THE FINFORENSIC GROUP
A Financial Investigation Company
              

What is "Public Corruption"?

Government Procurement officials are responsible for the expenditure of taxpayer funds for the purchase of goods and services.  Fraud and corruption of the procurement process impacts upon the ability to effectively obtain the goods and services needed at the lowest competitive price and in a timely fashion.  Further, the practices that undermine the public perception of integrity of the procurement process impair the ability of all governmental entities to garner support of their legitimate procurement needs. 

Taxpayers have rightfully demanded that government spend tax money wisely and effectively.  Preserving competition and ensuring the integrity of the procurement process provides government purchasing officials with the ability to obtain goods and services at the lowest possible cost and build public confidence that taxpayer funds are being spent wisely. 

Fraudulent and corrupt practices take a variety of forms and it's not possible to describe all manifestations. There are many statutes and applicable regulations which government contractors violate whether knowingly or unknowingly which may constitute civil violations under the federal contracts issued by the General Service Administration ("GSA") and the U.S. Small Business Administration ("SBA") where the Federal Acquisition Regulations ("FAR") govern and are applicable along with other federal laws and regulations as well as state contracts issued by the Division of Purchase and Property, Department of the Treasury, State of New Jersey Set-Aside Act for Small Businesses, Female Businesses, and Minority Businesses" N.J.S.A. 52:32-17 as well as government contracts under the Local Public Contracts Law N.J.S.A. 40A:11-1 et seq. and N.J.A.C. 5:34 and the Pubic School Contracts Law N.J.S.A. 18A:18A-1 et seq. and applicable regulations under N.J.A.C. 6A:23A-1 et. seq. and N.J.A.C. 5:34 et. seq., respectively.

In addition, there are also violations, which may also constitute possible criminal violations under the law. Nevertheless, the following are some examples of common practices, which may be illegal under federal and state law. Some may violate the civil statutes and application regulations while others may also violate various criminal laws and anti-trust laws:

Misrepresentations

It is illegal for a vendor to intentionally misrepresent an important fact in connection with a government contract. The misrepresentation need not be in writing and need not be in a certification. Any material misrepresentation will violate the law. Moreover, it is illegal to make such misrepresentation during any part of the negotiation, bid, award or administration of the contract.

False Claims
It is illegal for a vendor to knowingly make a false claim for payment in connection with a government contract.

Bid-rigging
Competitors may not agree in any way to affect the outcome of a competitive bid process. They may not agree who will win the bid, what bids each will submit, that a bidder will not submit a bid or to rotate who will win particular contracts.

B ribery
A vendor may not offer or give any benefit to a public official in exchange for an official act or an act that violates the public official’s duty. Similarly, a public official may not solicit or take any benefit from a vendor in exchange for an official act or violation of his/her duty. “Benefit” includes anything regarded by the recipient as a gain or advantage to him/herself or to a person or entity in whose welfare he/she is interested.

Gratuity
A vendor may not offer or give any benefit to a public official because of official acts by the public official or because the public official properly or improperly assisted the vendor. Similarly, a public official may not solicit or take such benefits.

Gifts
A public official may not solicit or take any benefit from a vendor that is not permitted by law. In other words, a public official should be sure that there is legal authority to accept any benefit from a vendor or potential vendor.

Conflict of Interest

A public official may not transact business on behalf of the government with any business in which the official or any member of his/her family has a financial interest. Further, a public official may not receive any benefit directly or indirectly from any contract for goods or services to be provided to the governmental entity where he/she works. Contracting officials, vendors, professionals and other individuals must be vigilant to detect potential violations of law, which corrupt or derail the competitive bid and normal procurement process.

***WE LEVEL THE PLAYING FIELD***

We serve government contractors with our specialized services of “Procurement Fraud Detection”.  We level the playing field by exposing unlawful activities to government agencies including, but not limited to, misrepresentations, public corruption and other violations under federal and state law and seek to establish a fair and competitive bid process for government contractors.