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Filner attends mediation session with Allred, accuser

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SAN DIEGO (CBS 8) - Embattled Mayor Bob Filner did not return to work Monday at the City Administration Building, instead attending a mediation session regarding his future in a downtown San Diego office building.

According to an anonymous News 8 source, the mayor attended a mediation meeting with accuser Irene McCormack Jackson and her attorney Gloria Allred. City News Service confirmed that City Council President Todd Gloria and Councilman Kevin Faulconer were also taking part in the talks.

Late Monday afternoon, Allred and McCormack Jackson emerged from the building, but had no comment other than to say the mediation was "ongoing."

News 8's cameras were the only ones present when Filner walked into 101 West Broadway just before 9 a.m. Monday. It's the first time the mayor has been seen in public since he took a leave of absence for intensive behavioral therapy in early August.

Shortly after Filner's arrival Monday, Allred and McCormack Jackson were seen walking into the building. McCormack Jackson has filed suit against the mayor and the city alleging the mayor sexually harassed her during her tenure as his communications director.

Sources tell News 8 the mediation is taking place on the 17th floor in the offices of J. Lawrence Irving, a former federal judge who has handled over $10 billion in settlements for high-profile companies including Enron, World Com and AOL Time Warner.

The U.S. Attorney's office is also located at 101 West Broadway, which lead to early speculation the Department of Justice was involved, but was denied in a statement released by spokesperson Kelly Thornton.

"We have no knowledge of any such meeting, and if there is one, we're not involved," Thorton's statement said.

Filner took a leave of absence on August 5 to attend intensive therapy. His Irvine-based private lawyer, James Payne, said Filner took a "personal week" last week, but has not responded to inquiries about when he might return to work. The mayor's spokeswoman, Lena Lewis, told CNS that she would not answer questions Monday.

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