On March 11, 2020, in the U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York, Paresh Patel, a former program manager and engineer at the New York State Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA), pleaded guilty to obstruction of justice. He was charged via information on February 18, 2020.
According to the information, Patel had been employed at the MTA for over 30 years. His responsibilities included oversight of capital projects, including Superstorm Sandy-related projects funded by DOT. During his employment at MTA, Patel and a coworker created Satkirti Consulting Engineering LLC (Satkirti) and allegedly placed it in their children’s names in an attempt to bypass MTA’s conflict-of-interest rules.
In 2014, the New York City Transit Authority, which is part of MTA, issued a request for proposals for a consultant construction management contract on a Sandy-related project. The prime contractor listed Satkirti as a subcontractor, which responded with a bid for services that cost approximately $1.02 million. Patel allegedly took steps to conceal his interest in Satkirti from MTA and to obstruct the subsequent Federal investigation by deleting corporate emails and requesting others to conceal his involvement when they were questioned by Federal agents.
DOT-OIG is conducting this investigation with MTA-OIG, and the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York is prosecuting the case.