New York Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) and Owner Sentenced in Connection with Contract Fraud
Kahnawake-Mohawk Industries, Inc. (Mohawk), a certified DBE in Westbury, NY, and its owner, Francis Justin Buscher, were each sentenced in U.S. District Court, Central Islip, NY to three years probation; Mohawk was also ordered to forfeit $2 million. Guilty pleas in 2001 by Buscher to conspiracy charges and by Mohawk to money laundering charges stemmed from Buscher’s use of Mohawk as a ‘front’ DBE under approximately 26 subcontracts valued at about $18 million. Buscher prepared and submitted false certified payrolls in exchange for receiving 5% of the value of the subcontracts from other firms actually performing the subcontract work. FHWA suspended Buscher and Mohawk in May 2002; a decision on debarment is pending. This investigation was conducted jointly with the Federal Construction Fraud Task Force, Long Island, NY.