LAWFUEL – US Attorney – Law News – Defendant Dewitt Jackson “Jack” Maxwell was sentenced today to sixty (60) months’ imprisonment following his November 2006 conviction on a scheme to defraud the Miami-Dade County Aviation Department and the Federal Aviation Administration at Miami International Airport in connection with the federal Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (“DBE”) program and the Miami-Dade County Community Small Business Enterprise (“CSBE”) program, announced R. Alexander Acosta, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Florida, Robert Parker, Director, Miami-Dade Police Department, Charles Hunter, Acting Special Agent in Charge, Internal Revenue Service, Criminal Investigation Division, John Long, Special Agent in Charge, United States Department of Transportation, Office of Inspector General, and Jonathan I. Solomon, Special Agent in Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation.
Maxwell was convicted at trial of one count of conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud, two counts of wire fraud, nine counts of mail fraud, one count of conspiracy to commit money laundering (18 U.S.C. §1956), five counts of promotional money laundering (18 U.S.C. §1956), one count of conspiracy to commit financial transaction money laundering (18 U.S.C. §1957), and four counts of financial transaction money laundering.
The case centered on the federal DBE program and the Miami-Dade CSBE program, which were designed to encourage the growth and development of qualifying minority-owned and small businesses in the construction industry. Consistent with federal regulation and county ordinance, participation goals under both programs were set as part of the Miami International Airport expansion project. As a result, businesses that qualified under either the DBE or CSBE program were allowed to bid for a part of the construction work at the Miami International Airport. Both programs, however, require that the DBE or CSBE entity perform the work of the contract and carry out its responsibilities by actually performing, managing, and supervising the work involved.
According to the evidence presented at trial, between approximately December 2001 and October 2004, Maxwell and others conspired to cause FLP Enterprises, Inc. (“FLP”), a DBE and CSBE company, to receive electrical construction work at Miami International Airport in satisfaction of DBE and CSBE participation requirements, but to have the work actually completed by Fisk Electric (“Fisk”), which was neither a DBE nor a CSBE. During the time at issue, Maxwell was the executive in charge of Fisk’s Miami office.
Defendant Maxwell accomplished his goal through a well-organized effort to both mislead the Miami-Dade County Aviation Department and others, and to conceal their scheme from these same entities. Maxwell and his co-conspirators caused bids to be submitted on behalf of both Fisk and FLP for electrical work at Miami International Airport, stating that FLP would perform a portion of that work in satisfaction of DBE or CSBE participation goals. As a result, approximately $ 8 million in electrical construction work was awarded to FLP. FLP, however, did not perform the work as represented in these bids. Instead, Fisk performed the work, even as the conspirators endeavored to conceal this reality from the Miami-Dade County Aviation Department and others. For the use of its name, FLP received a fee of between 3% and 5% of the value of the work assigned to it on paper.
Mr. Acosta commended the investigative efforts of the Miami-Dade Police Department, the Internal Revenue Service, the United States Department of Transportation – Office of Inspector General, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the State Attorney’s Office. This case was prosecuted by Senior Litigation Counsel Edward Stamm and Assistant United States Attorney Daniel Bernstein.
A copy of this press release may be found on the website of the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Florida at www.usdoj.gov/usao/fls . Related court documents and information may be found on the website of the District Court for the Southern District of Florida at http://www.flsd.uscourts.gov/ or on http://pacer.flsd.uscourts.gov/ .