State Sen. Ron Calderon, a Democrat from Montebello, took bribes in exchange for supporting legislation that would have extended tax credits to some low-budget films, according to Al Jazeera America, which bases its bombshell report on a federal affidavit it says it has obtained.
The organization also says Calderon's adult children, Ronald and Thomas, “collected more than $1 million in payments from people who have wanted to shape California laws to their benefit:”
As far as Calderon goes, the alleged bribes happened last year after he was approached by an agent posing as a downtown L.A. film producer who wanted tax credits for $1 million–plus films to apply to even cheaper productions, the report says.
Calderon allegedly agreed to support legislation that would lower the threshold to $750,000 in exchange for a $3,000-a-month job for his daughter, Jessica, according to the report. She ended up getting $27,000, it says.
Bribes included $5,000 in tuition to the Berklee College of Music in Boston for Calderon's son, Zachary, and a $3,939.56 Vegas nightclub bill, Al Jazeera says. All paid by the FBI.
There ended up being more than $60,000 paid, mostly through Calderon's children, the report says.
The FBI raided Calderon's Sacramento office in June.
Reached at a golf outing, the senator told the network, “I'm not going to answer anything right now.”
His lawyer, Mark Geragos, said tonight of the report, “My guess is, it is fabricated and untrue.”
— Mark Geragos (@markgeragos) October 31, 2013
Advertising disclosure: We may receive compensation for some of the links in our stories. Thank you for supporting LA Weekly and our advertisers.