Owner of Commercial Flooring Contractor Pleads Guilty to Participating in Kickback Scheme to Defraud a U.S. Army Facility | OPA

Owner of Commercial Flooring Contractor Pleads Guilty to Participating in Kickback Scheme to Defraud a U.S. Army Facility | OPA

The proprietor of a Fairbanks, Alaska, professional flooring firm, pleaded guilty on Sept. 22 for his purpose in a conspiracy to give kickbacks similar to contracts for professional flooring products and services at a U.S. Army Facility. 

Benjamin W. McCulloch pleaded guilty to five-depend felony costs submitted on Aug. 25, 2022, in the U.S. District Court for the District of Alaska. According to the plea, from March 2016 to March 2021, McCulloch conspired to pay kickbacks to an worker of a primary contractor relevant to flooring development contracts administered by the U.S. Army at Fort Wainwright. The fees point out that McCulloch conspired to inflate the costs of 4 flooring development subcontracts, and then delivered the proceeds to his co-conspirator as kickbacks. Throughout the 5-year plan, McCullough paid more than $100,000 in kickbacks.

“When subcontractors and prime contractors at U.S. Army amenities collude, they undermine competitiveness for authorities contracts and squander general public cash meant to bolster our nationwide defense,” said Assistant Attorney Typical Jonathan Kanter of the Justice Department’s Antitrust Division. “The division and our law enforcement partners will deliver to justice criminals who cheat on govt contracts.”

“Those who have interaction in fraudulent kickback strategies undermine the government’s aggressive contracting procedures, and hurt American taxpayers in the course of action,” said Specific Agent in Demand Antony Jung of the FBI’s Anchorage Area Business. “Detecting and disrupting these schemes will constantly be a priority for the FBI, and collectively with our partners, we will hold offenders accountable.”

“Today’s plea is a fitting end for those who conspire to defraud the U.S. Army,” mentioned Particular Agent in Charge L. Scott Moreland of the U.S. Military Criminal Investigation Division’s Key Procurement Fraud Subject Office. “The Army CID’s Key Procurement Fraud Industry Place of work is happy to operate with our federal law enforcement partners to protect the coffers of the U.S. government from individuals who crack the law and threaten economic damage to the U.S. Army.”

“The authorities contracting process is supposed to be a healthy opposition, not a rigged match with illegal kickbacks thrown in,” stated Unique Agent in Demand Bret Kressin of the IRS-Felony Investigation, Seattle Field Office. “Mr. McCulloch’s greed not only undermined the U.S. Military, but it hurt our communities when the stolen resources went directly to line his coconspirators’ pockets.”

“Mr. McCulloch’s responsible plea is a critical move forward in holding him, and perhaps some others, accountable for his illegal endeavours to enrich himself and some others by willfully committing a decades-long fraud against the U.S. Army and American taxpayer,” said Special Agent in Charge Bryan D. Denny of the Department of Protection, Office environment of Inspector General (DOD-OIG), Protection Prison Investigative Service (DCIS), Western Area Place of work. “DCIS and our associates will continually request to detect and eliminate kickback schemes, this kind of as individuals used by Mr. McCulloch, mainly because they corrupt the DoD procurement technique by unlawfully suppressing competitiveness and expanding costs.”

The charges to which McCulloch pleaded responsible have a optimum penalty of 10 years in prison and a great of $250,000. The fantastic for the anti-kickback conspiracy demand may well be enhanced to twice the obtain derived from the criminal offense or twice the decline endured by the victims of the crime, if possibly of those people amounts is increased than the statutory most great. In addition to his guilty plea, McCulloch has agreed to shell out restitution. 

The Antitrust Division’s San Francisco Office environment, the U.S. Attorney’s Office environment for the District of Alaska, the FBI’s Anchorage Area Office, the U.S. Military Criminal Investigation Division’s Important Procurement Fraud Discipline Business office, the DCIS’s Western Area Place of work in Seattle, and the IRS’s Prison-Investigation Seattle Business are investigating this case. 

Anybody with information in connection with this investigation is urged to make contact with  the Antitrust Division’s San Francisco Place of work at 415-934-5300, the Antitrust Division’s Citizen Criticism Heart at 888-647-3258 or http://www.justice.gov/atr/get in touch with/newcase.html, or the FBI’s Anchorage Discipline Business office at 907-276-4441.

In November 2019, the Office of Justice made the Procurement Collusion Strike Power (PCSF), a joint legislation enforcement hard work to battle antitrust crimes and connected fraudulent strategies that effect governing administration procurement, grant and system funding at all degrees of governing administration – federal, condition and area. To study much more about the PCSF, or to report data on current market allocation, cost fixing, bid rigging and other anticompetitive conduct linked to federal govt contracts, go to https://www.justice.gov/procurement-collusion-strike-drive.