Federal prosecutors have served subpoenas on about 10 staff members in the California Legislature who may be called as witnesses in the August corruption trial of former state Sen. Ronald Calderon, Capitol sources confirmed Thursday.
It does not appear that any of the subpoenas issued so far are for senators, although Assemblyman Adam Gray's office confirmed he has been subpoenaed based on his work as a former aide to Calderon. Gray was Sen. Calderon’s legislative director from 2008 to 2011, advising him on bills coming up for votes.
Some elected officials are expected to be called as witnesses, according to Assistant U.S. Atty. Mack E. Jenkins.
“We are subpoenaing public officials for the Aug. 11 trial date,” Jenkins said. “They are potentially witnesses. It doesn’t necessarily mean they will testify, but it means they may potentially testify, so we want to make sure they are available during the trial.”
Jenkins would not say how many subpoenas have been issued, but Capitol sources who spoke on condition of anonymity because they are not authorized to comment on the case said about 10 had been delivered.
Calderon, a Democrat from Montebello, was indicted in February 2014 on 24 felony charges. They include accepting $88,000 in bribes in exchange for official actions involving bills affecting the film industry and workers’ compensation benefits. He has pleaded not guilty.
Jenkins described the officials subpoenaed so far as staffers. One of those officials, former Calderon chief of staff John Scribner, confirmed Thursday that he received a subpoena.
Scribner was on Calderon’s staff when the senator was pushing for changes to a bill to expand tax credits for the film industry.
“I did an email that says an amendment would trigger a two-thirds vote requirement,” Scribner said when asked what issue he might testify on. He is currently the top aide to Assemblyman Jimmy Gomez (D-Echo Park).
Another former Calderon staffer who has been contacted in the past by federal prosecutors is Assemblyman Adam Gray (D-Merced). A spokesman for Gray said Friday that Gray has been subpoenaed as a former staffer.
Representatives for Senate President Pro Tem Kevin de León (D-Los Angeles) did not return calls for comment on whether he would be a witness. De León was subpoenaed to testify to a grand jury that indicted Calderon and was said by federal officials to be a witness.
[Updated at 12:30 pm to reflect that Gray has been subpoenaed]