Connecticut Contractor Pleads Guilty to Paying Bribes for the Procurement of Consultation Contracts
BOSTON – The principal of a Connecticut environmental consulting firm pleaded guilty yesterday in federal court in Springfield in connection with paying bribes to procure consulting contracts at educational institutions in Massachusetts and New York.
Stephen Dinapoli, 42, of Wilton, Conn., pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy and two counts of bribery concerning programs receiving federal funds. U.S. District Court Judge Mark G. Mastroianni scheduled sentencing for April 20, 2022. Dinapoli was charged in August 2020.
Dinapoli is the principal of Big East Environmental, an environmental project management and consulting firm based in Connecticut. From 2015 to 2019, Dinapoli paid cash bribes to co-conspirator Floyd Young, who held positions involving facility maintenance at three collegiate institutions including American International College (AIC) in Springfield, Mass. Specifically, Dinapoli paid Young in cash during face-to-face meetings in order to obtain contracts for environmental consulting work at AIC, Cornell Tech and Cooper Union.
Young was charged in a separate case and, in August 2020, pleaded guilty to steering contracts for construction, repair, maintenance and other work for the collegiate institutions to favored contractors, including Dinapoli, in exchange for bribe payments typically in the amount of 15% of the contract.
The charge of conspiracy provides for a sentence of up to five years in prison, three years of supervised release and a fine of $250,000 or twice the gross gain or loss, whichever is greater. The charges of bribery concerning programs receiving federal funds each provide for a sentence of up to 10 years in prison, three years of supervised release and a fine of $250,000 or twice the gross gain or loss, whichever is greater. Sentences are imposed by a federal district court judge based upon the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.
Acting United States Attorney Nathaniel R. Mendell and Joseph R. Bonavolonta, Special Agent in Charge of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Boston Division made the announcement. Assistant U.S. Attorney Alex J. Grant of Mendell’s Springfield Branch Office is prosecuting the case.