June 28, 2016
Milwaukee Man Indicted in a Scheme to Fraudulently Obtain Approximately $1 Million in Disadvantaged Business Enterprise Subcontracts
On June 28, 2016, Thomas Burse was indicted in U.S. District Court, Milwaukee, WI, on mail- and wire-fraud charges related to a scheme to fraudulently obtain approximately $1 million in DBE subcontracts. Burse allegedly provided fraudulent documents to WisDOT in order to expand his company’s DBE certification. Burse was also charged with mailing fraudulent invoices for DBE engineering services to prime contractors on federally funded highway projects.
This investigation was based on information from WisDOT alleging that Burse, owner of Buveck Consultants, LLC, a construction inspection and management services firm, submitted fraudulent college academic transcripts, a diploma, and cover letters claiming to have a bachelor of science degree in civil engineering. Burse was approved by WisDOT as a DBE to perform construction inspection and management services. DBE regulations required the DBE owner to have an overall understanding, managerial, and technical competence and experience directly related to the DBE’s operations.
Burse submitted a request to WisDOT to expand Buveck Consultants’ DBE status to include engineering services. In connection with this request, Burse submitted his resume in which Burse falsely represented that he had bachelor of science degrees in business administration and civil engineering from two separate Illinois-based universities. In fact, Burse only attended these universities for approximately 1 year and did not graduate or obtain a degree from either school. Based on Burse’s false submissions, WisDOT approved Burse’s request to expand Buveck Consultants’ DBE status. Using this expanded DBE status, Burse fraudulently obtained approximately $1 million in engineering contracts as a DBE.
DOT-OIG is conducting this investigation with assistance from WisDOT.
Note: Indictments, informations, and criminal complaints are only accusations by the Government. All defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.