Ohio Painting Company And Owner Plead Guilty To Bribery And Conspiracy In Substandard Bridge Painting Work On A $2.5 Million Project
On July 28, American Painting Company, Inc. (APC), Campbell, OH, and its owner, Anthony Katsourakis, pled guilty in U.S. District Court in Cleveland, OH to felony charges of bribery and conspiracy in connection with a $2.5 million painting contract. Katsourakis admitted that, between May and December 2001, he conspired with others and bribed an Ohio Department of Transportation inspector by making cash payments totaling $24,000 and allowing use of his Florida condominium in exchange for approval of shoddy work (e.g., failure to properly scrape, sand-blast, and prime surfaces) on a federally-funded bridge painting project of Interstate 90, west of Cleveland. The estimated cost of re-painting the substandard bridge work is $7.5 million, three times the original amount. Both were suspended by FHWA pending proposed debarment, and both are scheduled for sentencing in October. This is an ongoing joint investigation with the FBI.