Contractor general wants fraud probe into Bacchus Engineering
Jerome Reynolds, Gleaner Writer
The Office of the Contractor General (OCG) has asked the National Contracts Commission (NCC) to disregard an application for re-registration from Bacchus Engineering Works Limited on the grounds of fraud and has referred the matter to the commissioner of police.
The OCG, in a report to Parliament, said it conducted an investigation which found that Bacchus' managing director, Robert Bacchus, included erroneous information on the company's application for re-registration in November 2013.
The report also calls for the police to conduct further investigations with regard to Robert Bacchus and a director of the company, Mark Bacchus, signing affidavits attesting that information on the application was truthful and correct.
Each person seeking to be registered with the NCC must sign a voluntary declaration form, on the pain of criminal prosecution, swearing to the accuracy of the information. Providing false material is a criminal offence under the Perjury Act and carries a fine and a prison term of no more than two years.
The OCG said its probe revealed that Bacchus Engineering's 2013 application included a résumé of a man which was discovered to be fraudulent. According to the OCG, the résumé indicated that Mark Randall was a technical staff member who was employed to the entity for 23 years. However, the OCG said during its probe, Randall was contacted and he disclosed that he has had no dealings with Bacchus Engineering since 2000.
The OCG said Randall was shown a copy of the résumé which was submitted with the 2013 application and he indicated that while the document looked familiar, he did not provide it to Bacchus or authorise the company to use the information.
Randall reportedly stated that the last time he gave a résumé to Bacchus Engineering was in 2010 when he and Robert Bacchus entered into a verbal agreement. The OCG said it was shown documents which indicated that Randall was paid a total of $100,000 by Bacchus Engineering in November 2013.
Randall said the money was payment from Robert Bacchus to use his name on the company application in 2010 for re-registration with the NCC. The OCG said during the probe, the managing director was asked about the money to which he said the sum was advance payment to Randall for future works.
However, the OCG said it found the assertion to be untrue, given the fact that Randall had been employed at Rural Water Supply Limited since September 2012, on a full-time basis.
The OCG said a further examination showed that the résumé on the 2010 application stated that Randall's employment with Bacchus Engineering was from 2008 to 2009. However, the résumé attached to the 2013 application stated that Randall was employed with the company from 2008 to present.
The OCG further stated that, on its 2013 application, Bacchus Engineering said in recent years, Randall carried out six projects for the company including the NHT Longville Project and the Cascade Water Supply Project.
However, the OCG said those works were never done on behalf of Bacchus Engineering but were carried out by Randall in his capacity at Rural Water Supply Limited.
The contractor general said arising from these instances of misrepresentation and erroneous information, there should be further investigation by the police in regard to forgery/falsification of documents and uttering of forged documents as it relates to the amendment and reliance upon the résumé from Randall, in the absence of his knowledge, for the 2013 NCC application.