August 22, 2017
New Jersey Husband and Wife Charged in Attempted DBE Bribery Scheme
On August 22, 2017, Abboud Wali and Nazik Modawi, owners of Safe Rides, LLC. (Safe Rides), Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, were indicted in U.S. District Court, Philadelphia, on conspiracy and bribery charges. Wali and Modawi allegedly attempted to bribe a Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) specialist at the Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority (SEPTA), one of five certifying agencies of the Pennsylvania Unified Certification Program (PA UCP).
The indictment alleges that between November 2016 and December 2016, Modawi gave a SEPTA specialist an envelope containing $5,000 in cash for the purpose of expediting Safe Rides’ DBE application. Furthermore, the indictment alleges that on a separate occasion, Wali and Modawi met with an undercover agent posing as a SEPTA employee and provided the agent with an envelope containing $5,000 in cash, again to expedite their DBE application.
DOT-OIG is conducting this investigation with the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and SEPTA-OIG.
Note: Indictments, informations, and criminal complaints are only accusations by the Government. All defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.