The US Attorney’s office in San Francisco charged a former high-ranking official in the state’s Veteran’s Affairs Department with antitrust violations related to the department’s construction contracts.
Prosecutors charged an Assistant Deputy Secretary and seven other individuals with bid rigging. This action follows an earlier investigation that led to charges against former California State Senator Leland Yee and other individuals associated with Chinatown gangs.
The Veterans Affairs Department sought to remodel the kitchen area of a veteran’s home in Los Angeles and to construct new residential facilities for veterans in Ventura County. Federal prosecutors alleged that the accused man took bribes of $12,000 in exchange for helping a developer win the two projects. The developer was actually an FBI informant. Prosecutors charged the other six defendants with fraud related to their bids on a renovation project for the Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.
Bid rigging came to the forefront after organized crime investigators intercepted a phone call between then State Senator Yee and the gang leader. Prosecutors won a conviction against both men. The gang leader received two life sentences under federal RICO statutes. Leland Yee received a 5-year sentence in exchange for accepting bribes and admitting that he told an undercover FBI agent that he could help buy weapons from dealers in the Philippines.
Los Angeles antitrust lawyer
Although this particular case stemmed from a separate investigation, federal and state investigators watch procurement and contracting processes carefully. A misstep in a public procurement process can lead to criminal charges. That’s why you need the advice and counsel of an experienced antitrust lawyer like Robert Helfend when you are facing antitrust charges.
Federal prosecutions are intense. While the likelihood of conviction is high, that doesn’t mean conviction is automatic, and it doesn’t mean there’s nothing you can do to defend yourself.
Contact Robert Helfend or call toll-free at (800) 834-6434, (310) 456-3317, (818) 591-2809 or (805) 273-5611 for an immediate consultation on your Los Angeles County antitrust case.
Photo Credit: non-euclidian photography, via FreeImages.com