Audrey Strauss, United States attorney for the South District of New York, and Michael Speckhardt, Special Representative for the US State Department, announced the arrest of SINA MOAYEDI, the owner of a construction company, on charges of bribery and fraud . MOAYEDI was arrested in Castleton, Virginia and will be presented today in the western district of Virginia before US Judge Joel C. Hoppe.

Audrey Strauss, US attorney in Manhattan, said: “Sina Moayedi has allegedly provided false information about the qualifications of his employees and the property of his company in order to induce the State Department to win lucrative construction contracts worth around 100 million US dollars Moayedi’s company Montage, Inc. Moayedi allegedly cultivated a State Department insider and paid the insider lucrative bribes in exchange for confidential State Department bid information. Moayedi must now be held accountable for his alleged brazen fraud against the government. “

Special Agent Michael Speckhardt in charge said: “As alleged, the defendant’s plan to undermine the Ministry’s procurement process for personal gain caught up with him today and he will now be held accountable. His alleged actions not only harm other legitimate companies that are competing for awards, but also damage public confidence in the effective and efficient use of taxpayers’ money. “

According to allegations in the complaint[1]::

Montage, Inc. (“Montage”) is a US-based company primarily involved in government construction projects around the world, including embassies, military posts, consulates and similar overseas properties owned and operated by the US government become. Montage has completed over $ 220 million worth of contract work for the US government, including the Department of Defense, the Department of Justice / Federal Bureau of Investigation, the State Department, the Department of the Interior, the Department of Agriculture, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (“NASA “), The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (” EEOC “), and the Department of Veterans Affairs. As of 2014, Montage appears to have mainly focused on competing and obtaining contracts with the State Department. During this period, the State Department Montage has awarded approximately six construction projects overseas for the US Embassy / Consulate totaling US $ 100 million in countries such as Ecuador, Spain, Sudan, the Czech Republic and Bermuda. The founder of Montage is SINA MOAYEDI.

Montage was involved in at least two fraud programs. The first program claims that MOAYEDI and Montage lied about being a female-owned company from around 2014 to September 2020 in order to secure undeserved advantages in the bidding process. In this context, it is advantageous for a company to be in the majority ownership of a person from a socially or economically disadvantaged community when applying for contracts from the federal government. In fact, certain contracts (or parts of contracts) are “reserved” for such companies, that is, available only to such companies. MOAYEDI and Montage repeatedly incorrectly stated in their submissions to the State Department that Montage was owned by women or owned and owned by minorities in order to falsely induce the State Department to award lucrative installation construction contracts. In fact, MOAYEDI has lied repeatedly that Montage is a female-owned company and, in fact, MOAYEDI controls Montage and makes all material decisions on Montage’s behalf. As MOAYEDI told a bank that inquired about Montag’s ownership status, “I am, and always have been, the sole owner and president of Montage.” Montage and MOAYEDI have repeatedly misrepresented the qualifications of the assembly staff and clearly overrated them. MOAYEDI made these false statements to meet the requirements of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the contract for minimum experience in certain key positions, among other things.

The second system cited in the complaint is a bribery program for at least 2016 and 2017. Insider-1 is employed in Overseas Building Operations (“OBO”) of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, which, according to the OBO website, “directs the worldwide overseas construction program for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the US government overseas community. “In particular, Insider-1 works for the department for OBO project development and coordination of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Europe. In connection with overseas construction projects, the Department of State has a Technical Evaluation Panel (TEP) that takes into account all aspects of a vendor’s plan to carry out the project. The TEP has the power to disqualify a provider. Insider-1 oversaw the TEP for the Hamilton, Bermuda project – a project awarded to Montage. In 2016 and 2017, MOAYEDI paid Insider-1 cash bribes in exchange for confidential bid information from the U.S. State Department on a specific multi-million dollar deal in Bermuda that Montage had bid for at the time. In connection with the tendering process for the Bermuda project, Insider-1 MOAYEDI announced the following in sum and content: Its bid was low; Montage could add $ 300,000 to its bid and would still be the low bidder. and he should return Insider-1 20 percent, or $ 60,000, in exchange for that information. Shortly thereafter, Montage increased its offering by nearly $ 1 million. In a letter attached to the revised offer, MOAYEDI incorrectly stated to the State Department that Montage’s revised offer was due to “a calculation error in our estimates worksheets”. MOAYEDI then paid Insider-1 $ 60,000 in cash in three separate payments, using two men as intermediaries.

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MOAYEDI, 66, of Chevy Chase, Maryland, is charged with a number of wire fraud cases and a number of conspiracies to commit cable fraud, each of which entails a maximum prison sentence of 20 years and a number of public bribes, an official, the carries a maximum prison sentence of 15 years.

The maximum possible penalties are prescribed by Congress and are given here for informational purposes only. Any conviction of the accused is determined by the judge.

Ms. Strauss praised the excellent investigative work of the State Department, the Inspector General, the US Attorney’s Special Representative for the Southern Borough of New York, and the Internal Revenue Service. She also thanked the District of Columbia Special Agents and the Montgomery County, Maryland Police Department.

The Office’s Complex Fraud and Cybercrime Division handles this criminal case. U.S. Assistant Attorneys Michael D. Neff and Louis A. Pellegrino are responsible for law enforcement.

[1] As the opening sentence implies, the entire text of the complaint and the description of the complaint listed below are only allegations, and any fact described should be treated as an assertion.