Via Miami New Times:
Apparently, it takes more than felony charges to dissuade the North Miami City Council from giving your company a six-digit payout. On October 9, by a vote of 4-1, council members in North Miami awarded a $270,000 contract to IMECO, Inc., for a streetscaping project at Pioneer Boulevard. That winning bid came in the wake of a much-maligned proposal to pay IMECO $99,000 to clean all of three blocks of sidewalk and amidst controversy over the company's general manager, Faustin Denis. He's currently on trial for racketeering and fraud stemming from a November 2009 arrest.
According to court records, from 2004 to 2008, Denis, through his company, APAC Group, received over $22 million in contracts from the city of Opa-Locka to do street and sidewalk repairs and maintenance. But the State Attorney's Office alleges that APAC got its contracts through a bribery and money laundering scheme concocted by Opa-Locka's city manager and a city engineering consultant, who then demanded kickbacks from Denis in exchange for the deals.
The system prosecutors say Denis and Opa-Locka Department of Public Works head Amir Shafi was simple. APAC would win contracts from the city because it would put in unreasonably low bids that didn't accurately reflect prices, court records show. The company was also given several no-bid contracts by Shafi. Then, after the job was begun, Denis would put in change orders to skyrocket prices anywhere from 150 to 200 percent. That extra money allegedly went into the pockets of Denis, Shafi and the other members of the fraud ring...
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