Contractor

American Military Contractor Pleads Guilty to Conspiracy to Steal Government Equipment from U.S. Military Base in Afghanistan

An American military contractor pleaded guilty on October 13 to her role in a theft ring on a military installation in Kandahar, Afghanistan.

Varita V. Quincy, 35, of Snellville, Georgia pleaded guilty before U.S. Magistrate Judge Douglas E. Miller to one count of conspiracy to defraud the United States and one count of making false official statements. Sentencing is set for February 23, 2021 before Judge Rebecca Beach Smith.

Quincy admitted that, between April 2015 and July 2015, she, Larry J. Green of Chesapeake, Virginia, and others conspired to steal, and did steal, equipment and property of value to the United States while working for a government contractor operating on Kandahar Airfield, in Kandahar, Afghanistan. Kandahar Airfield was used by U.S. military forces to support U.S. military missions throughout Afghanistan. 

Quincy was a supervisor in the office that issued security badges required for the movement of personnel and property on and off Kandahar Airfield. Quincy admitted that as part of the conspiracy, Green identified items of value to steal, such as vehicles, generators, refrigerators, and other equipment. Green negotiated the sale of those items with persons outside of the installation. Quincy then facilitated the thefts by creating false official documents, or instructing those she supervised to prepare such documents, to facilitate the entry of unknown and unvetted Afghan nationals and their vehicles on to the military installation to remove the stolen property.  Quincy shared in the profits from this scheme. The false documents she created, or directed others to create, were used to deceive security officers and gate guards and thereby compromised the security and safety of the military installation.

Quincy’s co-conspirator Green pleaded guilty on July 8, 2020, to one count of conspiracy to defraud the United States and commit theft of property of value to the United States

Continue Reading

How Can You Tell a Common Law Employee From an Independent Contractor?



a person sitting in a car: Delivery driver using tablet in van with package on seat


© Getty Images
Delivery driver using tablet in van with package on seat

Independent contractors can be an invaluable addition to your workforce. But how can you be sure the person you’re contracting with is truly independent?

It’s not simply a matter of mutual agreement. You can sign a contract with someone specifically creating an independent contractor relationship that won’t hold up in court because the person is a common law employee.

Misclassifying a common law employee as an independent contractor is a major liability, exposing your business to potential lawsuits, penalties, back taxes, and audits. It can also damage employee productivity and morale. The longer the errors go on, the bigger the risk grows.

Before you contract with any worker, you need to know the difference between a common law employee and an independent contractor.

Overview: What is a common law employee?

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) defines a common law employee as “anyone who performs services for you … if you can control what will be done and how it will be done.”

If you’re thinking the last half of that definition could use a little fleshing out, you have a very good point. Anytime you hire someone to do work, you control some aspects of “what will be done and how it will be done.” You don’t just hire a kid to mow any lawn on the block, right?

So, how much control can you exert before a worker becomes an employee?

Common law employee vs. independent contractor: What’s the difference?

The difference between independent contractor and common law employee rides on the control and independence evidenced in the relationship. You may be accustomed to taking a very hands-on approach to managing employees. Contractors require a different approach.

This is important because common law employees must be

Continue Reading

Two Okanagan families left in financial hole after contractor allegedly skips town

Two Okanagan families are in a financial and literal hole after a pool contractor allegedly took their money and skipped town.

“We hired a contractor back in late May, he came in and did all the excavation work,” said Steve Croxford, a Kelowna resident.

“He told us he had all the permits in place to get going.”

However, the contractor had no permits, according to the city.

Read more:
Tree removal, replacement underway at popular park in downtown Kelowna

It’s a case of buyer beware after Stephana Johnson and her neighbour Steve Croxford found what they thought was ‘a great deal’ after finding a pool contractor on Facebook.

Story continues below advertisement

They decided to hire the same contractor to build both of their pools in neighbouring yards.

What happened soon after construction began was a shock.

“That’s where he’s abandoned it basically, we paid him approximately half of the money for the pool,” said Croxford.

Read more:
Outdoor overnight shelter site in Kelowna relocated

The two families said they hired a man who calls himself Jared or J-Hay and his company Pyramid Pools.

The pool contractor promised them two finished underground pools within four weeks — it’s now been almost four months.

Global News talked to multiple pool companies in Kelowna who say they’ve heard of this fly-by-night pool contractor who’s left multiple people high and dry.

Read more:
Long-vacant McDonald’s restaurant in Kelowna to be levelled this fall, city says

Shortly after the alleged fraudster skipped out on the job, the city sent an inspector to their properties.

They issued a cease work order on Aug. 1st and the property owners say the city demanded a 71,000 dollar bond and ordered them to remove the massive dirt pile that was left on city property.

Story continues below advertisement

Continue Reading

Before Contractor Billed TARC For No Work, She Worked For MSD Director

A scathing report released last week revealed widespread misspending and sexual misconduct at Louisville’s public transit agency. Much of the report focused on then-executive director Ferdinand Risco’s relationship with a contractor who was paid more than $228,000 for no demonstrable work. 

That contractor previously worked for another top city official: Tony Parrott, the executive director of the Louisville Metropolitan Sewer District. When he worked in Cincinnati, Parrott paid the same contractor $3 million over five years, a deal one city councilman at the time called “unconscionable.” 

This is not a coincidence: Parrott introduced the contractor to Risco.

The referral came just months after an Ohio state audit revealed Parrott had misspent more than $750,000 on bloated, often unnecessary contracts during his time running Cincinnati MSD.

Risco was fired in February after sexual assault and harassment allegations from staff came to light.

The contractor that worked with Risco at TARC was not named in the report because she has accused him of sexual assault. But her attorney confirmed her identity, and the report makes it fairly clear who she is: the same woman who Parrott worked with closely for over a decade in Cincinnati. 

In a brief response to emailed questions, Parrott downplayed his role in connecting Risco and the contractor, saying it was simply a referral. He did not offer more details on why he would refer this specific contractor to TARC, or what services he thought she would be best suited to provide. 

Jean Porter, a spokesperson for Mayor Greg Fischer, also dismissed the concern, saying Parrott advised Fischer’s office that all he did was introduce Risco and the contractor at a “water equity task force meeting” years ago.

But the contractor told TARC investigators that Parrott was the one who initially reached out to her about an

Continue Reading

Feds:HISD executive took kickbacks from landscaping contractor

The feds say HISD Chief Operating Officer Brian Busby conspired with a landscaping contractor in exchange for “cash kickbacks.”

HOUSTON — Federal prosecutors are accusing a former high-ranking Houston ISD official of taking kickbacks from a district contractor, according to a newly filed court document n the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas.

The civil forfeiture complaint sheds light on why federal agents were at the Cypress home of HISD’s Chief Operating Officer in late February. They seized $90,150 from Brian Busby’s home, alleging that the school district COO conspired with an unnamed district landscaping contractor to approve proposals submitted by the contractor and to pay that business for work that it did not perform. 

Federal prosecutors also allege that, at times, HISD employees performed some of the work, often at overtime rates.

So far, nobody has been charged with a crime, but “in order to share the criminal proceeds the Contractor obtained from the fraud, the Contractor paid kickbacks to C.O.O. Busby, including cash kickbacks,” Assistant U.S. Attorney Kristine Rollinson wrote in the court filing.

RELATED: FBI conducting ‘court authorized law enforcement activity’ at HISD’s headquarters

The document also states the contractor would sometimes write checks from his business account to subcontractors, and have them cash the check and return most of the cash to the contractor. After Busby met with the contractor, he allegedly would structure multiple cash deposits into various bank accounts Busby controlled, according to the court filing.

Federal agents also seized more than $95,000 from the unnamed contractor.

A spokesperson for the U.S. Attorney’s Office would not comment on the civil forfeiture or speculate on any possible criminal charges.

Attempts to reach Brian Busby for comment were not successful. An HISD spokesperson provided the following statement:

“HISD is not a party to

Continue Reading