednesday that the Latino caucus moved into new offices earlier this year and its previous office is assigned to Calderon.

Laura Eimiller, a spokeswoman for the FBI office in Los Angeles, said the investigation was in its early stages and no arrests were imminent.

Calderon's spokesman, Rocky Rushing, said he could not comment and referred calls to Los Angeles attorney Mark Geragos. The lawyer did not return a telephone message Wednesday but previously said his client has done nothing wrong.

Geragos said he does not know what the FBI is investigating or whether the investigation includes others.

The search warrants, issued through the federal court in Sacramento, remained sealed, as did Calderon's Capitol office. A white sign on the office door read, "DO NOT ENTER. Call sergeant-at-arms."


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