New Haven Man Admits Paying Nearly $350,000 in Bribes to West Haven Housing Authority Official
Deirdre M. Daly, United States Attorney for the District of Connecticut, announced that ANDREW ROSS, 58, of New Haven, waived his right to indictment and pleaded guilty today before U.S. District Judge Michael P. Shea in Hartford to paying nearly $350,000 in bribes to the former executive director of the West Haven Housing Authority in exchange for government contracts and business.
According to court documents and statements made in court, Michael Siwek was the executive director of the West Haven Housing Authority (“WHHA”), an agency that received federal funding. As part of his duties, Siwek had substantial discretion over awarding WHHA business and contracts. Siwek also owned and controlled Four Star Development Company, LLC (“Four Star”). Between January 2007 and February 2012, ROSS, who controlled business entities that received WHHA business and contracts for financial and consulting services, made approximately $349,500 in corrupt payments to Siwek and Four Star.
In total, Siwek received approximately $1.5 million in bribes from individuals who received business with the WHHA and the entities that the WHHA controlled.
ROSS pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit bribery in connection with a program receiving federal funds, which carries a maximum term of imprisonment of five years. Judge Shea scheduled sentencing for January 29, 2015.
On September 4, 2014, Siwek pleaded guilty to related charges. He awaits sentencing.
U.S. Attorney Daly stated that the investigation is ongoing.
This matter is being investigated by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development—Office of Inspector General, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and Internal Revenue Service—Criminal Investigation. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Sarah Karwan.
Citizens are encouraged to report corruption to the Connecticut Public Corruption Task Force by calling 203-238-0505.