San Antonio Businessman Pleads Guilty to Role in Kickback Scheme Involving Local School District Insurance Plans
In San Antonio today, 46-year-old independent insurance consultant William O. Haff faces up to five years in federal prison after pleading guilty this afternoon to his role in a kickback/bribery scheme involving local school district insurance plans announced United States Attorney Richard Durbin, Jr., and FBI Special Agent in Charge Christopher Combs, San Antonio Division.
Appearing before United States District Judge Xavier Rodriguez, Haff pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud. According to court records, The Mullen Pension and Benefit Group LLP (the “Mullen Group”) was a limited partnership that did business in San Antonio and elsewhere. Among other things, the Mullen Group provided insurance and related services to state and local government entities, including school districts and municipalities, on behalf of various insurance companies. The Mullen Group received payment from these insurance companies in the form of commissions, ordinarily a certain percentage of revenue received by the insurance company from a particular contract.
By pleading guilty, Haff admitted that from March 2008, to February 2010, he accepted approximately $64,584 from the Mullen Group in exchange for providing confidential information concerning employee insurance plan Request For Proposals (RFP), including one issued by the Edgewood Independent School District in San Antonio, that was not available to competitors of the Mullen Group. Haff also admitted to accepting money from the Mullen Group for influencing Boards of Trustees for the School Districts to award insurance services contracts to clients of the Mullen Group. In July 2008, Haff accepted $2,500 for his recommendation of a Mullen Group client to the San Antonio ISD Board of Trustees.
“Haff schemed to enrich himself by effectively selling inside information to give the recipients an unfair competitive advantage, and thereby undermine the integrity of the public contracting process,” stated United States Attorney Richard L. Durbin, Jr.
Haff remains on bond pending sentencing scheduled for 1:30pm on July 13, 2016.
This investigation was conducted by special agents from the FBI. Assistant United States Attorneys Mark Roomberg and Joe Blackwell are prosecuting this case on behalf of the Government.