April 20, 2017
Former U.S. Merchant Marine Academy Supervisor Pleads Guilty to Bribery
On April 20, 2017, Frank DeCarlo pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court, Central Islip, New York to an information charging the receipt of bribes by a public official. DeCarlo is a former wood shop supervisor with the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy, Department of Public Works.
Between approximately January 2003 and November 2016, DeCarlo accepted cash bribes and free services from favored contractors in return for his influence in steering contracts to these vendors. He was responsible for drafting statements of work for construction-related jobs as well as soliciting and obtaining quotes from vendors. The kickback schemes included structuring purchases from vendors to remain below certain dollar thresholds to avoid the competitive bidding process. In other instances, DeCarlo instructed a cooperating witness (CW) to provide bogus “covering” bids, in addition to the CW’s actual bid, to guarantee contract awards. In those instances, the CW paid DeCarlo 10 percent of the contracted amounts.
DOT-OIG is working this investigation jointly with the Internal Revenue Service-Criminal Investigation.