BREAKING: Senate Suspends Three Senators Facing Legal Troubles

Calderon, Wright and Yee loose right to vote in state senate.

By City News Service

The state Senate voted Friday to suspend three of its members, including Senators Roderick Wright, D-Inglewood, and Ron Calderon, D-Montebello, both of whom are facing legal troubles.

Wright had previously taken an indefinite leave of absence from the Senate while he awaits sentencing on five counts of voter fraud, two counts of perjury and one count of filing a false declaration of candidacy. He faces up to eight years and four months behind bars, with sentencing set for May 16.

Prosecutors said he lied about living in Inglewood, using a property there as a prop while he actually lived in Baldwin Hills.

Calderon is facing federal charges of accepting more than $100,000 in cash bribes, as well as plane trips and dinners, in exchange for supporting legislation. Calderon is charged in a 24-count indictment with federal mail fraud, wire fraud, honest services fraud, bribery, conspiracy to commit money laundering, money laundering and aiding in the filing of false tax returns.

Calderon’s 59-year-old brother, Tom, is charged with conspiracy to commit money laundering and seven counts of money laundering for allegedly funneling bribe money through a nonprofit group and consulting company he operates.

The Senate also voted to suspend Sen. Leland Yee, D-San Francisco, who was arrested this week in connection with federal charges of corruption and conspiracy to take part in a gun-running operation.

The Senate voted 28-1 to suspend all three, who will continue to collect their salaries but will not be able to cast any votes in the Senate.

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March 28, 2014  Copyright © 2012 Eastern Group Publications, Inc.

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