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DC Metro Contractor Indicted on Bribery Charge

Thursday, September 13, 2018

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An official from a civil and general construction contractor based in the suburbs of Washington, D.C., has been indicted on a single charge of attempting to bribe a public official, an allegation that reportedly stems from work on the D.C. Metro system.

Potomac Construction’s vice president, Hardutt Singh, was indicted Sept. 4, according to the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority’s Office of the Inspector General. The charge stems from an incident dating back to December 2016; according to the Washington Post, the bribe attempt related to the agency’s Disadvantaged Business Enterprise office.

Farragut North Station
Tony Webster, CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Potomac Construction, whose vice president has been indicted for attempted bribery of an official with the WMATA, was reportedly involved in the Farragut North Metro Station project.

Potomac refers to itself as a minority-owned business on its website, which details a number of projects carried out for WMATA. The firm was reportedly involved in the Farragut North Metro Station project, Yard 1 Facilities Rehabilitation Project and Metropolitan Branch Trail Extension, among other Metro jobs.

According to the company’s website, it was also the design-build contractor for the WMATA’s paint booth building in Hyattsville, Maryland.

The Post reports that Singh is accused of attempting to bribe Erick Wilkes, who at the time was manager of the DBE office. Wilkes is reportedly no longer with the office, but his departure was not related to the case. The case is still being investigated by the WMATA OIG, the FBI, the U.S. Department of Transportation's OIG and the Maryland State Attorney's office in Prince George's County.

According to the Post, Potomac is currently suspended from work for the WMATA while the investigation continues. The company has 15 open work orders in varying stages of completion; Potomac can appeal the suspension.


Tagged categories: Contractors; Criminal acts; Ethics; Mass transit; Public Transit

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