Former Orleans Parish Deputy Pleads Guilty to Conspiracy to Commit Bribery
|U.S. Attorney’s Office March 21, 2013|
NEW ORLEANS—Gerard J. Hoffman, Jr., 59, a resident of Mandeville, Louisiana, pled guilty today before U.S. District Judge Jane Triche Milazzo to conspiracy to commit bribery, announced U.S. Attorney Dana J. Boente.
According to the factual basis, Hoffman, the former head of the maintenance department at the Orleans Parish Sheriff’s Office (OPSO), began receiving things of value from a contractor, identified as Businessman B, in exchange for a rigged bidding system employed to steer OPSO work to Businessman B. In particular, from 2007 through 2011, Businessman B would submit bids for OPSO work in the name of his respective company but, with the knowledge and participation of, among others, Hoffman, would also submit phony or fake bids for these same projects in the names of other local companies, in an effort to give the appearance of a competitive bidding process. In many cases, the phony bids would intentionally be higher than the bids from Businessman B and, consequently, the OPSO work would be awarded, with Hoffman’s participation and knowledge, to Businessman B.
In exchange for this rigged bidding process, according to court documents, Hoffman received several things of value from Businessman B. For example, from 2007 through 2011, Hoffman received a trailer, a storage container, and free maintenance and construction work at a house owned by Hoffman, all at no cost to him. In total, Hoffman received at least $5,000, but less than $10,000, in things of value from Businessman B in exchange for Hoffman’s official acts at the OPSO.
Hoffman faces a maximum penalty of five years’ imprisonment, three years’ supervised release, a $250,000 fine, and a $100 special assessment. Sentencing has been scheduled for June 20, 2013.
U.S. Attorney Boente, as well as the investigative and prosecution team, offers their thanks to the Metropolitan Crime Commission for providing valuable assistance in this case.
The case was investigated by special agents of the Federal Bureau of Investigation. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Matt Chester and Jon Maestri.