Commonwealth v. Czop

Defendant engaged in criminal conduct in obtaining and executing several consultant inspection contracts with District 6 of the Pennsylvania Dept. of Transportation.Testimony before the grand jury showed Czop took steps to cultivate a relationship with District 6’s Assistant District Engineer (ADE). The evidence showed that Czop entered into an agreement with a close personal friend of the ADE, which was purportedly a consulting contract. In reality, however, the agreement was simply a method to secure contracts from the ADE, the grand jury presentment alleged. All told, CZOP Specter, Inc. and a related minority business sent more than $130,000 to the ADE’s friend, which, in turn, resulted in Czop being awarded at least four separate PennDOT consultant contracts, the grand jury presentment alleged. The grand jury presentment also details how Czop eventually developed his relationship with the ADE to the point where Czop was purportedly assisting in drafting a potential bridge cleaning inspection contract. Testimony before the grand jury alleged that it was known CZOP Specter, Inc. would be awarded this contract several months prior to it even being advertised. Czop was in fact awarded the contract in the summer of 2011.

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Commonwealth v. Suzenski, Crim. Complaint No. 36-595

The Pennsylvania Attorney General charged 8 men with a “pay to play” scheme involving contracts with the Pennsylvania Turnpike Authority. Defendant Suzenski is the owner of Commonwealth Consulting Services, Inc. and a partial owner of Twin County Construction. Commonwealth Consulting Services represents long-term vendors with the Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission. Suzenski lavishly entertained Hatalowich, Rubin, and others at the expense of his
clients in an effort to influence the awarding of
Turnpike work to both entities, as well as to directly benefit himself. The grand jury found that the eight individuals committed and attempted to commit illegal bid-rigging, commercial bribery, conflict of interest, theft by unlawful taking, theft by deception, criminal conspiracy and acting as a corrupt organization engaging in a pattern of racketeering activity.

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Commonwealth v. Miller, Crim. Comp. No. 36-595

The Pennsylvania Attorney General charged 8 men with a “pay to play” scheme involving contracts with the Pennsylvania Turnpike Authority. Miller is VP of State and Local Government and Education for Ciber, a contractor with the Pennsylvania Turnpick Authority. He allegedlly used his relationshipi with the Turnpike’s CIO to improperly influence the contracting process and duplicated and created unnecessary work billed to the Turnpike. The grand jury found that the eight individuals committed and attempted to commit illegal bid-rigging, commercial bribery, conflict of interest, theft by unlawful taking, theft by deception, criminal conspiracy and acting as a corrupt organization engaging in a pattern of racketeering activity.

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Commonwealth v. Hatalowich, Crim. Indictment No. 36-595 (Mar. 13, 2013)

The Pennsylvania Attorney General charged 8 men with a “pay to play” scheme involving contracts with the Pennsylvania Turnpike Authority. George Hatalowich is the former Chief Operating Officer (“COO”) and former Contracts Administrator of the Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission. Hatalowich took direction from Turnpike Chairman Rubin and Turnpike CEO Brimmeier, and exerted tremendous influence over the internal processes at the Turnpike, resulting in the award of Turnpike contracts to those vendors favored by certain Senate officials. The grand jury found that the eight individuals committed and attempted to commit illegal bid-rigging, commercial bribery, conflict of interest, theft by unlawful taking, theft by deception, criminal conspiracy and acting as a corrupt organization engaging in a pattern of racketeering activity.

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Commonwealth v. Brimmeier, Crim. Indictment No. 36-595 (Mar. 13, 2013)

The Pennsylvania Attorney General charged 8 men with a “pay to play” scheme involving contracts with the Pennsylvania Turnpike Authority. Defendant Joseph Brimmeier is the former Chief Executive Officer (“CEO”) of the Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission. Brimmeier was involved in all major decisions at the Turnpike. In addition, Brimmeier took orders directly from Senator Mellow, or his Chief of Staff, concerning the awarding of Turnpike contracts to particular vendors, and political fundraising efforts required of Turnpike personnel and Turnpike vendors. The grand jury found that the eight individuals committed and attempted to commit illegal bid-rigging, commercial bribery, conflict of interest, theft by unlawful taking, theft by deception, criminal conspiracy and acting as a corrupt organization engaging in a pattern of racketeering activity.

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Commonwealth v. Rubin, Crim. Comp. No. 36-595 (Mar. 13, 2013)

The Pennsylvania Attorney General charged 8 men with a “pay to play” scheme involving contracts with the Pennsylvania Turnpike Authority. Defendant Rubin was the head of the Pennsylvania Turnpike Authority. The Grand Jury report alleged that Rubin influenced contracting decisions made by executive staff at the Turnpike and regularly
advocated that campaign contributions be made by Turnpike vendors to a certain state senator and other state officials. In addition, Rubin personally benefitted financially from Turnpike work he
steered to City Line Abstract Company. The grand juryy found that the eight individuals committed and ateempted to commit illegal bid-rigging, commercial bribery, conflict of interest, theft by unlawful taking, theft by deception, criminal conspiracy and acting as a corrupt organization engaging in a pattern of racketeering activity.

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Commonwealth v. Mellow, Complaint No. 36-595 (Mar. 13, 2013)

The Pennsylvania Attorney General charged 8 men with a “pay to play” scheme involving contracts with the Pennsylvania Turnpike Authority. Defendant Mellow was the Democratic leader of the state Senate. The Grand Jury report alleged that he was actively involved in steering Turnpike contracts to particular vendors, imposting fundarising participation on Turnpike executive staff and Turnpike vendors, and personally benefiting from sports entertainment paid for by a significant vendor with the Turnpike.

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New York et al. v. Deutsche Telekom AG et al., No. 1:19-cv-5434 (S.D.N.Y.)

States challenged merger of T-Mobile and Sprint, the third and fourth-largest mobile telecommunications providers in the U.S., alleging that shrinking the national wireless carrier pool down from four to three providers would decrease competition and create higher prices for consumers. The US Department of Justice and seven states entered into a settlement with the parties…

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Settlement Agreement Between States and Five Guys Franchisor LLC

Fourteen states investigated “no-poach†agreements (clauses, often contained in franchise agreements, which prevent workers from switching between employers of the same franchise in order to obtain a better job with a higher salary or improved working conditions). The states settled with four national fast food franchisors, Dunkin’, Arby’s, Five Guys, and Little Caesars, who agreed to cease using “no-poach†agreements that restrict the rights of fast food workers to move from one franchise to another within the same restaurant chain. Under the terms of the settlements, the franchisors will stop including no-poach provisions in any of their franchise agreements and stop enforcing any franchise agreements already in place. The franchisors have also agreed to amend existing franchise agreements to remove no-poach provisions and to ask their franchisees to post notices in all locations to inform employees of the settlement. Finally, the franchisors will notify the attorneys general if one of their franchisees tries to restrict any employee from moving to another location under an existing no-poach provision. Since the investigation began, Wendy’s provided confirmation that it never used no-poach provisions in their contracts with franchisees. Investigations into Burger King, Popeyes, and Panera continue.

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Settlement Agreement Between States and Little Caesar Enterprises Inc.

Fourteen states investigated “no-poach†agreements (clauses, often contained in franchise agreements, which prevent workers from switching between employers of the same franchise in order to obtain a better job with a higher salary or improved working conditions). The states settled with four national fast food franchisors, Dunkin’, Arby’s, Five Guys, and Little Caesars, who agreed to cease using “no-poach†agreements that restrict the rights of fast food workers to move from one franchise to another within the same restaurant chain. Under the terms of the settlements, the franchisors will stop including no-poach provisions in any of their franchise agreements and stop enforcing any franchise agreements already in place. The franchisors have also agreed to amend existing franchise agreements to remove no-poach provisions and to ask their franchisees to post notices in all locations to inform employees of the settlement. Finally, the franchisors will notify the attorneys general if one of their franchisees tries to restrict any employee from moving to another location under an existing no-poach provision. Since the investigation began, Wendy’s provided confirmation that it never used no-poach provisions in their contracts with franchisees. Investigations into Burger King, Popeyes, and Panera continue.

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