LOS ANGELES – LawFuel.com – A San Francisco man was sentenced today to 18 months in federal prison for his role in a construction contract kickback scheme that targeted Huntington Memorial Hospital in Pasadena and Columbus Manufacturing, Inc. in the Bay Area.
Alexander Svidler, 54, was sentenced today by United States District Judge Percy Anderson. Svidler, the owner of the Burlingame-based AA Construction Company and Svala Construction, Inc., pleaded guilty in January to two counts of mail fraud.
When he pleaded guilty, Svidler admitted that he entered into a scheme with David Hamedany, the former director of construction for Huntington Memorial Hospital, and Tony Hamedany, the former director of engineering for Columbus, that caused the hospital and Columbus to suffer losses of more than $2.5 million. As a result of the scheme, Huntington Hospital paid approximately $2.3 million to Svidler’s companies for construction services that were never performed. Svidler retained 10 percent of the fees paid by the hospital for the bogus contracts and kicked back the remaining 90 percent to David Hamedany. The scheme involved multiple false invoices and billing statements over the years 2007 through 2010.
David Hamedany was sentenced in January to three years in federal prison and ordered to pay $4.8 million in restitution.
During the same period in which Huntington Hospital was victimized, Svidler’s companies performed construction services for Columbus, where David Hamedany’s brother, Tony Hamedany, was a director of engineering. According to prosecutors, Svidler paid at least $400,000 in kickbacks to Tony Hamedany to ensure that Svidler’s companies would be awarded contracts on a continuing basis.
Tony Hamedany pleaded guilty to two counts of mail fraud in October 2011 and is scheduled to be sentenced on November 13.
Svidler has already made restitution payments totaling $1.35 million – $850,000 to Huntington Memorial Hospital and $500,000 to Columbus.
As he imposed the 18-month sentence, Judge Anderson noted that Svidler had significant accomplishments as a business man, community leader and philanthropist. But, the judge went on to state that Svidler had “lost his moral compass.”
In pronouncing the 18-month sentence, Judge Anderson noted that Svidler had significant accomplishments as a business man, community leader and philanthropist. But, the judge went on to state, Svidler “lost his moral compass.”
Judge Anderson ordered Svidler to begin serving his sentence on February 19, 2013.
The investigation into the kickback schemes was conducted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
CONTACT: Assistant United States Attorney Angela J. Davis
Major Frauds Section