A co-owner of a Middlesex, N.J., industrial pipes, valves and fittings supply company pleaded guilty today to one count of making a false statement, the Department of Justice announced.
Victor Boski pleaded guilty in the U.S. District Court of New Jersey to willfully making a materially false and fictitious statement to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) at a debarment proceeding. Previously, Boski and his company, National Industrial Supply LLC (NIS), had pleaded guilty on March 4, 2009, to participating in a kickback and fraud conspiracy to defraud the EPA at the Federal Creosote Superfund site located in Manville, N.J., and to defraud Tierra Solutions Inc., a general contractor based in The Woodlands, Texas, at the Diamond Alkali Superfund site in Newark, N.J., from approximately December 2000 to approximately September 2004. As outlined in the 2009 plea agreement, Boski provided $55,000 in kickbacks to two employees of the prime contractor responsible for awarding contracts at the two Superfund sites in exchange for the award of sub-contracts to NIS. These kickbacks included luxury vacations and payments to shell companies held by the two employees. Today’s guilty plea arises from false statements Boski made to the EPA in regard to his and NIS’s debarment hearing that resulted from the 2009 guilty pleas.
According to court documents, Boski appeared before the EPA on or about Nov. 30, 2011, on behalf of NIS to review his and NIS’s future eligibility to contract with the United States. During the course of the hearing, Boski falsely stated that he and NIS had paid kickbacks in the form of sporting event tickets and that the $55,000 in kickbacks he and NIS pleaded guilty to paying was an artificial number.
“When individuals plead guilty to participating in fraud and kickback schemes, it is crucial that that they do not then lie to government procurement officials about their conduct,” said Bill Baer, Assistant Attorney General in charge of the Justice Department’s Antitrust Division. “The division will vigorously prosecute individuals who make false statements regarding the crimes they have committed.”
Including Boski, nine individuals and three companies have pleaded guilty or been convicted of charges arising out of this investigation. More than $6 million in criminal fines and restitution have been imposed and six of the individuals have been sentenced to serve prison sentences ranging from five months to 14 years. One individual was sentenced to six months home confinement and the remaining two were sentenced to pay criminal fines and restitution. An additional individual, John A. Bennett, a Canadian citizen, was also charged on Aug. 31, 2009, and is facing extradition to the United States. Boski is scheduled to be sentenced on July 7, 2014, before Judge Susan D. Wigenton.
Boski faces a maximum penalty of five years in prison and a $250,000 fine. The maximum fine may be increased to twice the gain derived from the crime or twice the loss suffered by the victims if either of those amounts is greater than the statutory maximum fine.
The ongoing investigation is being conducted by the Antitrust Division’s New York Office, the EPA Office of Inspector General and the Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigation. Anyone with information concerning bid rigging, kickbacks, tax offenses or fraud relating to subcontracts awarded at the Federal Creosote and/or the Diamond Alkali sites should contact the Antitrust Division’s New York Office at 212-335-8000 or visit www.justice.gov/atr/contact/newcase.htm.