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US (CA): Federal investigation into bribery targets SoCal public officials

Late last year, The Times reported that FBI agents had served search warrants at the city attorney’s office and the homes of two officials in other cities as part of an investigation into cannabis licensing and allegations that Baldwin Park officials had received illegal payments from businesses seeking permits.

Now, a federal grand jury has issued subpoenas seeking information about cash and other payments to public officials and cannabis consultants as part of a criminal investigation into cannabis licensing in Baldwin Park and nearby cities.

Federal authorities, including agents from the FBI and Internal Revenue Service, have been interviewing witnesses and are seeking a wide range of records regarding Baldwin Park city officials who approved cannabis licenses and consultants who helped businesses obtain the permits, according to interviews and a copy of a grand jury subpoena reviewed by The Times.

Agents are also probing connections between Baldwin Park businesses and consultants who have obtained or sought cannabis licenses in other cities, including Montebello and El Monte, according to the subpoena and interviews.

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