A Florida resident has pleaded guilty in an 8(a) Program fraud case that seemingly has it all in terms of small business violations, from affiliation to subcontracting limits.
According to a press release issued by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Virginia, Michael Dunkel has pleaded guilty on charges of major government fraud, and faces the potential of significant prison time when sentencing occurs this fall.
A proposal submitted on behalf of an 8(a) company claimed that the company had performed a $3 million NASA contract even though no such contract existed, according to a recent report issued by the SBA Office of Inspector General. As alleged in the SBA OIG report, the same honesty-challenged 8(a) company claimed to have 33 employees, even though it never had more than two.
Perhaps it is little wonder that the company in question is alleged to have passed through nearly 100% of its work on several 8(a) set-asides to its non-8(a) subcontractor.
A soon-to-graduate 8(a) contractor submitted a fraudulent proposal designed to evade the 8(a) Program’s sole source limits, with the full knowledge of the procuring agency in question, according to a decision issued by the U.S. Court of Federal Claims.
As described in Veridyne Corporation v. United States, No. 06-150C (Fed.Cl. 2012),Veridyne Corporation greatly underestimated the cost of a contract in order to slip it under the 8(a) Program’s sole source threshold, but the scheme eventually collapsed, leaving Veridyne liable for false claims and procurement fraud–and leaving the procuring agency in question with egg on its face and a lot of explaining to do.