#430 Feb 21, 2014
from last year
The Calderon family’s connections
Untangling the political web of a powerful Southern California family now under investigation by the FBI
By Byron Lutz | Aug. 21, 2013
#431 Feb 21, 2014
Contributed by: Dave Johnson, Los Angeles Times
#432 Feb 21, 2014
Richard Winton ‏@LAcrimes · 1m
Ron Calderon used brother Tom to move money, prosecutors allege
Ron Calderon accused of taking bribes from drobot and undercover FBI agents playing movie execs
Calderon scheme saw his daughter and son get jobs for cash with little work
"Corruption robs us of trust in government" said bill Lewis Specisl agent in charge of la office
Michael Drobot accused of paying illegal kickbacks to those referred to his spinal surgery biz. Kickbacks to doctors chiropractors
Ron Calderon took 100 k in bribes plus meals etc including some from michael drobiot says us atty
federsal documents show that Ron Calderon was confronted on a trip to vegas by undercover FBI agents last May.Calderon agreed to wear a wire
#433 Feb 21, 2014
Now what about Perez and Steinberg who did an end round of the Senate Ethics Committee.
Separation of Powers
The legislative branch does not have to wait on the Judicial branch to act.
Putting off an ethics investigation was a cop out by the Senate leadership (sic)
#434 Feb 21, 2014
Friday, February 21, 2014
Montebello (CD 14 East) Brothers Calderons, Ron and Tom, Indicted on Corruption Charges
The longtime Montebello (CD 14 East) Calderon Political Family is reeling after brothers Ron and Tom are Indicted on multiple counts of Corruption.
We ponder what a certain "Los Angeles City Councilman",
"two Los Angeles Public Officials" and a future
"State Senate President" (as noted in leaked FBI Affidavit),
may have to say about today's announcement?
Did I mention Steinberg and Perez above...
#435 Feb 21, 2014
By Randy Economy
SANTA ANA, CA—Members of the Federal Bureau of Investigation as well as the United States Attorney’s Office have released specific details regarding the indictment of Michael Drobot who is the former owner of Pacific Hospital in Long Beach.
Drobot was charged on Friday in a long-running health care fraud scheme that involved tens of millions of dollars in illegal kickbacks in exchange for referrals of thousands of patients who received spinal surgeries.
The case is directly tied to the indictments of current California State Senator Ronald Calderon and his brother former Assemblyman Thomas Calderon that were also revealed during a press conference in Los Angeles.
Federal officials are claiming that patient referrals to the Long Beach based hospital led to more than $500 million in bills being fraudulently submitted during last five years of the scheme, much of which was paid by the California worker’s compensation system.
Drobot, 69, who is a resident of tony Corona Del Mar in Orange County, was charged with orchestrating a wide-ranging conspiracy and with paying illegal kickbacks.
In a plea agreement also filed this morning,
Drobot agreed to plead guilty to the two counts, which could send him to federal prison for as long as 10 years.
(So Drobot gets to testify against Calderon et all)
As part of his plea agreement, Drobot has agreed to cooperate in the government’s ongoing investigation of the health care fraud scheme, which has been dubbed Operation Spinal Cap.
Drobot has also agreed to cooperate in the government’s prosecution of Ronald Calderon and his brother former Assemblyman Tom Calderon, who was also indicted
“Drobot has agreed to plead guilty in the health care fraud scheme, and as part of this agreement, he admits paying bribes to Ron Calderon in exchange for the senator’s help in keeping alive a law that brought massive profits to Drobot’s companies,” said United States Attorney André Birotte, Jr.
“Drobot also paid kickbacks, which are illegal under both California and federal law because they corrupt the doctor-patient relationship and may encourage medical professionals to recommend procedures that are not necessary, not in the patients’ best interest, or actually harmful to the patient.”
read the story- the above link works
#436 Feb 21, 2014
Thanks to Los Cerritos News!!!
Background, still a good read
FBI INFORMANT SAYS CENTRAL BASIN WATER DISTRICT RIGGED BIDS
Published on June 14th, 2013
Written by: Brian Hews
In an exclusive interview, Michael Franchek, the owner of EccoGreen Services based in San Diego County, told Hews Media Group-Community News that he has been interviewed extensively by agents of the Federal Bureau of Investigation regarding a complex case of bid rigging and influence peddling that directly involves former Assemblyman Tom Calderon, and former Bell Mayor George Cole.
The massive federal criminal probe appears to be centered on the Calderons, the Southeast Los Angeles County political family that has been in elected to public office for the past three decades and the Central Basin Municipal Water District.
FBI officials have been tight-lipped about the scope of their probe thus far but informant Franchek told Hews Media Group-Community News (HMG-CN) that Federal officials questioned him about how Tom Calderon and George Cole have been on the receiving end of lucrative contracts doled out by several public agencies including those at Central Basic Municipal Water District (CBMWD).
CBMWD services dozens of local municipalities in Southeast Los Angeles County including the cities of Cerritos, Norwalk, Montebello, Downey, Pico Rivera, Bell, Huntington Park and several others in the area.
“Everyone who works at the CBMWD literally bows to Tom Calderon and George Cole,” Franchek said.
#437 Feb 21, 2014
AS the story unfolded today- timeline
California State Senator Ronald Calderon and his brother former Assemblyman Thomas Calderon have been indicted on at least 31-felony counts it was announced on Friday by Federal investigators
Also, it is being alleged in the court filings that The California Legislative Latino Caucus made a $25,000 contribution to Californians for Diversity early last year.
Birotte said that additional arrests in the case are “probable,” but did not mention a specific time frame.
Sources also told HMG-CN that Ron has reached a plea deal with investigators and he, along with his brother Tom Calderon, will be indicted.
Calderon is being represented by famed criminal defense attorney Mark Gerragos.
A spokesperson for Calderon, Mario Beltran, referred all media calls to Gerragos.
In turn, a Gerragos spokesperson said that they “were aware of the press conference” but did “not want to comment further
#438 Feb 22, 2014
Timeline: Federal investigation into Ron Calderon, Pacific Hospital owner Michael Drobot
January 1, 1998 — December 31, 2002
Tom Calderon Elected
Ron Calderon's brother Tom Calderon elected to 58th Assembly District.
November 1, 2002
Ron Calderon Elected
Ron Calderon succeeds his brother to represent the 58th Assembly District.
November 1, 2006
Ron Calderon Elected to Senate
Ron Calderon is elected to 30th Senate District.
read more in above link
#439 Feb 22, 2014
Day late and a Dollar Short Steinberg who plays both sides of the fence
Indicted State Sen. Ron Calderon should resign, says Senate leader Darrell Steinberg
Where were Perez and Steinberg when LEADERSHIP was called for?
#440 Feb 22, 2014
State Sen. Ron Calderon’s lucky streak ended in Las Vegas.
For months, the Montebello Democrat quietly had taken bribes from a Hollywood studio owner, federal officials allege. Calderon also received free tickets to a Lady Gaga concert and scored a VIP table at a Nelly show, courtesy of the studio owner, court documents show.
But the high-roller lifestyle came to an end in May when Calderon walked into the Bellagio Hotel, believing he was meeting his studio friends, new court documents allege.
Instead, he was confronted by FBI agents.
His brother, Tom Calderon, a former assemblyman, was charged with conspiracy to commit money laundering and money laundering
But read on... There's more
#441 Feb 22, 2014
Owner of former Pacific Hospital pleads guilty to workers’ compensation fraud charges
LONG BEACH >> The former owner of a Long Beach hospital, whom prosecutors allege paid bribes to state Sen. Ron Calderon, pleaded guilty Friday to charges connected to a massive workers’ compensation scheme that cheated taxpayers out of hundreds of millions of dollars.
“The co-conspirators lined their pockets by ripping off insurance companies to the tune of hundreds of millions of dollars,” state Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones said in a statement.
Prosecutors said that Drobot paid $28,000 in bribes to Calderon, D-Montebello, to support legislation delaying or limiting changes in workers’ compensation laws that would have directly affected Drobot’s scheme.
The hospital submitted more than $500 million in fraudulent bills between 2008 and last year.
Much of the total was paid by the California workers’ compensation system, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office.
Prosecutors said Calderon arranged meetings between Drobot and other public officials and helped Drobot’s attempt to keep the pass-through law in effect.
The U.S. Attorney’s Office has charged Calderon and his brother, former state Assemblyman Tom Calderon, with political corruption connected to Drobot’s case and an FBI sting operation where agents posed as filmmakers to bribe the senator to introduce favorable legislation.
#442 Feb 22, 2014
Long Beach Pacific Hospital fraud called largest in California history
With Drobot now cooperating with the government, Weirich warned that his agency will find those who are breaking the law.
“I assure you, this is the first in many cases to come,” Weirich said.
Drobot “acknowledged and accepts responsibility for his actions. He is providing information to assist the government in its expanding investigations.”
Prosecutors also said that Drobot paid $28,000 in bribes to California Sen. Ron Calderon, D-Montebello, to support legislation delaying or limiting changes in workers compensation laws relating to the amount of money medical providers are reimbursed for performing spinal surgeries — a key part of Drobot’s scheme.
Calderon allegedly arranged meetings between Drobot and other public officials and helped Drobot try to persuade others to keep the pass-through law in effect, prosecutors said
#443 Feb 22, 2014
Connect the dots folks
Connecting Central Basin
attorney Arnold Glassman
Montebello Power broker Ed Vasquez
Vasquez was elected to CBMWD under a cloud of shady dealings and contributions from questionable sources. Engineering firm HDR, Sedgewick attorney Doug Wance, Ernie Camacho and his company Pacifica, MLJ Properties, owned by Camacho’s children, and Ron and Tom Calderon gave Vasquez over $14,000 for her campaign. Most of the contributors are now targets of the FBI and its investigation of CBMWD and the Calderons.
Check out Tom Calderon on the Montebello City Planning Commission, whoever appointed him and cook-Hill
#444 Feb 22, 2014
Then Mayor Rosie Vasquez appointed Tom Calderon to the Montebello City Planning Commission. This was at a time when Mayor Vasquez husband, Ed Vasquez, was elected to the Cental Basin Board of Directors. To make matters even more cozy, Tom Calderon just happened to be a well paid consultant to Central Basin, earning over $11,000 a Month. Nice bunch of change, huh? His main duty, from what I could tell, seemed to be to go to his brothers in the legislature and get them to do Central Basin's bidding. Nice work if you can get it, until the Feds maybe catch on. Fun times in the old play for pay.
So why dd a big time operator like Tom Calderon want to be Chairperson of the little local Montebello Planning Commission? The answer seems to be the proposed Montebello Hills Development. The first time the PR Consultant for Cook-Hill (the would-be developer of the hills) introduced himself to Tom Calderon, Calderon immediately asked for a meeting with Cook-Hill. This was witnessed by a local resident. It turns out that Cental Basin was working on a business arrangement with Cook-Hill. When an L.A. Times reporter asked Tom Calderon about the obvious conflict of interest, he denied that one existed.
Local residents opposed to the proposed development responded by obtaining documents from Central Basin which proved the conflict. After an attorney for the city spoke with Calderon about this, his response was to miss the next few Planning Commission meetings. Then Rosie Vasqez was defeated in her bid for re-election resulting in Calderon being off the Planning Commission.
Montebello dodged a big one. We too could be in the news on this corruption scandal.
#445 Feb 22, 2014
Wonder Why posts a reminder about another Calderon crony in another thread
Speaking of people who have friends who Used To Be in high places, Hadjinian has been known to travel to Sacramento to back up(and go on record for) Ron and Tom Calderon regarding pending legislation. One matter was SB1368 (regarding Central Basin Water District) which the Calderons and Hadjinian opposed. It passed overwhelmingly. Maybe it's time for Councilmember Hadjinian to show a little more caution"
More than caution is needed.
Time for Hadijinian to come clean (if that's possible)
Is he amount the "further prosecutions" mentioned?
#446 Feb 22, 2014
Found one missed by more frequent citizens
Calderon indictment could affect other races, supermajority
Democratic party caucus cowers and spins
What about Wright and ethics?
More than two hours after the indictments, the only public comment had come from Assemblywoman Cristina Garcia (D-Bell Gardens),
a leading critic of the Capitol culture.
“Today’s action by the US Attorney casts a shadow of corruption and greed over our government and all who serve as elected officials,” Garcia said.
The indictments also could affect the power Democrats have in the Senate.
Coming a month after Sen. Roderick Wright was found guilty of eight felony counts of perjury and voter fraud,
if Sen. Calderon is convicted it could jeopardize the Democratic supermajority in the Senate.
If both are forced out of office, Democrats would have 26 members, one short of a two-thirds majority.
Another question is whether the case will spark an effort to clean up the Legislature.
“The problem is there is a culture of lobbyists and special interests that are constantly wining and dining legislators and looking for opportunities to push the envelope,” said Kathay Feng, executive director of California Common Cause.“The bigger issue really has to do with whether leadership will have the guts to take on serious reform.”
#447 Feb 22, 2014
When the Calderons were my representatives over the hill here in South San Gabriel they were totally inaccessible.
Now we have been redistricted into a San Gabriel Valley district
(but South El Monte is included with Montebello)
Good riddance to bad rubbish
Calderon name may lose its luster in state politics
Corruption counts against Ron and Tom Calderon could affect political aspirations of other family members.
The Calderon family rose on its members' reputation as voracious campaign fundraisers willing to play political hardball. Various Calderons leveraged themselves and their kin into coveted chairmanships on powerful committees overseeing insurance, banking and other key industries.
The indictments were no surprise to many in and outside of state government, who said Ronald and Tom Calderon had reputations for pushing the envelope on ethics regulations, tapping campaign accounts and gifts from special interests to fund luxurious lifestyles.
"When we have done reports on gifts received by legislators from outside special interests, the Calderons are often times at the top of our list in terms of recipients," said Kathay Feng, executive director of California Common Cause.
Members of the Calderon clan have raised some $15 million in contributions for dozens of political committees since 2000.
More than $1 million of that money paid for golf outings to resorts in Las Vegas, Oregon, Hawaii and other locales.
An additional $220,000 in campaign donations funded steak dinners, and $4,000 went toward cigars, according to reports the Calderons filed with the state.
#448 Feb 22, 2014
List of links to LA Times stories
but it appears that others - Los Cerritos Journal- scoped the Times
WDN and that group have not stood up on the Wright Ethics issue
Letting Steinberg and Perez slide whereas Sacramento (and Fresno) Bee have called for prompt action By the Senate
There is a real conflict with the retention of a Supermajority by retaining unethical members and clean government
#450 Feb 22, 2014
Read very carefully
"He was stripped of committees four months ago, after he publicly asserted that Steinberg and state Sen. Kevin De Leon (D-Los Angeles) were the true targets of the FBI investigation."
THE FBI investigation meaning that specific one, it does not answer the question that there may be other investigations
Assistant U.S. Atty. Douglas M. Miller released a sworn affidavit Friday saying FBI agents never told Calderon that other senators were targeted in the probe.
Recall that Steinberg said that he was not a subject of THIS investigation
Which investigations ARE YOU A SUBJECT OF Darrell?
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