WMATA Senior Program Manager Sentenced for Carrying Out Procurement Scheme

WMATA Senior Program Manager Sentenced for Carrying Out Procurement Scheme

            WASHINGTON – A former senior manager for the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (WMATA) was sentenced today to 18 months in prison for carrying out a scheme in which he and others manipulated the agency’s procurement process in favor of a company that was paid more than $1.3 million for items and services over a period of more than nine years.

            Scottie Borders, 61, of Arlington, Virginia, pleaded guilty in September 2022, in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, to conspiracy to commit wire fraud. In addition to the prison term, U.S. District Court Judge Christopher R. Cooper ordered 24 months of supervised release and restitution of $430,177.

            The sentenced was announced by U.S. Attorney Matthew Graves, Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (Metro) Inspector General Rene Febles, and Special Agent in Charge Wayne A. Jacobs, of the FBI’s Washington Field Office Criminal Division.

            According to the statement of offense submitted to the Court and admitted by Borders, Borders worked full-time as a Senior Program Manager for WMATA. In this capacity, he was involved in the selection, award, and administration of WMATA contracts with various vendors, contractors, and suppliers.

            The charge involves payments to a firm identified in the court documents as “Company 1.” This company, based in Millville, New Jersey, was a producer and supplier of traffic signs and safety products to various individuals, entities, and government agencies, including WMATA. As detailed in court documents, from approximately January 2011 through September 2020, in the District of Columbia, and elsewhere, Borders and others engaged in a scheme to unlawfully enrich themselves by securing the selection, award, and administration of contracts, bids, and purchase agreements between “Company 1” and WMATA for various traffic signs and safety products based on materially false representations made to WMATA, via wire, concerning the nature of the contracts, bids, and purchase agreements involving “Company 1” and others. 

            Borders was the primary point of contact for all business conducted between WMATA and “Company 1.”  He abused his position at WMATA, and his understanding of the contracting and procurement process, to manipulate bids for items and services in favor of the company by using materially false and fraudulent representations made to WMATA via wire by Borders and his co-conspirators.

            For example, Borders and his co-conspirators falsified price quotes and bids on behalf of companies that either did not submit bids to do business with WMATA or did not know that their information was being used in connection with specific WMATA bids. Borders also provided individuals at “Company 1” with information about potential competitors’ bids.  The purported quotes and fraudulent bid proposals were made up to ensure that the company secured the lucrative WMATA purchase orders and contracts at issue.  Additionally, Borders added unnecessary items to purchase orders that he submitted to WMATA on behalf of the company.

            Ultimately, WMATA paid “Company 1” for such invoices and orders secured and submitted through Borders.  Borders also procured purchase orders on behalf of WMATA, for equipment from the company that Borders knew was unnecessary, substandard, and/or never actually provided to WMATA. 

            During the relevant period, WMATA paid the company more than $1.3 million for various services and items, including poles, decals, bus stop signs, flags, and tools.  In exchange for facilitating these fraudulent bids and orders on behalf of WMATA, Borders was provided with items of value, including NFL tickets, by individuals affiliated with the company.

            This investigation was conducted by the FBI’s Washington Field Office and the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority, Office of Inspector General. The prosecution is being handled by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Leslie A. Goemaat and Anne P. McNamara of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia.

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