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SFS Mayor reacts swiftly to Serrano indictment; Council meets tonight

By Brian Hews

Reaction to the federal indictment of popular Santa Fe Springs City Councilman Joe Serrano on bribery charges has brought a swift statement from Mayor William Rounds.
Los Cerritos Community Newspaper spoke to Rounds this afternoon at around 4:30 p.m. and the Mayor said he was “devastated” over the situation. “I am shocked and saddened,” Rounds said. “I am surprised by this,” Rounds said.
The city council has a meeting beginning at 6 p.m. and the issue will be addressed in public. Asked if he has spoken to Serrano, Rounds confirmed that the two did speak. “I don’t want to get into what was said between Joe and myself at this time.”
Rounds released the following statement to the media:
“I’m greatly disappointed – as every Santa Fe Springs resident must be – by the news that Councilmember Serrano has been indicted on Federal Bribery charges. I’m also saddened for the City because his indictment may be seen as another example of widespread political corruption in southeast Los Angeles County. Let me assure you, nothing could be further from the truth.
Government in Santa Fe Springs is clean and transparent. We play by the rules. We take seriously our moral and ethical responsibilities and the trust that has been conferred on us by the community. And, we will not turn a blind eye to criminal behavior. Councilmember Serrano’s alleged actions do not at all represent the City or any other City officials, elected or otherwise. Government in Santa Fe Springs has been and will remain clean, open, and transparent. This is evidenced by the City’s year-long efforts to eradicate unpermitted marijuana dispensaries from the City.
Councilmember Serrano’s indictment begins a legal process that will bear out the facts. He faces difficult choices in the days ahead. It is my expectation that he will make the right choices for the good of both his family and the community-at-large.
As for me, Mayor Pro Tem Moore, and Councilmembers González and Trujillo – we are focused on preserving the trust of our residents, who should be confident that those who represent them in Santa Fe Springs serve the legitimate interests of all our residents and businesses, and no others.
Frankly, we have a time of rebuilding ahead of us. But, the City Council also has an opportunity to show our residents that – at its core – the City of Santa Fe Springs continues to stand for the values of fair, responsible, and honest government.”

Meanwhile, Dominic Cantalupo, Attorney for Serrano told LCCN that he has “no comment” about the “entire situation.”

But, Serrano did admit in a statement the indictment that “I am satisfied with the representation of my attorney in this matter, and am pleading guilty because I’m guilty of the charges and wish to take advantage of this agreement and not for any other reason.”

Los Cerritos Community Newspaper will be attending the meeting at SFS City Hall and will continue to update this situation throughout the evening.