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MC_CALDERON_05.JPGFederal officials said in a court filing Friday that state Sen. Ron Calderon wore a "wire" to record two conversations with another, unnamed person, but canceled a third meeting shortly before the FBI raided Calderon's Capitol office last summer.

The document was filed in response to a November filing in which Calderon accused authorities of leaking an FBI affidavit against him after he refused to participate in sting operation targeting other lawmakers.

The government said in its filing that the accusation is baseless.

"Calderon never refused to make the recordings and, at one point, he even encouraged the FBI agents to set up a meeting with the individual 'soon,'" the government filing said.

The filing comes as federal authorities announced a noon press conference in Los Angeles to announce they are filing charges in a political corruption case that sources said will involve Calderon.

It has been nearly four months since Al Jazeera America published a leaked affidavit alleging Calderon accepted $88,000 in bribes from an undercover agent and a hospital executive.

The government's filing Friday said two FBI agents told Calderon at a hotel in Las Vegas in May that they worked for a public corruption squad and had been investigating him "for quite some time."

The government said the agents interviewed Calderon for about three hours and offered him the opportunity to cooperate in their investigation. The agents had already obtained a search warrant for his Senate office but did not execute it at the time because Calderon agreed to cooperate, the government said.

Calderon agreed to wear a "wire" to record conversations with other public officials, the government said. It said Calderon recorded two conversations he had with an unidentified person. It said the conversations were brief and did not result in any criminal charges against that person.

The filing said Calderon was scheduled to meet with the person a third time but told the FBI on the day of the meeting that he was not feeling well and would contact agents the following week. The government said Calderon never contacted the FBI again, and that the FBI went forward with its investigation, including its raid of his Capitol office in June.

The government said FBI agents tried to talk with Calderon by telephone before searching his office, "but Calderon told the FBI agents via text message that he was not available to talk with them."

Calderon in November urged a judge to hold the FBI and U.S. Attorney's Office in Los Angeles in contempt, claiming the release of a sealed FBI affidavit "has prejudiced any future grand jury proceeding and irreparably tainted any future court proceedings involving Senator Calderon."

Calderon, D-Montebello, claimed FBI agents and federal prosecutors repeatedly pressured him to wear a wire. The government on Friday characterized Calderon as a willing participant and said it never demanded his cooperation.

"The only people Calderon said he was not willing to record were his family members," the filing said.

PHOTO: Senator Ron Calderon speaks to the media outside Senate chambers on June 10, 2013, at the state Capitol. The Sacramento Bee/Manny Crisostomo



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