Former Miami-Dade County Public School Employee Charged in Bribery Scheme
A former employee of Miami-Dade County Public Schools has been charged with accepting bribery payments.
Benjamin G. Greenberg, Acting United States Attorney for the Southern District of Florida, and George L. Piro, Special Agent in Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Miami Field Office, made the announcement.
Andres Barroso, 52, of Hialeah, Florida, a former electrical foreman for Miami-Dade County Public Schools, was charged in by criminal information with conspiracy to commit bribery in programs receiving federal funds, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Sections 666 and 371.
As set forth in the charging document, as an electrical foreman for Miami-Dade County Public Schools, Barroso had the authority to order lighting products, including lamps and ballasts, on behalf of the school system. If the order exceeded $1,000, it was required to be a competitive bid and was awarded to the winning vendor. A co-conspirator owned a company that provided, among other items, lighting products, including lamps and ballasts.
Beginning in or about 2013, Barroso authorized the purchase of lighting products, including lamps and ballasts, on behalf of Miami-Dade County Public Schools, from the co-conspirator. If the order exceeded $1,000 and the order was required to be competitively bid, Barroso informed the co-conspirator of the amounts of the bids submitted by other vendors so that the co-conspirator could be able to submit the lowest bid.
The co-conspirator was awarded over 70 contracts to provide lighting products to Miami-Dade Public Schools. The co-conspirator provided some, but not all, of the ordered lighting products to the school system. Barroso falsely confirmed that all lighting products were received and submitted the invoice for payment to Miami-Dade Public Schools. As a result, Miami-Dade Public Schools paid the co-conspirator for products that were not actually provided.
Barroso and the co-conspirator split the money received from Miami-Dade Public Schools. From in or about 2013 and continuing through in or about 2015, Barroso accepted approximately $66,166 in U.S. currency intending to be influenced and rewarded for utilizing his official position.
Andres Barroso faces a statutory maximum term of 5 years in prison and a fine of $250,000.
Mr. Greenberg commended the investigative efforts of the FBI in connection with this matter. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Jeffrey N. Kaplan.
A criminal information or complaint merely contain accusations and a defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty in a court of law.
A copy of this press release may be found on the website of the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Florida at. Related court documents and information may be found on the website of the District Court for the Southern District of Florida at www.flsd.uscourts.gov or on http://pacer.flsd.uscourts.gov.