VDOT employees, truck company owners plead guilty to contract bribery charges
February 21, 2018
Six people have pleaded guilty to charges stemming from a fraud scheme involving two Virginia Department of Transportation employees and four trucking company owners, according to federal court documents. Snow-removal contracts were awarded under the condition the two VDOT employees received cash under the table.
During the 2010-11 snow season and up to his indictment in August 2017, Anthony Willie was the superintendent of maintenance at VDOT and Kenneth Duane Adams was his deputy. Both were responsible for awarding snow removal contracts. Among those chosen for the contracts:
- Rolando Alfonso Pineda Moran – owner of R&P Trucking
- Shaheen Sariri – operator of AMSC and AMZ
- John Lee Williamson – owner of Williamson Home Repairs
- Elmer Antonio Mejia – owner-operator of DW&J Trucking and DW&E Trucking.
In the case of Pineda, VDOT employees Willie and Adams received 5 percent to 7 percent of the total amount billed on each invoice to R&P Trucking in exchange for the contract. The two VDOT workers received approximately $30,000 from Pineda. Under similar conditions, Willie and Adams received approximately $55,000 from Sariri and another $55,000 from Williamson.
With Mejia’s contract, the scheme got a little deeper. In addition to a percentage of contracts awarded to Mejia’s trucking company, Adams also set up a shell company called Supreme Landscaping. Mejia documented Supreme Landscaping as a subcontractor and funneled money to Adams that way, despite no actual work being done by Supreme Landscaping. In total, Adams received about $160,000 from Mejia.
Contracts awarded through bribery from Willie and Adams totaled to more than $9 million, including $443,000 to Pineda, more than $2 million to Sariri, $4.3 million to Williamson and more than $2 million to Mejia.
Adams and Willie both pleaded guilty in November 2017 and were sentenced in February. Adams was sentenced to 64 months in prison, three years supervised release and ordered to pay $172,220. Willie will serve 84 months in prison, three years supervised release and must pay $221,720.
Williamson pleaded guilty in November and was sentenced in February to 90 days in prison and two years of supervised release, including six months of home confinement.
Mejia pleaded guilty and was sentenced to six months in prison, two years supervised release with six months home confinement and ordered to pay $224,276.
Pineda was sentenced to six months prison time, two years supervised release (six months home confinement) and must pay $110,953.
Sariri is the only defendant who has not been sentenced.