Turner Construction, Bloomberg Execs Indicted In $15M Bid-Rigging Scheme
More than a dozen construction executives and workers at Turner Construction Co., Bloomberg L.P. and various subcontractors have been charged for a bid-rigging and bribery scheme that prosecutors say was worth millions.
In all, 14 people and three companies were charged with counts of grand larceny, conspiracy, money laundering and bribery in unsealed indictments announced by the Manhattan District Attorney Tuesday. More than a dozen other people and companies have already pleaded guilty and cooperated with the investigation.
The allegations stem from interior build-out work at two Bloomberg offices in Manhattan, at 919 Third Ave. and 120 Park Ave. Besides under-the-table cash payments in exchange for insider information, one subcontractor illegally registered as a woman-owned business to position itself for work, even as it was being used to funnel contracts for kickbacks, prosecutors allege.
Former Bloomberg construction executives Anthony Guzzone and Michael Campana, along with former Turner executives Ronald Olson and Vito Nigro, were charged with stealing from Bloomberg by inflating contractor bids, falsifying work orders and misappropriating funds. The scheme ended up costing Bloomberg $15M, prosecutors said.
“New York’s sky-high construction costs are driven not only by market demand, but by pay-to-play industry corruption that makes it impossible for honest companies to compete,” District Attorney Cyrus Vance said in a statement. "Thanks to the unique expertise of prosecutors in my Office’s Rackets Bureau, as well as our partners in the New York State Police, this massive, years-long kickback scheme has come to an end."
The DA's office thanked Turner and Bloomberg for their help cooperating in the investigation, which did not implicate the two companies or their highest-ranking executives in the scheme.