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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of Massachusetts

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Second City Official Charged in Music Festival Extortion

BOSTON - The City of Boston’s Chief of Staff of Intergovernmental Affairs, Timothy Sullivan, was arrested this morning after a federal grand jury indicted him in connection with the extortion of a music festival production company operating on City Hall Plaza. 

Sullivan, 36, of Dorchester, was indicted in a two-count federal indictment charging him with conspiracy to extort a company and extortion of that company.  In May 2016, Kenneth Brissette, 52, of Boston was indicted on extortion of the same company. 

Brissette was indicted for extorting a company which had already contracted with a non-union company to provide workers for a September 2014 music festival.  It is alleged that between July and September 2014, while the company was awaiting the issuance of certain permits and approvals required for its music festival, Brissette and Sullivan repeatedly advised the company that it would need to hire members of Local 11 to work at the music festival.  Local 11 had attempted to obtain work from the company since March 2013.  The company told Brissette and Sullivan that it had already entered into a contract with a non-union company and hired all of its labor.  Nevertheless, Brissette and Sullivan allegedly insisted that half of the company’s labor force consist of union members, although they ultimately agreed that eight members of Local 11 would suffice.  As a result of these City officials’ demands three days before the music festival the company entered into a contract with Local 11 for eight additional laborers and one foreman.  Shortly thereafter, the City of Boston issued the necessary permits.

Today’s indictment is a superseding indictment, which added two counts against Sullivan and one more count against Brissette.

The charge of extortion provides a sentence of no greater than 20 years in prison, three years of supervised release and a fine of $250,000.  The charge of conspiracy to extort provides a sentence of no greater than 20 years in prison, three years of supervised release and a fine of $250,000.  Actual sentences for federal crimes are typically less than the maximum penalties.  Sentences are imposed by a federal district court judge based upon the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.

United States Attorney Carmen M. Ortiz; Harold H. Shaw, Special Agent in Charge of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Boston Field Division; Jonathan Mellone, Special Agent in Charge of the New York Region of the Department of Labor, Office of Inspector General, Office of Labor Racketeering and Fraud Investigation; and Nikitas Splagounias, Special Agent in Charge of the Department of Labor, Office of Inspector General, Office of Labor Racketeering and Fraud Investigation, made the announcement today.  The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Laura J. Kaplan and Kristina Barclay of Ortiz’s Criminal Division.

The details contained in the Indictment are allegations.  The defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.

Topic: 
Open Government
Public Corruption
Updated June 29, 2016